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What’s next for Google Search? The future of Search ads and PPC

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With the recent explosion in the use of artificial intelligence (AI), there have been big changes in the technology industry. Google needs to stay ahead of this new and exciting era of AI technology. So, what is next for Google Search?

Google has been referred to as the “most powerful company in the world”. To maintain this reputation, Google has placed its focus on AI, advertising, search engine technology and other areas that are continuously advancing.

This ongoing evolution to keep up with demand and the latest tech supports Google on their mission. They aim to organise the world’s information, making it universally accessible and useful through the power of search.

So, what’s next for Google Search?

Google is reimagining what a search engine can do. The company is currently trialling a host of new features with Search Lab in the US but hasn’t announced if or when these will be rolled out to all users. However, the experiments offer some intriguing clues about potential new features.

The latest update to Google Search is the generative AI feature, powered by Google’s latest advancements in AI. For over a decade, AI has been behind the evolution of Google Search. However, now it will be front and centre.

This feature is designed to make search easier. Information is displayed in a new way. It’s easier for users to understand topics and get information and insights from new viewpoints.

AI will do more of the heavy lifting when it comes to researching. Users will be connected to the best of the web, all on the results page.

Your questions answered – by AI technology

Questions are the focus of this new feature. You can ask any question in any format and generative AI will deliver you the answer.

As the AI gives you more information and context, your questions may evolve. Google has already considered this and thought ahead. They have included a follow-up question feature, so you do not need to start over with a new search.

The below image shows an example of generative AI in action. In the image you can see a long question is being asked. Normally, you might break this down into smaller questions for Google Search.

However, the new AI snapshot can suggest key information to answer this complex question. It provides links for those who want to read further. You can also see suggested next steps and the option to ask follow-up questions.

AI search in Google

What does this mean for Google ads?

Generative AI is great for the user and Google. It encourages users to stay on Google’s site for longer. It gives users a quick and effective way to get what they are looking for. But what does it mean for advertisers?

The prime spot at the top of the search engine results page (SERP) is currently often used for Google Search or Shopping ads.

Google has said: “Ads will continue to play an important role in helping people connect with useful information and allowing businesses to be discovered online… ads will continue to appear in dedicated ad slots throughout the page.

“In this new experience, advertisers will still have the opportunity to reach potential customers along their search journeys. We’ll test and evolve the ads experience as we learn more.”

Google shopping

Google suggests that generative AI will also help users with shopping.

Google will also provide a snapshot of noteworthy factors for shoppers to consider. These include product descriptions that have relevant, up-to-date reviews, ratings, prices and product images.

New ad formats could benefit e-commerce brands

Google and YouTube have recently announced two new Google AI-powered campaigns, Demand Gen and Video View Campaigns.

Both aim to connect with consumers and drive demand from the mid-funnel through to purchase. These immersive creative ads are designed to be eye-catching and generate action. We believe these will be successful for e-commerce brands.

Is the Search ad dead?

In an announcement, Google highlighted how their current AI-powered Performance Max ads are just the start of this exciting technology. They have already helped advertisers find untapped conversion opportunities.

But Google made no mention of Search ads. As we’ve seen, the prime spot at the top of the SERP will probably be taken by generative AI with a focus on shopping. Creative ads are being driven towards e-commerce. Could all this be the death of the Search ad?

It’s not the end of Search ads – yet. But without the same visibility at the top of the SERP, we suspect the performance of Search ads could drop.

What could this mean for advertisers?

To get ahead of the curve, we suggest incorporating creative ad formats and campaigns into marketing strategies, rather than solely focusing on search.

Video is becoming an increasingly preferred ad format for both search engines and users. This makes it an exciting area to explore within advertising.

If you are an e-commerce business, this is an opportunity to work on creating successful shopping ads. These will be valuable assets both now and in the future.

For all businesses, these advancements highlight the importance of strong SEO and copywriting. These will help you to appear as an expert in your area. Crafted text will ensure that your content is picked up by Google within their generative AI feature at the top of the page.


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