Digital Marketing Trends 2019: Q1 Round-Up

Happy April! We hope you all had a great Q1. Let’s take a look at five marketing trends and industry news updates from this past quarter and hear a word from our analysts on the implications of each of these trends.

1. Shoppable Ads in Google Images

Have you ever decided to buy something by looking through Google Images? You might search “home office ideas,” and scrolling through Google images, you see a desk you like, and decide to buy it. Google realized that shoppers were using Google Images for more than just looking – and decided to capitalize on that.

Enter shoppable ads on Google Images! Now, using that same scenario, if you look at an image of “home office ideas”, you’ll be able to click on the lamp in the image and be linked directly to a site. Read the full article here. 

Analyst’s Thoughts: Christina DiSomma

“This feature offers serious potential to encourage customers to purchase more than one product by showcasing them together within the same ad. The upside is an increased average order value, as well as additional revenue. However, these ads are serving primarily on generic terms, meaning retailers will need to watch ads carefully to ensure spend isn’t misused.”

2. Why Paid Organic is Taking Over Amazon

From the name “Fair Organic Listings,” you might assume the most popular items being bought on Amazon are at the top of the page—but you’d be wrong. That precious top of the page real estate is being monopolized by Amazon’s own private-label brands. While the amount of space taken up by Amazon brand products varies by product category (ex. for detergent, Amazon occupies almost the entire first page, while for shoes they only occupy the first two rows), it is surprising to see how many of the first results are Amazon brand. Read the full article here. 

Analyst’s Thoughts: CJ Milhoan

“When we begin working with any new client on Amazon we cannot stress enough to clients that this doesn’t mean they can have a “laissez-faire” attitude towards their Amazon program now. The best partnerships on Amazon are clearly the ones where inventory issues are addressed almost immediately, products are updated as needed, brand standards being upheld, but even more important…you must continue to make your products and their descriptions, among other things, relevant. The image from this article shows how much space Amazon ads take up compared to Amazon organic listings—shocking. So, why be concerned with improving my listing in such a small space? Well, it’s been cited that coupled with a good organic strategy and a variety of advertising tactics on Amazon, customers will typically buy more than one product from you.”

3. Amazon Private Label Brands

Amazon is hiring, but not for any-old position! With the launch of “The Amazon Accelerator Program”, Amazon is seeking a program leader to spearhead their private brands initiative. Here’s how it works. Amazon looks for manufacturers who want to launch their brand through Amazon. Think of it like publishing a book on Amazon—the author (or the manufacturer in this case) gets to speed up the launch of their product, for the small price of the commission Amazon collects.

This push for brands “hosted” by Amazon has the potential to push out third-party sellers who currently make up the majority of the site. On the other hand, this move could help Amazon get rid of bootleg or low quality products. Read the full article here. 

Analyst’s Thoughts: CJ Milhoan

“It’s important for anyone selling on Amazon to make sure their products are of the best quality, but even more important is the fact that you, as a store owner keep an eye on the revolving door of products in your industry. Why? Well, for instance, it’s just best practice to be on top of what’s trending and having a good product offering, but, now, even more so if you are selling on Amazon. Amazon has made it no secret that they offer their own “Amazon Basics” items along with a plethora of other items stretching across various categories. Now it’s widely known Amazon is inviting manufacturers to produce private label items, or if you didn’t know this, you should listen up and act now. This matters because Amazon will undoubtedly be able to control the conversation with most manufacturers and have the power when it comes to negotiating margins. Simply put, their margins will likely be better than yours. This is where Omnitail comes in—by managing your Amazon products with profitability in mind, we ensure your ad dollars are spent in areas you’re actually competitive.”

4. Google Ads is Retiring the Average Position Reporting Metric

This year, Google will retire the average position reporting metric. Why? Google is hoping that new metrics will give a clearer picture of your prominence on a page. Originally, average position was intended to show the order your ad appeared, not the prominence of your ad on the page—which has been misunderstood by many. While the metric hasn’t been removed completely yet, Google has already begun to remove the average position metric with the release of click share reporting to search campaigns. Read the full article here. 

Analyst’s Thoughts: Tim Moran

“With the deprecation of the average position metric, advertisers will need to get accustomed to newer, generally more robust metrics such as “Search Top IS” and “Search abs. Top IS”. These newer metrics give similar insights insofar as understanding where you stand in terms of bid competitiveness, with less room for misinterpretation. Of course, these new metrics will need to be looked at in conjunction with the standard impression share metric (just as with average position) as they are calculated as a percentage of impressions received rather than total available impressions. Overall, I think the new metrics are sufficient for most meaningful analyses—though nostalgia makes me wonder why we cant have both.”

5. Google Ads API Query Builder 

Google recently released a new, user-friendly query builder. Instead of having to understand how to write the query language, you can simply input the resources, fields, and filters you want and the query builder will output a code for you to use. Simply copy the generated code and paste it where you want to use it. Read the full article here. 

Analyst’s Thoughts: Christina DiSomma 

One of the better new features to come out of the Google Ads redesign for the tech-savvy marketer! Agencies and advertisers alike will now be able to query the API directly in a much more intuitive format—allowing them to bypass third-party tools and offer reporting directly on the metrics they care most about.”


Savannah is the Marketing Specialist at Omnitail. She has a degree in Marketing with a minor in Graphic Design from George Mason University. Her favorite part of the job is the design work she get to do, and the variety everyday brings. She’s happy to work with such an excellent team at Omnitail.

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