What We See For PPC In 2023

Was 2022 really only 12 months? Some days it feels like 15 years passed in that time, Will Smith’s infamous slap feels like it happened eons ago (it was March 27 to save you a click or two). But here we are, yes, just another year older and another year wiser. 

Granular saw it all: we went on sabbaticals (a full month paid at that), we had children, we traveled the globe, and most of us got COVID at some point. But we also saw the digital landscape rapidly change. Smart Shopping is now Performance Max? Facebook is Meta? Twitter is…whatever it is? 

We keep our fingers firmly on the advertising pulse and, in spite of our collective marketing expertise totaling well north of 100 years, even our team of experts felt blindsided by many happenings in 2022. With that said, we look onward to the future, cautiously optimistic and forever adaptable. Here are our thoughts on the upcoming year!

Granular’s Top PPC Predictions for 2023

Anna – eCommerce & Programmatic

Advertising: I’m looking forward to seeing how much OTT/CTV advertising grows in the next year. We’ve already seen massive growth in the space since 2020, and with more people expanding their paid subscriptions to platforms like Netflix, I am excited to test out more publishers. Also more advertising potentially moving to programmatic since we have access to the third party publishers as Facebook (and others!) continue to take away some interest/detailed targeting. 

Personal: I moved to Madison in the fall of 2022, so I’m looking forward to exploring more – finding the best snowshoeing or cycling trails, great coffee shops and places to take Beans and hang out with my boyfriend. 

Chris – B2B & Lead Generation

Advertising: We’ve seen a lot of great things from Performance Max campaigns and also some not-so-great things. I’m eager to see how we will best be able to leverage Pmax to maximize returns for our client

Personal: Planning on seeing the Brewers play on the road at the following ballparks:

  • Progressive Field (Cleveland Guardians)
  • Nationals Park (Washington Nationals)
  • Guaranteed Rate Field (Chicago White Sox)
  • Choctaw Stadium (Texas Rangers)

Emily – Social Media Advertising

Advertising: In 2023, I am really looking forward to seeing how social media channels adapt to compete with TikTok. I see TikTok becoming a major player in digital advertising, but Meta and Google (YouTube), won’t let them gain any ground without a fight. In late 2022, we’ve already seen Meta prioritize vertical videos with Reels and YouTube investing in Shorts. I think only more can come. I am also very curious to see where Elon Musk takes Twitter. The ad platform needs serious help in my opinion but there is a lot of potential. If he can find a way to improve the UX and algorithm, I think Twitter could pull some serious digital advertising weight in the future. Wild Prediction – Elon only accepts Dogecoin as ad currency.

Personal: I am very much looking forward to my wedding and honeymoon in late 2023. It timed up perfectly with my Granular sabbatical so I will be able to take a month off work to enjoy these big life events with my family and future husband!

Grant – Digital Strategy & Brand Design

Advertising: In 2022 we saw plenty of brands rediscover their sense of fun after a tough couple of years by exploring quirky type, bright colors, and visual identity guides. So with that still trending and most algorithms and AI prioritizing creating a better user experience, I’m looking forward to see how the two work together to focus on the end users needs and desires for more connected, beneficial marketing and messaging all while building brand awareness/loyalty. 

Personal: This year, I really want to find someone, who isn’t my mother, that I can trust to be my emergency contact. On a more relatable note, the 2023 ski forecast is already looking spicy – so I am hoping to capitalize on that. 

Jenny – Local PPC & eCommerce

Advertising: It would be awesome to get more transparency into Responsive Search Ads. I think TikTok will make big moves for advertisers as their audiences grow. I’d like to see less cringy IG updates and for Mark to give us chronological order back. GA4 transition will have the biggest impact affecting most business owners struggling to find the data they used to see in UA. 

Personal: Hoping to find the motivation to complete unfinished house projects.  Getting better at taking more time to travel with my family. Excited that Sun Country is offering direct flights to Milwaukee for $49.             

Jordon – Head of PPC

Advertising: We’re going to maintain our Google Premier Partner status, which puts us in the rare minority of all agencies in WI – and for that matter, in the country.

We’re also going to “fight the power” and continue to stay ahead of the competition by pushing for what’s best for our clients and not giving in to ad platforms pushing us in their preferred direction. The biggest ad platforms continue to take away control and measurement, making it more difficult to drive efficiency through PPC. Our job is to fight for our clients, and we have found ways to squeeze more ROI out of less friendly PPC platforms in 2022.

