“We’ve found that people find these ads really useful”: Google says including ads in AI-generated search will help, not hurt, users

Advertisers will have a front-row seat to Google’s generative AI search capabilities.

AI Overviews will have ads above, below and within AI-generated search results, Rachel Melgaard, Google’s head of global search, said Tuesday at a press roundtable ahead of the company’s Marketing Live event.

Additional updates to generative AI-powered search results will bolster Google’s already huge search advertising business, which is under pressure from AI-powered competitors and a major antitrust case. Last quarter, Google’s search business generated more than $46 billion in revenue, exceeding expectations.

“We’ve been testing this for a while and we’ve found that people find these ads really useful and advertisers can find them effective,” Melgaard said.

Google’s AI search tool would always have ads. The company said it last year. What’s new, however, is the inclusion of sponsored responses. inside the text box. Search ads can be purchased through search and shopping campaigns, as well as campaigns run through Google’s Performance Max tool.

In one example shared at the press event, a Google search for “how do I remove wrinkles from clothes” returned a few different answers, including “hang your clothes in the shower…use a wet towel,” above a sponsored catalog. Styling ad for Downy fabric spray. The company also showed off a feature that showed someone uploading a photo, such as an image of their couch, and then searching for and purchasing the appropriate storage unit that could fit said couch.

Retrospective: About a year ago, Google introduced a suite of advertising products powered by generative AI, tools that could produce instant text and images. This year, instead of introducing a major overhaul, the company released updates that refined those products, giving advertisers the ability to control the colors and fonts used in AI-generated ads, for example. Generative creative updates remain free to use.

When asked, Google executives declined to say specifically how many customers were using these generative AI tools, or how many AI-created banners were currently running.

+1: We recently spoke with Google’s VP and GM of Search Ads about AI-powered search results and their effects on the search ecosystem.

This report was initially published by Marketing Brew.

Subscribe to the Eye on AI newsletter to stay up to date on how AI is shaping the future of business. Sign up free.

Leave a Comment