For those of you that aren’t familiar with Google Placement Advertising, Google, through their AdWords platform, now allows advertisers to advertise on multiple sites using either simple text ads, images, video or even flash animation. Also, Google allows you to geo-target these placements to make sure you stay within your geographic area as needed. For example, if you only wanted to buy ads in a certain city or zip code, you could allocate your budget there.

These capabilities, now around a year old, were brought about by Google’s purchase of DoubleClick, a large online advertising network. This purchase allowed Google to have direct access to DoubleClick’s ad publishers and bring them on board to sell Google Advertising. However, we have noticed that many of these former DoubleClick ad publishers have resorted to selling their own ads and also running Google Placement ads.

While this might seem like a simple way to advertise through one platform to multiple targets, we’ve found a kink in the system. Because many of the sites that run Google Placement ads sell their own advertising as well, this means that Google advertisements run as last resort if space is still available. These types of placements are called remnant ads, ads that take up leftover space once the major advertisers reach all of their placements. This leftover ad space is cheap and can be very appealing. However, it is also leftover space and will not receive the bulk of traffic to the site, limiting the number of impressions and its impact. So, for those of you considering buying ads through Google Placement, make sure that you do the research necessary to see which sites are utilizing only Google Ads and which are also selling their own advertising.

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