The advertising business will remember the years 2020 and 2021 as a time when everyone had to think outside the box, shifting a lot of their creative work from traditional to digital.

PPC/SEM trends were set on a predetermined course prior to the epidemic. The most pressing concerns included a future without third-party data, the need to increase PPC automation, and how to adapt to Google’s analytics reporting tool modifications.

These issues remain valid, but they now exist alongside other significant improvements in PPC marketing. Let’s take a look at some of the most crucial PPC trends influencing local and global businesses in 2021.

1. Mobile-First Isn’t Going Away

Google first announced mobile-first indexing a few years ago. Google now crawls, indexes, and ranks websites using smartphone user agents, after prioritizing desktop search for more than two decades.

This is reasonable. According to Statcounter Global Numbers’ analysis on Desktop vs. Mobile vs. Tablet Market Share in March 2021, Mobile has a 54.22 percent market share compared to Desktop’s 42.93 percent (for more information, see the Philippines stats).

To reach all consumers, you’ll need mobile and desktop-optimized versions of your site, but first think about your mobile ad campaigns that display on Google Search, Google Discover, and social media sites. Build your link-building methods around your mobile website silo, but inbound links to your desktop website should still exist.

2. Search Engine Marketing Is Still The King

Global ad spending in the digital advertising market is predicted to climb 12.2% to US$398,762 million (or US$398.7 trillion) between 2020 and 2021, according to Statista. It’s unsurprising that search advertising will take home 43% of the pie: US$171,641 million.

In 2020, 6.95 billion individuals used mobile phones around the world; this number is predicted to rise to 7.1 billion in 2021. As people look to bank, shop, send money, and locate the most up-to-date information about businesses they want to transact with, SEO and search engine marketing (SEM) will be more vital than ever.

3. Conversions Can Be Attained Through Video Advertising

In 2021, this will be a major SEM trend.

Big firms used to traditional television advertising, out-of-home (OOH), or digital out-of-home (DOOH) had to rethink their 2020 budget allocations. In the Philippines, one week after ABS-free-to-air CBN’s operations were shut down in May 2020, average TV viewership dropped by 24-30%. Outdoor advertising visibility was also curtailed due to restricted mass movement and a restriction on big gatherings.

More and more corporate and FMCG brands are turning to YouTube to run continuous 15-second ads or short, highly memorable campaigns in the 6-second bumper ad format.

Google and YouTube welcome DIY videos and have even created their own tool, the YouTube Video Builder, to help businesses.

You’re now one click away from a soft or hard conversion as a PPC advertiser, whether it’s a sign-up, enquiry, or link to a product that can be purchased online. Call-to-Action overlays can direct visitors to specific products, services, or landing pages.

4. The Use of Social PPC Advertising Is Growing

The other major PPC marketing trend for 2021 is this. PPC advertising has embraced social media in a significant way. Paid media buyers and specialists are investing in Facebook and Instagram advertising, and there are numerous new platform alternatives for display advertisements and retargeting. Advertisers don’t have to worry about ad-blockers (at least for now); it’s paid social advantage over display ads.

Do you want to cultivate B2B or B2C consumers without interfering with the user experience? Using Sponsored Tweets/Posts with call-to-action buttons on Twitter and LinkedIn. LinkedIn, a powerful tool for corporate branding and networking, offers traditional ads as well as the ability to nurture audiences with meaningful, downloadable information.

Have you seen something on Shopee, Lazada, or your favourite branded shopping app that you want to buy but haven’t yet? Viber is being used by brands to interact and remarket their products in group conversations, on the Call page, and in the user directory interface.

Many more, such as TikTok, Telegram, and Pinterest, are joining the fray and monetizing their services.

5. PPC Automation Is Increasing

Human participation is still required for PPC ad management and cost planning. PPC marketing automation will increasingly be used to experiment with bid management, ad creatives and copy designs, and budget spends. Data-driven keyword research, A/B testing, and smart bidding strategy are still specialist-driven, but PPC marketing automation will increasingly be used to experiment with bid management, ad creatives and copy designs, and smart bidding strategy.

It will become easy for both large and small firms to advertise online without being overly regulated. This can be used by e-commerce enterprises to promote adverts on hundreds or thousands of products.

In the big view, this means allowing programmatic PPC advertising optimization. It allows advertisers to target specific audiences and expand their reach beyond Search in order to reach more potential customers.

6. Access To Search Term Information Is Limited…

Google has been restricting the quantity of search term information it offers through Google Ads since September of last year. Since then, only terms that were searched by a “substantial number of people” have been included in search term reports.

Google claims that its new reporting method aids in the identification of high-potential new search phrases. It also recommends utilising negative keywords to avoid paying for clicks on search terms that aren’t relevant to you.

This new reporting prevents your paid professionals from experimenting with potentially useful low click/low volume terms. It also raises the possibility of ad spend leakage.

Yes, there are some alternatives, such as UberSuggest and SEMRush’s organic search reports, for obtaining this type of search data.

Industry observers aren’t happy about it, but it’s the way things are going.

7….Also, the Shift to Event-Focused Analytics

Google is in the process of upgrading its Analytics platform to Google Analytics 4 (GA4 for short) (GA4). Although no timetable has been set for the old Universal platform to be phased away, new accounts and properties can now only be created on GA4’s new platform.

Google Ads is getting digital marketers used to the eventual elimination of page visit and session data, and refocusing our efforts on utilising Google Tag Manager to build up Events.

The upside of these changes is Google’s offer to deliver AI and machine-learning-driven metrics to help businesses better understand audiences and the buyer’s journey — a pivot away from third-party cookie data that will be phased out shortly but hasn’t happened yet.