Going into 2023 we’ll continue to diversify and find more ways to gain efficiency and scale by being at the cutting edge of new platforms, new DSPs, and expert levels of measurement to ensure our PPC efforts are the best available. Our large team of PPC experts makes this so much easier for our company to rapidly test and find solutions that others may never figure out. Other than that…enjoy our ads now that you’ve been on our website. You’ll see them EVERYWHERE!

Personal: I’m excited to share my first book with the world! Coming out in February, and depending on your knowledge of PPC, this could very well be the most (or least) educational PPC book ever written.

Justin – Local PPC & eCommerce

Advertising: I’m interested in seeing where Google expands tools for advertisers, hopefully with better SQRs and adding negative keywords to PMax campaigns, and where they remove controls we’ve grown accustomed to, like keywords Match Types (bold prediction: everything will be Broad Match by 2024…). I’m also excited to see Elon Musk run Twitter into the ground. 

Personal: My youngest starting 4K in the Fall. Getting both my boys more involved in sports and other activities. Watching my wife grow her career.  

Kelsea – Social Media

Advertising: Being passionate about the social media side of advertising, one of the things I’m looking forward to most in 2023 is seeing how TikTok improves its advertising abilities as it becomes one, if not the hottest social media channel at the moment. TikTok and Instagram are also focusing heavily on social commerce, and it’ll be interesting to see the effect that has on shopping and product ad formats on these platforms and the features they give advertisers. 

Personal: Being new to Granular, I’m looking forward to starting a new year at an amazing company with equally amazing people. My parents are also planning to retire in late 2023, and I’m looking forward to celebrating all of their hard work as they move down to the West Indies. Although I’ll miss them being local – I can’t wait to have an excuse to vacation in the Caribbean. 

Mac – eCommerce & Lead Generation

Advertising: I’m interested to see how Google handles the transition to GA4 from Universal Analytics and if GA4 will see any major updates before that change. I’m also interested to see how Performance Max campaigns evolve – will Google start giving more insights? Will we get negative keywords?

Personal: In year 2 of home ownership I’d like to do more updates around my house. I’m thinking a new deck would be nice. I’d also like to do some traveling. I’m not sure where yet but my wife and I have narrowed it down to “somewhere in Europe”. 

MacKenzie – Lead Generation & White Label Services

Hello, It’s a boy! I’ll share pictures later, but I’ll be out of office for the next couple of months! If you have any questions, please reach out to your account support or Jordon.

Mark – Search & Measurement

Advertising: My biggest one probably is the GA4 takeover and how much the platform will still change in 2023 pre and post-launch. As each day goes by I enjoy it a bit more and i’m excited to migrate more clients to it. Besides that, i’m really looking to expanding into more server-side measurement and how we can use Python and R to do deeper data analysis.

Personal: Because my biggest passion is scale modeling, I’d have to say the emergence of 1/16th scale models. They’ve been around before, but were never affordable. Now they are! I’m also excited to get into 3d printing so I can start printing some cool things for my home and my scale modeling. Hoping 2023 is a fun, peaceful (is it ever?) healthy year.

Meagan G – Lead Generation

Advertising: BeReal ads? I’m looking forward to seeing what new platforms we might get to advertise on in the coming year and what new social platforms will be developed as people are looking for new ways to make human connections. And you know us advertisers are going to try to get in on it.

Personal: I’m looking forward to taking reiki classes so I can get certified to do energy healing and bring some zen to my family, friends, and pets. 

Megan K – Local Event & Services

Advertising: In 2023, I am really looking forward to the growth of TikTok as a top advertising channel for social ads and getting more clients advertising there. I am also intrigued to see what additions and optimizations Google makes to Performance Max campaigns.

Personal: Mostly I’m looking forward to my dog turning 2 and *hopefully* exiting his puppy stage.

Sarah – Social Media & Ad Creative

Advertising: In 2023, I am looking forward to seeing what new platforms develop advertising. Will we see BeReal ads? How about some new platform that we don’t even know about yet? I am also looking forward to seeing what happens with the monstrosity that is Twitter. Clients are already concerned about continuing advertising there, so I wonder what 2023 will bring.

