App Discovery Ads on Google Play

Mobile Ads Opt Out by Digital Advertising Alliance

App discovery on the Google Play Store continues to play a critical role in mobile app marketing success. Over the past year Google has provided best practices to enhance app discovery and engagement as well as app promotion tools to get the most out of search and display advertising for developers.

Google announced a program Thursday that will allow mobile developers to advertise their apps in Google Play. In the next few weeks, the company will begin piloting sponsored search results in the app store bringing what looks similar to a native ad in query results.

The app ads on Google Play will initially become available to advertisers that already run search ads on Google. They will serve against Google Play search results in the App Store. Advertisers will have an opportunity to bid on the ads that match a specific search query, such as “hotel apps”, “coupon apps”, “weather apps” or “game apps”.

The mobile app would then appear at the top of the ranked search results returned from Google Play’s store where it would look exactly the same as any other result except for the fact that it will be flagged as an ad via the small “Ad” button that appears under the app’s name. Search ads on Google Play will enable developers to drive more awareness to their apps and provide consumers new ways to discover apps that they may have missed.

In the upcoming weeks, a pilot testing of the new “app discovery ads” service from Google Play will take place. A limited number of users will begin to see ads from a pilot group of advertisers who are already running Google search ads for their apps. For the moment, the ads will only run in the latest version of the Play Store mobile app on Android smartphones, not on tablets or mobile and desktop web. Only a small number of consumers will actually see the new ads at first.

Google isn’t saying how long the program will be in pilot testing nor will it give a broader time-table for a public beta or public launch. It will not confirm how many advertisers are in the initial pilot. Additionally, Google’s introduction of mobile app ads into its app store, ahead of rival Apple, seems not surprising given the nature of its core business. It’s actually a logical next step for the company in a world that’s increasingly mobile.

Oles Dzyub,
Branded Content Manager at ComboApp