Less is More with Inbox Advertising


When logging into an email account many people find being bombarded with image heavy advertising distracting

Both Yahoo Mail and Microsoft Hotmail heavily advertise on their websites. Google's Gmail on the other hand uses text only ads that are less distracting and speed up loading speeds. The ads are selected as they come in by an automated system, based upon the words within the incoming message.

Gmail has now come up with a new ad matching systems that analyses user preference by looking at which keywords make someone open one ad over another. Google then adapts future ads in order to make the ads are relevant to them.  

Read the New York Times for more:

When Google introduced Gmail seven years ago, it didn’t copy Yahoo Mail or Microsoft’s Hotmail. Gmail was built for distraction-free speed. The ads were text-only, and so unobtrusive that you could forget they were even there.

In this respect, Gmail has been a retro service, resembling the text-only computing of ancient times, before mice and touch pads.

Google realized from the start that irrelevant ads would annoy its users. So it developed software that analyzed the words in an incoming message and then selected the seemingly most salient ads among those in its inventory.

Written by Randall Stross, May 14th 2011.


Google’s new ad matching system makes their advertising more relevant and less intrusive for the user. They have also announced that relevant static images may be included within their adverts. Surely their current text only adverts create a cleaner and less intrusive user experience? Google’s Senior Product Manager Alex Gawley emphasises that they will be moving cautiously on using images in order not to alienate users who are put off by image heavy ad content.

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