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Giant ad company (Google) offers tool assessing worth of ads

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Google has launched a new calculator to let advertisers work out if their mobile spots are worth the money, complete with whizzing graphics and condescending video to explain the idea.

Called "The Full Value Of Mobile" the calculator takes in the results from Google's Click Type Report, which can be generated from the AdWords control panel, then calculates what those clicks were worth in mobile sales, theoretically telling the advertiser if the spots are paying for themselves.

There's a fair bit of estimating involved too, with some numbers based on the user's own guesses, and Google admits it's a first crack at the problem, but it is a slick interface there's a jolly video for the hard of thinking.

Despite the pretty visuals the system is far from perfect - exporting a text document from AdWords and uploading it the calculator is hardly a seamless experience, and talking to AdAge Google's head of mobile strategy admitted there's work to be done, but it’s a first step in helping advertisers work out what works on mobile. Though asking an advertising company which ads work would seem rather like something only a very credulous person would do. Indeed in some ways this whole thing seems more like Google advertising itself to advertisers than anything else.

Google has been trimming all sorts of unprofitable services (goodbye Google Reader, farewell Blocked Sites) as the focus comes back on the advertising which makes the company money. Mobile advertising is recognised as the next big thing not only because an increasing proportion of internet traffic is ending up on a smartphone screen, but also because phones are so personal they're considered the ideal platform from which to make us buy stuff.

That's in part thanks to the lack of advertising currently gracing the smallest screen, something which is already changing with tools like this one only hastening the process. ®

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