Google Assistant Rolls Out Rich Answers, Tools, and Ads

Google updates are coming hard and fast this month, and they’re not about to slow down on the mobile front. The search engine giant has announced that it’s rolling out “rich answers” in search results for Google Assistant.

That means images, stock reports, and event listings with locations and rich media will be available to Android users when they search the web via Google Assistant voice search, mimicing the results we see when we search on desktops.

Not only that, Google Assistant now officially features ads as well as new tools for Google Assistant Users, including bubble level, music metronome pacer, and tip calculator.

What do these developments mean for the progression of SEO and search listings? Let’s dive in and find out.

Google Assistant Search Results: What’s New?

Prior to the update, Google Assistant displayed search results for queries with text only. The featured snippets that are usually found on Google’s results pages were nowhere to be found. While Google Assistant provided straightforward answers to user questions that were short and to-the-point, the search results on Assistant were a far cry from the ones we’re used to seeing on desktop SERPs.

Google recognised this gap and have now incorporating images, snippets and scraped information from relevant websites. This makes Google Assistant query results much more comprehensive than ever before. While word-based answers are still displayed on a card much like a snippet on a SERP, Google has added new interfaces for categories like events and stock results, now complete with graphs and pictorials that supplement the existing information.

Google’s goal for the update is to present key information quickly and easily, thereby making the user’s experience both more efficient and more fulfilling. Where a query would benefit from a wider field of results, then a page with the normal search results will be displayed, including ads.

Ads on Google Assistant Results

Now that the results on Google Assistant display rich results, Google has also made the official announcement that ads may be displayed at the top of the page of results where relevant.

ads on Google assistant search results

This is a huge game changer for Google, as it adds another advertising platform for marketers on the Google ecosystem. The tech giant previously announced that the Assistant is available on roughly 1 billion devices (including smartphones and Google Home devices), so the demographic for voice search and results are steadily growing.

As we move forward, more focus will most likely need to be dedicated to optimising websites for these search methods.

Ads, Rankings, and Campaigns: What Should We Know?

In light of this news, there are a few things we should be keeping an eye on. Namely:

  • Snippets and PPC. With the rise of snippet information and scraped media in normal SERPs causing a decline in clicks and conversions, we can only assume that as we move forward the rich media displays in Google Assistant results will cause a decline in Pay-Per-Click ad campaigns.
  • Click-Through Rates. Ads that make it into the top spot of the Assistant Ads page may have a much higher click-through rate than results searched normally through the engine. If users notice ads taking up a larger chunk of the mobile screen, it’s possible that they will click immediately rather than scroll to look for more results.
  • Migration to Voice Search. Due to the number of devices Google Assistant is now available on, the number of search queries conducted via voice will likely increase over the coming months and years. In that event, Google’s algorithms have a high probability of shifting to accommodate metrics that also cater more to Voice Search, such as how conversational content is.

Moving forward the most important thing to do is to keep an eye on the progression of Voice Search use and Google Assistant use for searches. This is because it is going to impact on how Google writes its algorithms, and therefore how businesses need to alter their ad campaigns and content to fit the shifting metrics.

Writing conversational and flowing content that easily makes sense to readers remains best practice, and the ever-shifting digital landscape may offer more opportunities for businesses to advertise in ways that keep up with the changes in search patterns.

Keep up with all things SEO and SEM

Sign up to the Pure SEO Newsletter and have the latest updates broken down into plain English and delivered to you every week. Learn from the New Zealand experts in Search Engine Optimisation.

Courtney-Dale Nel

Courtney is a Content Writer on the Pure SEO team. They have a Bachelor in Behavioural Psychology, way too much experience working with pigeons, and a fondness for nachos that rivals most marriages.

Digital Marketing Agency

Ready to take your brand to the next level?
We are here to help.