Exclusions, they are a changin. Last week, Google Ads announced an important change for exclusion categories: “Games” content exclusion will be deprecated. This change is in line with Google Ads claim of streamlining content exclusion options they rolled out in 2018.

“Streamlining” covers all manner of sins. According to the Google Ads announcement, a consequence of the streamlining is the possibility of increased traffic from app games. Which makes sense: if you can no longer exclude games as a category, then the traffic from that category will be included. There is a simple solution, thereby still preventing your ads from showing on game apps: “Games” topic exclusion.

Google states the “Games” topic will be available for all campaign types and covers the same inventory content did as well as provides more coverage for web game content. Using the “Games” topic as an exclusion should, in theory, mitigate unwanted impressions coming from game apps.

This isn’t the first change to exclusion options and you betcha it won’t be the last. We grumble about any change Google throws our way as marketers are wont to do. But guess what? I like to think of it as a challenge. A game, if you will. If Google or any other vendor wants to throw a curve ball, I know that the insanely smart and creative people we work within this industry will be able to handle it. If you think back to not even a year ago when adsenseformobileapps.com was removed as an option, everyone was scrambling to get ahead of the changes. Our team was on it and in this webinar provided several options for advertisers.

So when you have used “Games” as a topic exclusion and you are not seeing the results you expected, let us know! We would love to explore the options with you.