Personal: Personally, in 2023, I am looking forward to traveling. I plan on going to a place I have wanted to go to since I was in elementary school – Alaska. I can’t wait to finally fulfill that lifelong dream. I am also looking forward to new hikes, new books, new shows and movies, and MAYBE running a marathon.

Steve – Start Ups & Products

Advertising: Will 2023 be the year someone poses a meaningful threat to Google’s Search Ads business? By Google taking active steps (performance max, pushing broad match) to remove controls from search advertisers who only want to show search and shopping ads against keywords, someone like Amazon or Apple could realistically gain 1-3% market share within 12 months after launching their own search ads product. There already is a lawsuit (link) that alleges the agreement between Google & Apple to ensure Google is the default search engine on Safari violates antitrust laws. Also, Apple is already a major player in the digital ads business, with search ads through their app store generating 31 billion dollars in 2021 (link). It’s a logical progression for them to expand into search ads for the rest of the internet itself. I believe a major announcement is forthcoming on this front. A 1-3% market share sounds like a small number, but in 2021 Google made 209.49 billion from their ads business. So Apple being able to capture an incremental $2-$6 billion in search ads revenue is a big deal. It’s a much bigger deal for Google because their near monopoly on the search ads space showing signs of backsliding will have a major impact on Google’s parent company’s (Alphabet) stock. This would then have a negative cascading effect on the Google Ads product itself, potentially leading to a continued loss of search ad revenue to someone like Apple.

Personal: Our daughter is now three years old and our dog just turned one recently. Getting to see them both grow as individuals and as a pair is enjoyable, even with some of the frustrations that come from growing pains. I work to be in the present every day and enjoy all the moments, both the exciting ones and the mundane. 

Steven – Paid Media

Advertising: Interested to see what additional changes Google has throughout 2023 regarding targeting and reporting, with cookie deprecation delayed until mid-2024, and iOS14+. Additionally, what new tools will be provided that center around automation, smart bidding and enhanced conversions, not just for shopping campaigns, but traditional search.

Personal: Planning a trip to Thailand in spring 2023. Getting my son potty trained, enrolled in Pre-K and going on more adventures. Seeing where the economy goes, stock market/housing market/inflation/crypto. Making new friends with the Granular team : )

Tim – Amazon Ads

Advertising: I am hoping Google would provide more customization options with automated campaigns on the platform. The automation is nice to have, but we should at least be able to add negative keywords and customize search terms that we want to show for automated campaigns such as PMax.. I also think social media ads are going to take off next year and become more popular than ever. With social growing, I’m hoping the platforms would make setting up ads more user friendly. There are tweaks to each social platform that make them a pain to deal with. A good example is TikTok is allowing only 20 ads per ad set and the difficulty of linking your TikTok account to the clients.

Personal: I recently got married and moved from Illinois to Wisconsin this year. My main goal next year is to enjoy my first year of marriage and be able to adapt to the many changes happening in my life. I also want to get more involved in my community and be more physically active next year. Planning a trip to Glaicer National Park next summer that me and my wife are very excited for!

Jeremy – Channel Mix & PPC

Advertising: I’m looking forward to social media platforms providing better, and more private, conversion tracking methods. I would love to see solutions that tie everything together in order to better understand where to put ad dollars. Getting clients into GA4 will help provide some of these omni-channel insights.

Personal: The #1 thing I’m looking forward to is my growing since I’m expecting twins!  And, as a twin whose mom is a twin, it’s pretty neat that I get to experience it on the dad side. My goal in 2023 is to live in the present moment as much as possible and enjoy family, friends and work (no matter how many diapers I change). 

Mike – eCommerce

Advertising: The future of Google Shopping seems to be split into two camps: those fully trusting of Performance Max and the skeptics. At Granular, opinions and results are just as mixed, with a handful of accounts seeing great success and others experiencing a complete disruption of the marketing funnel due to the implementation of PMax. I’m very curious to see the evolution of strategies over the next year, whether Google injects more control over those or if advertisers revert back to manual bidding. The balance of product listing ads seems to hinge on this, so something has to give in 2023.

Personal: My wife and I have put our foot in the ground on living in our cramped one bedroom apartment, making it our mission to be in a house by at least the end of the year if not sooner. When my wife puts her mind to something in this manner, there’s zero chance she fails.

Cheers to the New Year! Tune in December 2023 to learn how utterly incorrect we were on all of the above!