Google Chrome's Ad Blocker Will Come into Full Effect from July 2019
Back in 2017, Google announced that it was developing its own ad blocker within Google Chrome in order to provide a better user experience, penalizing websites which use intrusive, annoying ad types.
As explained by Google at the time:
"The vast majority of online content creators fund their work with advertising. That means they want the ads that run on their sites to be compelling, useful and engaging - ones that people actually want to see and interact with. But the reality is, it's far too common that people encounter annoying, intrusive ads on the web - like the kind that blare music unexpectedly, or force you to wait 10 seconds before you can see the content on the page. These frustrating experiences can lead some people to block all ads, taking a big toll on the content creators, journalists, web developers and videographers who depend on ads to fund their content creation."
Rather than let broader ad blockers rule the way forward, Google decided to create its own blocker, which would stop showing ads - including those owned or served by Google - on websites which were not compliant with the Better Ads Standards.
That process went live for North American and European websites last year, and now, Google has announced that Chrome will begin filtering ads on sites "which repeatedly violate industry standards and continue to show intrusive, annoying ads to people that visit their websites" in all regions as of July 9th 2019.
That means that if your website is running the ad types identified within these categories, you need to review and remove whatever you can, or face traffic penalties.
So what ad types, specifically, do you need to be aware of? Google's published a graphic of the 12 ad experiences "that research has found to be particularly annoying to users".
If you're running any of these ad types, Google says that you should review your site status in its Ad Experience Report, a tool which highlights any ad-related issues identified by Chrome.
It's definitely a noteworthy concern - Chrome is currently the dominant desktop web browser, with around 41.6% market share. And while more and more interactions are switching to mobile, that's still a lot of potential traffic to lose - though it is worth noting that, according to Google:
"...out of millions of sites we’ve reviewed to date, less than 1% have had their ads filtered"
Google also notes that its early experiences with the ad block tool in Europe and North America have been relatively positive, with two-thirds of all publishers who had initially been identified as non-compliant to the Better Ads Standards now being in good standing.
If you have any concerns, you definitely need to review your ad content, and utilize Google's Ad Experience Report to ensure you're compliant with the guidelines.
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