Display Advertising in Search Engine Marketing: Illuminating Your Online Presence

Display Advertising in Search Engine Marketing

In the fast-paced Search Engine Marketing world, “Expanding Reach with Display Advertising” has emerged as a powerful strategy to elevate brand visibility, engage audiences, and drive conversions. Display advertising, an essential component of SEO, enables businesses to showcase their products and services through eye-catching visual ads across various online platforms. Unlike traditional text-based ads, display ads utilize compelling images, videos, and interactive elements to capture the attention of target audiences. In this article, we delve into the significance of display advertising in Marketing, exploring how it allows businesses to reach a wider audience, create impactful brand experiences, and achieve remarkable results in their digital marketing campaigns. Join us on this journey to unravel the potential of display advertising as a dynamic tool to expand reach, foster meaningful connections, and thrive in the competitive landscape of online marketing.

What is display Advertising?

Display advertising, or display marketing, is used for visual ads across the internet. These types of adverts generally take the form of images, videos, and even GIFs.

Google display ads appear across the entire Google Display Network, meaning they can appear on various websites where your target audience may already be browsing the internet.

Outside of Google advertising, you can create display ads through other advertising platforms such as Facebook Ads Manager. Facebook’s advertising platform allows you to create display ads that will appear across the Facebook Audience Network of partner apps and websites.

When using the display ad format with YouTube advertising, your display ad will appear next to the platform’s video player.

Why use display Advertising?

With internet use increasing daily – there are now over 4.66 billion internet users worldwide – it is no surprise that the internet is one of the best places to advertise your business.

The digital age has allowed people to shop online with a few clicks without leaving the house. As a result, using display advertising can be a powerful way to reach your target audience.

By allowing your business to show up in the places where your audience is already active online, display advertising can do things that search cannot. Because the Google Display Network is so vast, engaging in display marketing can be risky for your business — if you’re not careful, you can potentially waste a lot of ad spend with display advertising.

However, display advertising has many benefits, and if you are confident in it, you can transform your PPC strategy.

Display ads have the potential to significantly improve your brand awareness thanks to their eye-catching visual format. With display marketing, you can strengthen brand consistency and visibility, nurture leads, track performance, and support the success of your other PPC activity – to name just a few of the benefits.

Strengthen brand consistency and visibility.

People say a picture speaks a thousand words, and when it comes to display advertising, we couldn’t agree more.

One of the things we love most about display advertising is the visual format. The display ad format lets you get creative with colors, text, video, audio, and rich media. This is key for brand visibility and making sure your ad stands out in a positive light.

By using your brand color palette and styling guide, you can create ads that are (or can become) instantly recognizable. This, in turn, will ensure your advert stands out on the page where it’s displayed and will also strengthen your brand consistency.

Nurture leads and engage new audiences.

Display marketing is an important advertising strategy to nurture leads and increase your conversion rate.

Once a potential customer has been introduced to your products or services, a well-placed display ad can also be a great reminder to encourage them to purchase.

On the other hand, you could use display advertising to engage new audiences who may still need to become familiar with your products or services.

The targeting options with display advertising seem almost endless, meaning you can exercise careful control over who does and does not see your display ads.

With display advertising, you can target people based on topics, interest categories, placements, context, demographics, or based on custom audience information.

You can even create advantaged targeting options based on your marketing goals. This is great for reaching people who match your target audience and ensuring you are re-engaging existing customers or previous visitors.

By tapping into the wide variety of targeting options offered by display advertising, you are also more likely to find customers who actively want to make a purchase and, therefore, are more likely to convert.

Track display advertising performance

Display advertising also comes with tracking and analyzing your advertising performance. This means future campaigns can be refined to make them even more successful.

The wealth of insights available through display advertising means you know who you target, when, and why. The Google Display Network and Facebook Advertising platforms offer detailed reports enabling you to analyze the performance of each display ad.

You can also refine where your adverts are shown based on the performance of your ad placements. If you find a particular site is underperforming and wasting ad budget, you can add this placement to your exclusion list.

You are gaining a thorough understanding of your display advertising performance, and which PPC metrics you should track will enable you to make informed decisions about future ad campaigns and minimize your ad spend.

