Google kills Print Ads program

Google announced it plans to shut down its Print Ads service.

Google continues to trim off its underperforming services, this time cutting one that had been met with skepticism when it launched but nevertheless garnered some support.

On Tuesday, the search giant announced it would close its Print Ads service. The program launched in 2006 and was met with raised eyebrows because it meant Google, an online specialist, would be venturing into print. Print Ads allowed anyone with a Google AdWords account to buy advertising in the print editions of any newspaper that joined the program. AdWords is Google's online advertising platform.

While Print Ads started out with 50 newspaper partners, it now has more than 800, Google said.

Despite attracting those newspapers, many of which are desperate to find new ways to generate revenue, Print Ads apparently hasn't performed well. "While we hoped that Print Ads would create a new revenue stream for newspapers and produce more relevant advertising for consumers, the product has not created the impact that we -- or our partners -- wanted," Spencer Spinnell, director of Google Print Ads, wrote in a blog post announcing the closure of the service.

Google plans to shut down the service on Feb. 28.

Spinnell said that a team at Google will continue to investigate new ways to help newspaper companies. That's despite the company's sometimes-uneasy relationship with the publishing industry. Some publishers, particularly in Europe, have accused Google of copyright theft for displaying snippets of their content on sites like Google News without permission.

Google was building new features for Print Ads as recently as October, when it added an image gallery where users could find free photos to incorporate in their ads. But over the past several months, the bulk of the announcements on Google's "Let's Take it Offline" blog have been about new features in Google's TV and audio advertising services, with little mention of Print Ads.

Shutting down Print Ads appears to be part of the house cleaning that Google admitted to last week, when it announced it would close several other services including Google Video, Jaiku, Mashup Editor, Dodgeball, Catalog Search and Google Notebook.

"In the last few months we've been taking a long, hard look at all the things we are doing to ensure we are investing our resources in the projects that will have the biggest impact for our users and partners," Spinnell wrote in Tuesday's post. "By moving resources away from projects that aren't having the impact we want, we can refocus our efforts on those that will delight millions of users."

Despite Google's successes in recent years, the services closures show that it too is not immune to the economic meltdown. It also recently laid off 100 recruiters and consolidated some engineering offices.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Googleadvertisinggoogle advertising

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Nancy Gohring

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?