Google announced yesterday that starting February 15, annoying ads will be blocked in Chrome. “Annoying” can mean pop-ups ads, videos with auto-play, sticky ads and more. Why is Google making a change? Based on the Coalition for Better Ads’ guidelines and Chrome user survey responses, people find these ads most intrusive.
This change affects both advertisers and publishers, so your digital agency may be nervous about these changes.
Publishers who employ ads on their websites will be given a once-over by Google’s filter each time the site loads. If they use only non-intrusive ads, they’re good to go and given a “Passing” grade. If Google finds intrusive ads on their website, the publisher will be given a “Warning,” block intrusive ads and continue showing ads that pass the standards. If these warnings aren’t addressed in 30 days, Chrome won’t show any ads on the site, which will be given a “Failing” status.
Agencies who design and buy ads without these annoying aspects will be safe, as long as you don’t rely on ad buys from sites that display your clients’ safe ads alongside pop-ups, auto-play videos with sound, etc. Because publishers rely on ad revenue from you and your clients, they likely won’t be willing to risk violating Google’s new guidelines.
If your clients rely on intrusive ad types, you’re going to need to come up with new, less annoying ways to reach customers. While this change may seem harsh, Google’s goal is that by creating an environment that doesn’t annoy users, they’ll be less likely to use ad blockers of their own. This means potential customers are more likely to see your ads delivered to their screen – and that’s good news for you and your clients!