It’s no secret that there have been big changes to the digital advertising landscape recently. Here are a few of the biggest changes to digital advertising in the past year and how they could affect your small business.

  • Targeted Ads Aren’t as Targeted
  • More Competition Makes It Harder to Stand Out
  • Pay-Per-Click Keeps Getting More Expensive

Targeted Ads Aren’t as Targeted

In 2021, iOS 14.5 shook up the digital advertising scene with App Tracking Transparency—an update that allowed users to prevent apps from tracking their behavior across their devices. This change hit big name advertising spaces—especially Facebook—hard.

Before this change, Facebook ads used comprehensive targeted advertising, but now that users can turn off tracking, Facebook cannot collect as much valuable information, meaning their targeted ads have become less accurate. Why does this matter? If you spend money on Facebook ads, there’s a chance that it’s being wasted on consumers that don’t need or want what you are offering.

More Competition Makes It Harder to Stand Out

Despite digital advertising platforms becoming less effective, online competition has increased drastically in the last few years. This is mostly due to businesses shifting to digital spaces in response to the pandemic. While more businesses try to advertise online, the number of platforms for them to advertise on hasn’t changed—with one notable exception.

TikTok took off during the pandemic, and the competition for ad spaces followed. The video-sharing platform has shown us a lot about what the future of advertising could look like, and compelling, short-form content is becoming more and more important to marketers who are trying to stand out in a crowded digital space.

Pay-Per-Click Keeps Getting More Expensive

Of course, if more people are looking to use a service, that service is going to become more expensive. Social media advertising has become significantly more expensive since the pandemic, and prices only seem to be increasing. This has caused some advertisers to switch their focus to other venues like streaming and TV, but that is far from a sustainable solution for local businesses trying to get the most out of their ad campaigns.

What to Do Instead

Skyrocketing prices, steep competition, and ineffective targeting often make paid advertising unsustainable for small businesses. Your digital marketing success shouldn’t be dependent on outbidding your competitors for ad space.

Instead, you can improve your business’ online performance and drive sustainable traffic without breaking the bank thanks to local SEO. Start by optimizing your website for local search and improving your Google Business Profile to start climbing your local search results organically.

Want to see what focused local search and a small business website can do for you? Local Search Fuel by Hurrdat is an affordable, turnkey solution for small businesses that need help in local search results. Contact Local Search Fuel to get started today!