Support other PPC advertising activities.

Digital marketing is a system of interlinking tactics.

Display advertising happily complements other forms of digital marketing and other pay-per-click advertising activities. By using multiple forms of online advertising, you are constantly pushing your products or services and increasing your brand awareness.

Each type of advertising offers different benefits for your business, meaning it is important to consider all forms of online advertisements when creating a well-structured digital marketing campaign.

Also read : Call-to-Action Strategies for Search Engine Marketing: Engaging Your Online Audience

What is display marketing: the three types of display ads

When developing a display advertising campaign, there are many display advertising strategies and formats to choose from. However, three key strategies can cover most of these advertising methods: site placement advertising, contextual advertising, and remarketing.

These display marketing strategies all have their place within any good digital marketing campaign, depending on which stage of the customer funnel they intend to target. These display advertising formats complement each other and work together to help you achieve your marketing goals.

Here’s a quick rundown of each of the three overarching display advertising strategies:

Site Placement Advertising

This type of display advertising puts you (or the marketer working on your behalf) in control of where you want your display ads to appear. You can choose sites, pages, and apps where research has shown that your target audience resides.

Contextual Advertising

Contextual advertising is based on context, meaning your brand’s ads are placed on relevant websites. If you are a hotel owner, your display ads would appear on travel websites. A clothing advertiser would be shown on fashion blogs.

The Google algorithm can use numerous sources to determine context, including keywords, linguistic page structure, audience data, and other factors. Using the keyword planner tool when designing your display ads can ensure your ads reach the right people.


Remarketing display ads will only appear to users who have interacted with your brand. When using remarketing display ads, you have several targeting options. For example, you could display a particular set of display adverts to people who visited your website but still need to convert.

Display adverts tailored to retargeting previous audiences are ads that subconsciously say, ‘Hey, you forgot to check out!’. It is an incredibly personable type of display advertising that can generate incredible results.

Also read: Search Engine Marketing Tools

Google Display Advertising

The biggest player in the game regarding display advertising is Google. The Google Display Network currently reaches 90% of all internet users across the globe – on millions of different websites, blogs, news sites, and their sites such as YouTube and Gmail.

The two main types of Google display ads

Two main types of Google display ads are commonly used; responsive and uploaded image ads. The Google Display Network only supported basic text or image ads in several standard sizes for years.

Over the years, the number of available ad formats on the Google Display Network has drastically increased, and the introduction of responsive display ads has, arguably, transformed the advertising game for many businesses looking to promote their products and services with Google Ads.

Responsive display ads

Responsive display ads are the default ads for advertisers using Google display advertising.

With responsive display ads, you upload a selection of images or allow Google to scrape your website for suitable images and write a choice of headlines and descriptions for your ads. Google will then use these to create responsive ads for you.

Google Ads will automatically optimize your responsive display ad for performance by testing different combinations of visuals and copy to determine which ad versions perform best.

On top of this, responsive display ads automatically adjust in size to suit the requirements of the webpage it appears on, helping to make the entire advertising process faster and more seamless for you.

Responsive display ads typically have a lower cost-per-click (CPC) and a higher click-through rate (CTR) than uploaded image ads. However, the responsive nature of these ads means that you hand the reins over to Google and have less control over the design process.

Uploaded image ads

Unlike responsive display ads, uploaded image ads allow you to have creative control over the look and feel of your display ads.

When using standard image ads, you can create them in a design tool of your choice and then upload them to the Google Ads interface using one of the support image file formats; JPG, PNG, or GIF.

However, it’s important to note that uploaded image ads won’t automatically resize to fit the webpage they are shown on. Therefore, if using this display ad type, you must upload your ad in various ad sizes to ensure your advert will be shown across different web pages.

As a result, uploaded image ads allow you to exercise greater control over the design of your display ads. However, it is a more manual process that requires you to take an onus for the optimization and performance of your display ads.

Standard ad sizes on Google

Variety is the spice of life when displaying advertising through Google. There is a wide range of ad sizes to choose from, allowing you to test which format works best for your ad campaigns.

