Adobe Flash is all but dead and Google is putting the final nails in the coffin by dropping support for Flash-based ads in favor of ads coded in HTML5. This isn’t happening immediately, but Google announced its intention to move to HTML5 by January 2017 in order to give advertisers time to transition.

As part of this transition away from these ads, Google will no longer allow Flash formatted ads to be uploaded to the Google Display Network starting June 30th of this year. Up until then, you can still upload any Flash-based display ads you’ve been working on and they will continue to run until January.

Google notes that you should update your display ads before either of these dates for best performance, and that video ads built in Flash will not be impacted by the change.

The death of Flash is likely to be dragged out for quite some time, but this is a big loss for Adobe’s format. Adobe’s player only accounts for 5% of mobile and web video seen last year, but it has still been a major part of major online ad networks. If these ad networks no longer accept Flash, then Flash loses its one last thing keeping it relevant.


This week, Google announced it would make a big change to ensure advertisers are only charged for display ads that are viewed.

During a keynote discussion at SMX East in New York, Brad Bender, vice president of product management of the Google Display Network said: “I’m pleased to announce that GDN is moving to 100% viewable. We’re going to migrate all of the CPMs in the system to viewable CPMs. All advertisers will be able to see viewable metrics so they can make better decisions.”

Bender told the audience the change will be rolled out to GDN users in the upcoming weeks. The change is likely to be received warmly by advertisers as there has been some concern over statistics (provided by Google) claiming 56 percent of online display ads never have the chance to be seen.

These ads are often not seen due to being low on the page or on a non-activated tab.

According to Marketing Land, Bender said Google has been working on the viewability issue and did not charge advertisers last year for over 70 billion impressions that went unseen.

For more on the change, read Google’s announcement on the Inside Adwords blog.

You can never stop learning when it comes to online marketing. Google’s Display Network is constantly being updated and you have to stay current in order to best utilize the tools at your disposal.

To help you do just that, check out Matt Van Wagner’s column at SearchEngineLand. He’s got the rundown of the latest updates and how they can help you.

Google reps have said that a good click-through-rate for AdWords is between two and five percent. There’s been no official suggestion for an acceptable conversion rate, however. Business2Community recently set out to remedy that oversight by conducting a thorough study of AdWords.

The first problem with such a study is how loosely defined ‘conversion’ is. Not all businesses require a sale to consider a successful conversion. In general, the average search network conversion rate for AdWords in this year’s third quarter was 5.63%. For the Google Display Network, that number dips slightly to 4.68%.

But to truly be able to gauge how well your business is performing with AdWords, you’ll need to look at the industry specific numbers. Follow the link to find the top 10 advertising industries broken down into their specific conversion rates and cost per conversion.

These are not official numbers from Google, but you can consider these a barometer for how well you’re utilizing AdWords.