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Friday, September 4, 2015

Google Launches Native Ads in Google email to All Advertisers.

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Google is rolling out a new ad format in Google email to all advertisers from 1st September. A few years ago, Google launched a new kind of native ad in Google email that sat at the top of the inbox and mostly looked like a regular email. For the most part, that was a pretty unobtrusive way of displaying ads (though some people were rather annoyed by them).

Google is making it easier for all advertisers to buy these ads in Google email.
Update: Google tells us that the native Google email ad format has actually been in beta testing since 2013. Clearly I’ve never clicked on these ads. Google have updated this post to reflect this.
Advertisers can now buy these new email ads directly from AdWords. For Gmail users, these ads will work very differently from the type of ads Google first introduced for Google email and they will appear both in the mobile versions of Gmail and on the website.

The native ads are collapsed by default in Gmail and will expand to full-page native ads when you click on them. Google says the idea here is to “recreate the informational and visual richness of a landing webpage.” It looks like Google will charge advertisers every time a user expands one of these ad units. 

What’s interesting is that these ads are made for forwarding, too, with a “forward” and “Save to Inbox” link underneath all of them. When you click on “Save to Inbox,” the ad will move into your email inbox and you can then treat it just like any other regular email.

Here is an ad I just found in your inbox (clearly targeted at you, given how much backbone bandwidth you buy every month):

Google says it tested various ad formats in Google email and decided to show fewer but higher-quality ads “that integrate more seamlessly with the inbox experience.”

Forwarded native Google email ad.
Advertisers will be able to use the standard AdWords targeting options and work from several templates to build their own native Google email ads that can feature single images, videos, forms, phone numbers and call-to-action buttons.

Google says it will continue to give users the ability to control which types of ads they see (and you can always opt out of interest-based ads, too). Google doesn’t show ads in the inboxes of Google Apps for Work subscribers.

You can’t remember ever clicking on an ad in Google email, but knowing that a click won’t take you out of your inbox may now actually get you to open these ads every now and then.