Comparison: Search Advertising vs. Display Advertising

Search advertising and display advertising are two of the most popular forms of online advertising. Both have their own set of benefits and can be used to achieve different marketing goals. Here, in this article, we will look at the benefits in favour of search advertising over display advertising which is helpful to understand where the distinctions exist in marketing approaches.

1. Targeted audience

Search advertising allows advertisers to target specific keywords and phrases, which means that your ads are only shown to users who are actively searching for those keywords.

Search advertising permits a highly targeted audience especially if you recognize exactly how your audience may search for something, which leads to a higher likelihood of conversions.

Display advertising, on the other hand, allows advertisers to target specific demographics, interests, and behaviors, which also leads to a targeted audience. However, Search advertising distinctly picks up on the tone of an audience as they seek to resolve a problem whereas display advertising will place billboards in front of audiences who have visited similar pages and who may have similar interests to demographics which have visited your page.

2. Cost-effective

Both search advertising and display advertising can be cost-effective, depending on the approach taken. Search advertising, an advertiser only pays when a user clicks on their ads, which means that they are not paying for ad impressions that do not lead to a conversions such as a click or a download. Display advertising can also be cost-effective, but relies on ad impressions and clicks of a campaign within a specific budget based upon audiences who may not be seeking out specific keywords to solve their issue. So a search advertising campaign may be preferable for finding prospects who may not be familiar with your product whereas display advertising is likely to convert more for companies with a little more brand equity that are likely to generate clicks, and ultimately, conversions.

3. Measurable results

Both search advertising and display advertising provide measurable results, which allows advertisers to track the success of their campaigns. With search advertising, advertisers can track the number of clicks and conversions, while with display advertising, they can track the number of ad impressions, clicks, and conversions. Although both can include metrics, search advertising distinguishes prospects compelled enough to select a result from a search that resolves their issue whereas displays advertising is more passive targeting where a campaign may be directed at a certain prospect.

4. Remarketing

Both search advertising and display advertising allow for remarketing, which is the process of targeting users who have previously interacted with an advertiser’s website or ads. This allows advertisers to reach users who are more likely to convert, as they have already shown an interest in the advertiser’s products or services.

5. Intention

Search advertising targets users who have a clear intention to purchase a product or service, which makes it more likely for them to convert. Although Displays target demographics and users with similar behaviors, there is a clearer intention with search advertising with those seeking out a solution for their inquiry vs. display advertising which can appear for clients who have similarly sought out other related content but, could have intention misrepresented when a prospects looks to learn about a subject, for example. A real life example is someone looking for tire installation in their area or how to install can show how a search ad that offers the service vs. a display ad that could share tires for purchase to clients who have recently looked up related topics to tire installation, or purchasing of tires.

6. Conversion-focused

Search advertising focuses on conversion based on users’ search to drive sales. Whereas Display Advertising is focused a little more on driving brand awareness for demographics looking to solve a similar problem. If you’re driving a service or product you’re looking to sell that clearly solves a user’s problem, then you’re better off with a pooling your resources for search advertising.

Although there are benefits to search and display advertising, there are circumstances where it is better to do display advertising vs. search advertising. Search advertising is designed for a quicker move towards converting on your goals; purchases, email subscriptions, downloads. Whereas display advertising is more focused on a second round of showcasing a brand and developing the web presence. For more information about conversion tracking and how it should be defined with the accompanying information on search advertising, click here! Advertisers can choose to use one or both forms of advertising, depending on their specific goals and target audience.

Reach out to us here at EV Advisory for online advertising options that can help you with your company goals.