After testing in closed beta for over two years now, Google has finally launched Interest Categories for AdWords, allowing advertisers to target consumers based on their previous browsing history and individual interests.
Advertisers can choose from a list of categories that match the type of consumers they want to target and Google will show relevant ads to searchers who it believes are interested in those categories.
As told by Google’s Jon Krafcik, Interest Categories works like this:
Our system looks at the types of pages a user visits, taking into account how recently and frequently those pages have been visited, and then associates their browser with relevant interest categories. Using these categories, you can show ads to the people most likely to purchase your products or services, and you can reach them across all types of sites in the Google Display Network in addition to contextually relevant sites.
The best part of this feature is that with over 1,000 interest categories from ecotourism to mobile phones, no one will be left out. Surely advertisers will find a category that fits their offering.
Google anticipates that advertisers will achieve success ranging from 40% to 400% when they reach the over 500 million users/consumers who visit the display network on a daily basis.
What is interesting to note is that, Google Interests sounds a lot like Facebook’s advertising model, which shows ads based on details outlined in your profile or your recent postings. So, is Google playing copycat?
Google user aren’t left out either. They can edit their interest categories or opt out from receiving interest-based ads permanently, at any time, through the Ads Preference Manager at www.google.com/ads/preferences (log in to your Gmail account first).