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Search vs. Display: Which Adwords Network Should You Use?

Search vs. Display: Which Adwords Network Should You Use?

Compared to other forms of advertising, online advertising is more measurable. Well, as it appears, some internet marketing agencies have been hard selling this fact for long. The dirty little secret of online advertising is that most of these companies have no idea how things work on this platform. In majority of cases, they just create an online campaign, let the ad-copy run on all channels and then wait patiently for the customers to pour in.

So, as you can understand, this is a pure guesswork. But thankfully with Google Adwords, you can say goodbye to this. Adwords allows advertisers to target audience by gender, geographical location, device type and more. In spite of this advantage, some advertisers are finding it really hard to figure out which Google Ad network will ensure better return on investment. Unable to reach a conclusion, advertisers eventually make the campaign run on both the Display and the Search networks.


The idea of making an ad run on both the platforms may sound tempting but this idea without a shred of doubt is counterproductive. Figuring out the best performing platform is the key to the success of your Google Adwords Campaign. Each platform has its own set of advantages and disadvantages and therefore, you simply just can’t apply a fit-for-all strategy here. To help you out, here we are going to give a roundup of both the advertising networks so that you can take a better marketing decision next time –

Google Display Network – When to Choose

Google Display Network allows advertisers to display their ads on a list of websites and the list also include some flagship Google Products like – YouTube, Blogger, Gmail, Google Finance etc. Apps and mobile websites have also become part of this Google Display Network lately. All these websites are collectively known as Google Display Network (GDN). As far as the claim of the company is concerned, the reach of the Display Network is 90% and it has got a massive 2 million websites under its kitty.

As an advertiser, you need to realize the truth that not all visitors on Google Display Network are shoppers. People visit those websites on regular basis for reading blog articles, watching videos, catching up on news etc and therefore, if you are just focusing on making those people buy your products, you are definitely not doing it right. Rather than going for the killing at the very onset, you need to work overtime to ensure that the ad is creative and unique enough to capture the attention of the audience. As users are already engaged with the content of the website, it is really hard even for a seasoned marketer to get them click on the ads.

However, that does not mean that you should write off Google Display Network as a source of generating leads for your business. Google Display Network is the most powerful platform to promote your company’s brand image. By making your brand visible on GDN, you might be able to increase the number of brand specific search queries.

Display Network is also ideal for you if the Sales Process is lengthy. There are certain products or services that people don’t buy immediately. Take Laptop for example – people do extensive research, compare different brands, consult with friends etc before buying a laptop. You simply can’t expect that people will land on your website and click on the ‘Buy Now’ button. It is not that simple. You need to establish your brand on the web first and this can be done by utilizing an amazing feature of Display Network that is ‘remarketing’.

If your product looks cool, your marketing budget should make room for Display Network because it allows you to advertise your ad copy along with the product image. Make the most of this opportunity.

Google Search Network – When to Choose

This is probably the default choice of most marketers who want to make their ad-copy visible on Google’s SERP when searched with related terms. The reach of Google Search Network can be increased by including ‘search partners’ like AOL and its likes.

Search Network is preferable for all advertisers because it allows them reach out to people when they are actively looking for something. Moreover, if you are clever enough, combined with other factors, your ad might get top position in the SERP and that means, your website will get maximum exposure online.

Moreover, Ads on the Search Network have become more engaging than ever before. Now, you can show address, phone number, additional links and more with the standard ad copy. It has been observed that Search Network campaigns tend to convert more visitors than its counterpart – Google Display Network.

Search Network campaign is ideal for those advertisers who have limited budget. Search Network allows us to target specific audience and the impact is mostly measurable. Probably, this is the reason, why an increasing number of small business organizations are embracing them.


No matter what Network you choose at the end, you need to make sure that it is contributing to the overall conversion rate. Keep a close eye on the performance and you will be good.