Apple recently announced that its new operating system, iOS 9, would feature content blocking capabilities within the mobile platform. This announcement has caused quite an uproar within the ad industry, as many are predicting the new algorithm could block upwards of 70 percent of ads. With ‘Admageddon’ in the back of many industry exec’s minds, it was only a matter of time before businesses caught wind of the possible marketing problem. However, many remain optimistic about the new capabilities associated with iOS 9. In fact, more and more people are jumping on board with the idea that Apple’s new ad blocking technology will actually bring improvements to overall ad quality. Before we get into the details and how you as a business owner may be affected, it is important to note that content/ad blocking in iOS 9 will only be available on mobile devices via Safari. This is due in large part to the new Safari release, which provides browser extensions with an efficient way to block cookies, images, pop-ups, and other content.
As of right now, ad blocking won’t impact ads on mobile apps, which is where users actually spend the majority of their time. So, what does this have to do with me, you may be asking? For starters, ads have become a popular – and effective – way for businesses to bring in new revenue and reach a broader audience. It is too early to know what kind of an impact this move will have on those who utilize paid aids as part of their mobile marketing strategy, but it’s safe to say the results won’t be quite as dramatic as some are predicting. As a knowledgeable digital marketing agency, you can rest assured that Tech-Critic is keeping up with this – and every other – update, ensuring we keep our clients in the loop and adjust accordingly.
Will This Change Safari’s Default Search Provider?
Another important aspect of this recent change involves Google. As of right now, Google is Apple’s default search provider, and while many have speculated over the years that this may change, we’ve yet to see this happen. In the event Apple does switch out Google as the default search provider, the reality is that it won’t have that much of an impact on paid search programs. While it is true that smartphones and tablets account for more than half of all Google searches and iOS devices are responsible for two-thirds of those searches, the majority of users either utilize the Google web search app on their phone already, or will likely switch back to Google if Apple makes this change.
Are We Going to See Ad-Free Search Listings?
In recent years, Google has introduced various new algorithms and other changes that have impacted the way in which users search and local results are presented. You have likely noticed that when you perform a search, such as “Dallas personal injury lawyer”, for example, the first three results have a little ‘ad’ symbol next to them. After those top results, the following are determined per an algorithm that Google has implemented. The idea is to create a better user experience by providing people with results that are actually useful and local. The fear is that Apple could have a larger impact on search results if they decide to offer more suggested websites within Safari. Organic results are also a huge part of mobile marketing plans and digital marketing in itself, and it is too early to say how they will be affected by these changes.
The bottom line is that it is important for business owners and customers alike to be aware of Apple’s ambitions, but not to get too far ahead of ourselves. There is often a lot of hype surrounding these big announcements, especially when they involve two powerhouses like Apple and Google. While we may eventually have a new search ad provider for Apple devices, there is no guarantee this will be the case. For now, our mobile marketing campaigns can stay as they are. However, if mobile web ad clocking does begin to affect iPhone users, it could mean less reliance on Google and Facebook when it comes to generating ad-safe mobile web traffic. To learn more about this topic or to discuss your mobile ad presence, please contact our Arlington digital marketing agency today.