Logged into Google? You may see more ads

Logged into Google? You may see more ads

Summary: Google may be using its properties--iGoogle, Gmail and Apps--to step up its behavioral ad efforts.That's the conclusion from Piper Jaffray Gene Munster who tracks 400 searches on Google and Yahoo each month.

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TOPICS: Google
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Google may be using its properties--iGoogle, Gmail and Apps--to step up its behavioral ad efforts.

That's the conclusion from Piper Jaffray Gene Munster who tracks 400 searches on Google and Yahoo each month. Munster defines a behavioral ad as one that pertains to a past query.

His takeaways:

  • This month there were 58 percent of queries that had one or more behavioral ad, up from 27 percent last month.
  • You get different search results if you're logged into a Google account. A logged in user gets 79 percent more ads an anonymous one. Most of these additional pitches are behavioral.
  • Google appears to be leveraging its properties to deliver more relevant ads that could boost revenue.

None of this is earth shattering, but Google hasn't yapped much about behavioral targeting. Google has probably spent more time talking about offline advertising--print, radio and television.

Also see: Google delivers; Maybe paid clicks weren’t such a big deal

Munster writes in a research note:

"We noticed a significantly higher number of paid ads per results page while logged into a Google Account: there were 79% more paid search ads per search while logged into a Google Account than while not logged in. Also notable was the instance and frequency of past search query information in later searches. We noted 58% of logged in searches to include at least one behaviorally relevant ad, while only 6% of anonymous searches included a behaviorally relevant ad. While logged in to a Google Account, those searches that did include a behaviorally relevant ad included an average of 4 behaviorally generated ads, while anonymous searches averaged only 2.3. The bottom line is that based on our study, Google appears to be utilizing user accounts to more accurately and more frequently target search users with behavioral ads, while allowing Google to generate sustainable user data based on static rather than dynamic records. We believe this represents the early stages of Google's behavioral ad targeting within search and that the company will continue to make algorithmic changes to improve the quality of behavioral inclusion to paid search ads."

The larger question is whether there will be any user backlash. Google maintains that more relevant ads are helpful. But you can have too much of a good thing--like 79 percent more if you're logged into a Google account.

Topic: Google

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16 comments
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  • Big deal

    Google provides, in my opinion, outstanding services for free to the public. Would you prefer to be charged? The ads I see are certainly less in-your-face than the crap I see on ZDNet.
    DSchrute
    • The Ads on ZDNet...

      ...Really detract from my experience here. The page is huge from a data standpoint. Ad that stupid floating ad that comes in from the left drives me nuts.
      Stuka
      • Actually ...

        ... since the redesign of Zdnet, I have found the site's ads appealing. Up until Zdnet's current design, I can't remember ever clicking on ads found on the site. I believe this underscores the fact that application and ad design, are very important when deriving ad revenue.
        P. Douglas
        • Well yeah...

          ...the layout now is by far better. I just dislike having to load all the flash ad's. But flash ads are far more effective and getting people to click. So I can see it from their point of a view, but still not a big fan :P
          Stuka
  • This is win-win

    I've seen people arguing in the past that behavioral ads are a violation of their privacy but I say: give me more! Properly targeted ads are actually [b]beneficial[/b] to both the consumer and to the business because they do what middle-men are paid to do: bring buyers and sellers together. In fact, I would say the only annoying ad is an "anonymous" ad because the chances that an "anonymous" ad will do anything more than annoy me is slim to none. If it would get me better ads, I say track even more of my behavior Google!

    The other thing to keep in mind is that most of these useful services we get are provided without expecting any up-front payment from us. If you truly find Google search, GMail, and iGoogle useful (which I do), then it is in your best interest to ensure that Google remains profitable. If the price of admission is a few ads, I can deal with that. If you don't find those services useful, then there really is no reason to complain about ads on those sites, I would simply recommend you don't surf there!
    NonZealot
  • RE: Logged into Google? You may see more ads

    Is it ironic that I saw the link to this article because I was logged into GMail (with the web-based GTalk app), and received a pop-up TWEET from twitter@twitter.com ?
    CharliePATpk
  • Sounds good to me

    I prefer targeted ad's, as they tend to be more relevent to what I want to see. And the way google displays their ad's doesnt effect my browsing any. So it sounds fine to me.
    Stuka
  • I don't log into Google; I use an IMAP client (Kmail)

    nt
    D T Schmitz
  • RE: Logged into Google? You may see more ads

    All the more reason not to use Google. This company has spied on its userbase for way too long and needs to be stopped! They want to steal your data and sell it back to you at a profit. You won't see a dime of it. While you are sitting there crying and broke the Google employees are laughing at you while they sit around and play with office toys. How can you use services from a company that operates like that? Simply you can't! Do the right thing.
    Loverock Davidson
    • I understand that Ganja causes paranoia

      What company gives you something without charging you for it in some way or the other? The price of using Google without paying them to work on it, (programmers need to eat too) is unsolicited advertisements. It's called business. If you don't like the service shop somewhere else.
      T1Oracle
    • Poor attempt at Satire.

      nt
      Bozzer
    • 1.5... only because I remember the original one about MSN.

      Why are you rehashing the old mid late 1990's thing about MSN, Windows 95 and that huge indexing file they used to create on the disk back in 1996 and putting a 2008 spin on it but targeting Google?
      B.O.F.H.
  • RE: Logged into Google? You may see more ads.

    [b]Ads!!!!!![/b]

    [i]What Ads???[/i]

    I don't see no ads!


    Oh, that's right, I am a Firefox user with Ad Blocker Plus installed.

    That's why I don't see any ads.

    I have Ad Blocker Plus send all of the ads to /dev/hell
    fatman65535
    • No ads?

      [i]Oh, that's right, I am a Firefox user with Ad Blocker Plus installed. That's why I don't see any ads.[/i]

      Does AdBlocker Plus remove ads from Google search results and from the Gmail sidebar and top bar?

      TRiG.
      Timothy (TRiG)
  • RE: Logged into Google? You may see more ads

    I don't have a problem with targetted ads. They do have more relevence to my preferences so it's possible that I will find something I need in one of the ads.

    That being said, I've only clicked on a few ads, some by accident others in case they may carry some information about what I'm looking for.

    On a side note, I have been shifting away from Google as my prefferred search engine, simply because searches are turning up more and more advertising with less actual information sites.

    Personally I do NOT base purchase decisions on advertisements, when I buy a car I drive the car and look into actual owner reports and do a few other searches on repairs etc, when I buy a stereo I listen to the stereo.

    In nearly 35 years as a working adult I have never made a purchasing decision based on an advertisement.

    Ken.
    merc2dogs`
    • Is Ken a Vulcan?

      [i]In nearly 35 years as a working adult I have never made a purchasing decision based on an advertisement.[/i]

      You carry on believing that if you want to. Do you know anything at all about human psychology?

      TRiG.
      Timothy (TRiG)