In June 2017, Google announced that it would release a Chrome ad blocker in early 2018. This was big (and shocking!) news coming from a tech company that makes about 90% of its revenue from advertisements.
Whether you’re intrigued or bewildered by this Chrome update, you should know what to expect come launch. Read on to learn when it’s expected to roll out, the impacts it’ll have, and how to prepare for it.
What is it?
In short, Google’s ad blocker will block ads that fail to meet certain standards, making the new technology more of an ad filter. These standards are set by the Coalition for Better Ads—a group that Google is a member of, along with other advertising giants like Microsoft, Facebook, and News Corp.
“The reality is, it’s far too common that people encounter annoying, intrusive ads on the web—like the kind that blare music unexpectedly, or force you to wait 10 seconds before you can see the content on the page,” says Sridhar Ramaswamy, Google’s Senior Vice President of Ads & Commerce, in a blog post.
“These frustrating experiences can lead some people to block all ads—taking a big toll on the content creators, journalists, web developers and videographers who depend on ads to fund their content creation.”
As announced in December 2017, Chrome’s ad blocker is slated to roll out on February 15, 2018, and will block ads that fail to meet the Coalition’s standards for more than 30 days.
On mobile, the Coalition says pop-ups, prestitial ads (these block the content by loading first), pages with more than 30 percent ad density, flashing animated ads, postitial ads with a countdown, full-screen scrollover ads, large sticky ads, and auto-playing videos with sound are likely to be blocked.
On desktop, these ads include pop-ups, auto-playing videos with sound, prestitial ads with a countdown, and large sticky ads.
Publishers can find out if their ads violate the Coalition’s standards by using the Ad Experience Report, which can be found in Google Search Console. You can also study up by reading these Help Center articles.
Why it matters
At first, Chrome’s ad blocker may seem counterintuitive but, as stated above, it won’t make the internet void of ads. Instead, Google is making the web a less obnoxious place (after all, we spend a lot of time here).
Annoying ads slow download times, make pages difficult to browse and, like Ramaswamy said, make the internet frustrating to use. At the end of the day, Google’s ad filter will make the web a better place for users and publishers alike.
How to prepare
The solution is simple (kind of). Create ads that people want to see and share. This is easier said than done, but we all know that consumers would rather be intrigued than interrupted. This is especially true for native advertising, which, when done right, can benefit the publisher, the brand, and the consumer.
A great example of this is Netflix’s collaboration with the Wall Street Journal to promote its show Narcos. Titled “Cocainenomics,” Netflix published sponsored content featuring interactive maps, timelines, and articles exploring the international drug trade and its connection to Medellín, Colombia.
This kind of native advertising doesn’t just generate interest around Narcos but it also provides value to the consumer. At the end of the day, it’s great advertising like this that Google’s ad blocker is hoping to encourage.
Are you excited about Google Chrome’s ad blocker? What are you doing to prepare? Tweet us @Perfect_Search.