You know what it’s like. You’ll be idly browsing online and take a look at a product you think seems interesting. You decide that, really, spending £55 on a new waffle maker isn’t a priority right now, so resist the temptation, only for that very same waffle maker to follow you around every corner of the internet for months on end, mocking you, taunting you, screaming the words ‘BLUEBERRY AND MAPLE SYRUP IS A NICE COMBINATION ISN’T IT?’ aggressively in your face.
It continues to follow you even after you’ve inevitably caved and bought the thing. This is your life now. Your online experience will be constantly flanked by little pictures of waffle makers, until you look at another product enough times that the process starts all over again.
However, GOOD NEWS, because Google have announced a new service which allows you to mute these annoying ads at just the click of a button.
The ads we’re talking about are what Google call ‘Reminders’, which is a friendlier way of putting it, and they have added a new option to their Ads Settings website which allows you to mute adverts for particular products at will.
If you go to the Reminders section of the site, you will see a list of the companies that are currently displaying ads to you, and you can toggle them on and off simply by hitting the little X next to their names.
It may be that you want to keep some of them on, as you genuinely want to buy the product, but are just waiting for your next paycheck, but this should be particularly useful for when you’ve already bought something and don’t need it chasing you from website to website any longer.
Google have also updated their ‘Mute this ad’ function, which allows you to immediately turn off adverts you don’t like at the source.
The function has existed since 2012, but it now allows you to turn off an ad on all devices connected to your Google account, meaning an advert you’ve got rid of on your phone won’t continue to display on your tablet or desktop - it’s all synced up.
All of this gives us a bit more control of what we do and don’t see with regards to online shopping, but it of course has benefits to Google too - otherwise they wouldn’t be doing it.
The more your ads are tailored to things you actually want to buy, the more you’re likely to spend. Good luck out there.
(Images: iStock / Google)