The currently supported ad sizes for Google Display ads are:

Square and rectangle ad sizes

  • 200 x 200px – Small Square
  • 240 x 400px – Vertical Rectangle
  • 250 x 250px – Square
  • 250 x 360px – Triple Widescreen
  • 300 x 250px – Inline Rectangle
  • 336 x 280px – Large Rectangle
  • 580 x 400px – Netboard

Skyscraper ad sizes

  • 120 x 600px – Skyscraper
  • 160 x 600px – Wide Skyscraper
  • 300 x 600px – Half-Page Ad
  • 300 x 1050px – Portrait

Leaderboard ad sizes

  • 468 x 60px – Banner
  • 728 x 90px – Leaderboard
  • 930 x 180px – Top Banner
  • 970 x 90px – Large Leaderboard
  • 970 x 250px – Billboard
  • 980 x 120px – Panorama

Mobile-only ad sizes

  • 300 x 50px – Mobile Banner
  • 320 x 50px – Mobile Leaderboard
  • 320 x 100px – Large Mobile Banner

When uploading your standard image ads for use on the Google Display Network, make sure you upload your ad in various sizes to ensure it will be displayed across different mobile and desktop placements.

Targeted display ads use banners (static images, videos, and HTML5). Banner ads can come in various sizes and are needed to display advertising on millions of websites and apps while users browse the web. Media advertising can be shown on both desktop and mobile devices.

Targeted display advertising is a type of digital marketing that targets potential customers based on a broad set of variables such as demographics, online habits, and interests.

Unlike other types of digital advertising, targeted advertising is most often paid on a CPM (cost per mill) model, which allows advertisers to pay for a large number of impressions at once.

Also read : Influencer Marketing Impact on Search Engine Marketing: Boosting Your Brand Online

Why display advertising is important: a wrap-up

Hopefully, this article has answered your questions about “what is display advertising and why is it important?” and reminded you of its importance in your wider digital marketing efforts.

Display advertising is a fantastic way of increasing brand awareness and converting leads into sales in a customizable, personable, and entirely responsive way.

If you are looking to level up your display advertising campaigns, we are here to help. Growing your online business is important, and here at Common Ground, we will use our proven frameworks and PPC experience to generate measurable results for your business.


In conclusion, “Expanding Reach with Display Advertising in Search Engine Marketing” opens a world of possibilities for businesses seeking to make a lasting impact in the digital sphere. Display advertising offers a visually captivating way to reach a broader audience and leave a memorable impression on potential customers. Businesses can effectively convey their brand message and offerings to target audiences across various online platforms by incorporating striking images, engaging videos, and interactive elements. Display advertising expands the reach and fosters meaningful connections with users, leading to increased brand awareness and improved engagement. Leveraging display advertising as part of a comprehensive SEM strategy empowers businesses to stand out amidst competitors, drive higher website traffic, and achieve a higher return on investment. As businesses embrace the potential of display advertising, they unlock new avenues to connect with their audience, build brand authority, and achieve remarkable success in the ever-evolving landscape of Search Engine Marketing.

Also read : 6 Best Audience Intelligence Tools For Customer Insights


What is display advertising in Search Engine Marketing (SEM)?

Display advertising in SEM refers to visual ads, such as images, videos, and interactive media, to promote products or services across various online platforms. These ads are displayed on websites, mobile apps, and social media platforms, targeting specific audiences based on their interests and demographics.

How does display advertising help in expanding the reach of businesses?

Display advertising expands reach by showcasing visually appealing ads to a wider audience. These eye-catching ads capture the attention of potential customers, even those who may have yet to search for specific products or services. Display ads increase brand exposure and reach users interested in the offerings.

What are the benefits of using display advertising in SEM campaigns?

Display advertising offers several benefits in SEM campaigns. It enhances brand visibility, increases website traffic, and fosters brand recall through engaging visuals. Display ads also provide precise targeting options, allowing businesses to reach the right audience at the right time, improving conversions and ROI.

How can businesses optimize their display advertising for maximum impact?

Businesses should create visually appealing and relevant ads that resonate with their target audience. A/B testing different ad creatives, using compelling calls-to-action, and targeting the right audience segments are essential strategies. Regularly monitoring and analyzing campaign performance helps refine and improve display advertising effectiveness.