02 Aug Google is removing the possibility to prevent display ads from being shown in apps
I completely misunderstood Google’s announcement! (sorry about that).
I’m still incredulous, but today I received the first official notification in one of my accounts that the device content exclusion settings will soon be “simplified” by eliminating the possibility of excluding apps traffic. Google is actually removing the possibility of excluding GDN ads from displaying in apps (except through quite complex workarounds, as reported by Lyubomir Popov: https://medium.com/@lyubo_popov_sem/how-to-prepare-for-updates -to-mobile-targeting-and-exclusion-in-google-ads-adwords-e849f07a3e42 with a shortcut via Google Ads editor spotted by Kirk Williams: https://zatomarketing.com/blog/how-to-exclude-141-mobile-app-categories-in-google-ads-the-easy-way/).
This exclusion (often done in blind mistaken and automatically by PPC professionals) was probably limiting significantly the number of advertisers in app display network and lowering cpc (and Google’s earnings). This is certainly one of the most important blow to their credibility I can remember in recent years. I hope they will realize this and will come back on their transparency trail.
This is the text of my original post dated August 2:
Starting from September, excluding the domain adsenseformobileapps.com within blocked placements will no longer prevent our ads from appearing in mobile apps.
These placements can be blocked “upstream”, in a more targeted way, for smartphones and / or tablets, through a new targeting setting (already available in many accounts in the more options menu: “Settings > Devices > Set specific targeting for devices”).
Pay attention to your data in September, because if you do not change this setting as suggested in the image, starting from next month mobile apps block will simply stop working (assuming you had entered adsenseformobileapps.com among the blocked placements in: “Placements > Exclusions”, of course).
Be careful also to block “by default” these positions at the beginning of all campaigns, perhaps because the “passing by PPC Guru” said that you have to do it. My direct experience tells me that, especially in campaigns that promote unwieldy purchases or impulse leads, these placements can be very effective. It is definitely better to check the results in terms of conversions first and then to decide considering real and statistically relevant data, rather than making mistakes on behalf of third parties ;-).
Here is the official communication by Google on the matter + some suggestions for settings.