The Google Ads platform is one of the most valuable tools for companies attempting to build an online presence and conducting digital marketing campaigns. Digital marketing agencies also rely on the platform to create, manage, and analyze the marketing campaigns that they carry out for their clients. It’s not uncommon for Google to make small updates to the platform, but they recently announced some big changes that could have an impact on how digital marketing professionals interact with the platform. So keep reading to find out what changes Google Ads will be implemented in 2021 and how it may impact your rankings.
What’s Changing?Google Ads has already undergone some changes this year and has plans to implement additional changes that may affect how you use it going into 2021. So what exactly has changed? The most impactful changes were the ones Google made to its Google Partners program.
Google Partners ProgramGoogle Partners is a marketing program used by many advertising agencies and firms that run and manage digital marketing campaigns on behalf of brands and companies. In order to become a partner in the program, Google screens candidates by requiring them to first meet certain qualifications. To qualify for partner status, you have to:
- Pass a Google Ads certification test
- Meet spending requirements across the accounts you manage
- Perform well by demonstrating consistent client and company growth
- Video advertising
- Display advertising
- Shopping advertising
- Search advertising
- Maintaining a quality score of 70% or higher. This specific quality score requirement is a new addition, as it used to be that partners just had to generate solid overall ad revenue, demonstrate growth, and maintain a consistent client base. Many people objected that this new requirement would force partners to follow Google’s Machine Learning recommendations since the quality score is largely based on implementing those recommendations. Some digital marketing experts chimed in, expressing concerns that the Machine Learning recommendations are not always in the best interest of their clients.
- Maintaining a 90-day ad spend of at least $20,000. This is double the amount of the old requirement, which required partners to maintain a 90-day ad spend of only $10,000.
- Companies must have at least 50% of their users certified in Google Ads. Requiring 50% of a firm’s users to be certified in Google Ads is a dramatic shift up from the old rule, which required that firms have at least one user certified in Google Ads. For a large firm, this could prove extremely difficult to actually implement.