Google Reboots Display Network, Gives Advertisers More Control

Google plans to change the options it gives advertisers for excluding site categories for the Display Network in AdWords. Several site categories are being eliminated, while a few are being added. Others are rolling up into a more concise name.

To streamline the AdWords interface and improve serving, Google says it is merging some site category options and removing others.

Content exclusions, formerly known as "site category options," aim to unify settings across display and video campaigns and provide a "smoother workflow" across a marketer's accounts.

Marketers can now set these exclusions in one place for the entire account and they will apply to all new and existing campaigns.

Marketers have until early 2018 to move all Display Network campaigns to this "simplified" set of options. Google recommends manually updating the options before then.

Content exclusion settings allow marketers to opt out of showing ads alongside certain categories of websites, videos, and mobile apps that may not be appropriate for the brand or its advertising goals.

Among the areas that are  no longer available as site categories for the new Display Network campaigns are forums; error pages; gambling; photo-sharing pages; social networks; video-sharing pages; crime, police and emergency; and military and international conflict site category options.

A few categories are being added. Sensitive Social Issues is a new category that includes content “related to discrimination" and identity relations, scandals and investigations, reproductive rights, firearms and weapons and more.

Content Suitable for Families is another new category. With this option, if marketers exclude “General audiences (DL-G)” they will exclude “Content suitable for families” as well.

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