Google has introduced an app to help SMBs or anyone using AdWords Express to manage their campaigns on mobile devices. Ironically there’s no app yet for the main AdWords product.
The new app allows businesses and advertisers to create or edit ads and choose targeting criteria “on the go.” Google said in a blog post that advertisers can target ads by zip, city or state or service area:
Now advertisers can choose exactly where to promote their business — in their zip code, city, state or others around the country (currently in English-speaking countries).
This effort should be seen in the context of Google’s larger, renewed push for SMB self service.
This is smart and a useful tool for existing advertisers and perhaps some small agencies that may use AdWords Express on behalf of their clients. However I’m skeptical that it will bring substantially more SMBs into AdWords.
Currently, by some local sales executives’ estimates, self-service represents perhaps 5% to 10% of the addressable SMB market. In several more years it may become a more meaningful component of the SMB advertising landscape. Facebook is an exception when it comes to SMB self-service; however that doesn’t yet extend to Facebook Ads.
Most business owners don’t want to devote the time to developing expertise with digital marketing, even as they grow increasingly sophisticated about it conceptually. Indeed, it’s more of a time (and expertise) issue than one of intelligence or understanding.
If the “addressable” SMB market for a product like this is between 7 and 10 million (out of a theoretical 20+ million firms), even 10% represents a significant number — potentially several billion in potential AdWords revenue.