An ultimate Guide to know all about GSP Ads

Email Marketing is one of the most recommended media for generating leads for many businesses. It is also a preferred medium to increase customer retention and to offer deals and discount in product or services.

When you send an email to the customer, it does not guarantee that it will be shown on top of the customer’s inbox and it will go below when new email will come into the inbox. By GSP ads, we can solve this problem., GSP ads placed in the top of the Inbox and it appears differently. In this post, I am covering the following things about GSP ads-

  • What is GSP?
  • How to target users via Google sponsored Promotions?
  • What is the cost of GSP Ads?
  • Where GSP ads appear?
  • Benefits of GSP Ads?
  • GSP ad specification: formats, character limits and recommended image sizes
  • What are the GSP ad types?
  • Which industries must Use GSP ads?
  • Best practices and strategies for a Successful GSP ad Campaign
  • How to track GSP ads and how to do reporting?


1 . What is GSP ( Gmail Sponsored promotions)?

GSP ads are the special ads which are used to target users in their mailbox. GSP ads that they are placed in the top of the user’s inbox and look like an email, they expand in a full and as the variety of Ad.

2 . How to Target users via Google sponsored Promotions?

There are 5 types of standard targeting option available for GSP ads, although you can use the combination of these targeting methods to narrow your targeting.

(a) Display keywords – This is also known as contextual targeting, in this targeting option you can target users via keyword which is related to your products and services.

Things to keep in Mind-  Ads are shown based on the Broad match content so you don’t need to use the match types and it will show those users who have received a similar content or email in last 300 emails in their inbox or archived emails.               

(b) Locations – You can target by location, it must be city, country or a postal code.

Things to keep in mind- GSP ads can target only one location per campaign, so if you want to target different location then you must create a different campaign for that.

(c) Topics –  You can target the user by the topics which are based on the user’s active inbox.   

(d) Demographics Targeting – You can target users by their age, parental status, and gender, if you are targeting a small city and a small business owner then this targeting method can be very fruitful for you.

(e) Adwords Customer Match Targeting – If you have a subscriber’s email database and want to reach those specific users then Adwords customer match is the best targeting option for you. You can upload a list of email addresses and then target them with tailored ads.


Things to keep in mind – Gmail sponsored ads don’t support in-market audience, remarketing list hence the role of customer match becomes more important.  

3 . What is the cost of Gmail sponsored ads –

The cost of GSP ads are calculated as per cost per click basis, it means if a user clicks on your promotion and expands your ad then the advertiser has to pay for this click. The important thing to mind is the cost will be charged for first interaction for further clicks you will not be charged.

“Typically the cost per click is $0.05 or 3rs/ click. This CPC is based on my recent campaign and may vary as per the industry.”

4 . Where GSP ads appear?

GSP ads appear on both mobile and desktop, whereas in desktop it showed two Gmail ads compare to one ad spot in mobile devices.  The ads appear on the promotional tab, and only appear on free Gmail account, it means that a business which uses Google apps for business can’t be targeted via Gmail sponsored ads.

It looks like this in Gmail Inbox –


Once I clicked on the first Ad, it expands and looks like this –


5. Benefits of GSP Ads?

GSP ads are best suited for that business whose objective is to drive awareness, it means it is not for those businesses who need a direct response. Although the journey of a click to website conversion is a 3 step process, and the user knows what he is reading about products or services, the conversion chances are typically high.

” In my recent campaign, which I have created for the education industry, I got  70 conversions at a cost of 5950 INR. You can see that the cost per acquisition is around 85 rupees per query”


Apart from these, you can use GSP ads because-

  •         They are cost effective
  •         They are highly targeted

6 . GSP ad specification: formats, character limits and recommended image sizes –

There are 5 types of ads you can create in GSP ad campaign, all have its own functionality, and images sizes, let me explain all of these in below-

Standard GSP Ad Components-  

“Gmail Ad creation Image”

Logo_Size Advertiser name Subject line Description
140px * 140px Character limit 15 Character limit – 25 Character limit – 100

You can create 5 types of Gmail ads, each one has its own specialties and used for different purposes, you can use which suits best for your business –

  1. Gmail Image Template

If your focus is to engage users via the visuals and it is appealing then this format will best suit for your business. You can use an image with some text and call to action.

Recommended Image size- 650 Px  * 300Px



2 . Gmail Single promotion Template


A single promotion template comes with an additional headline, which can be up to 200 characters. The best part of this Gmail ad type is an advertiser can use video, or image with the product. If you are promoting a dentist who is promoting himself with an image or video and uses text to explain his services then this format is best for you.

Recommended image size- 300 Px* 200 Px


  1. Gmail Multi Product Template

This ad format best suited for retailers, e-commerce store because it features multiple products in a single ad, However, if you have multiple products you can also use this ad template. This ad type feature 6 different products, each image must be in the square format (180 PX *180 PX ), a title and call to action.


4 . Gmail Catalog Template

A hybrid of single promotion image template and multi-product template, A catalog template showcase images along with the text.

Main Image size- 650 Px * 300 PX

Product image size- 650 Px * 300 PX

Headline- 40 character


  1. Gmail Custom HTML upload

Custom HTML ads are the gold mine for the advertiser, it allows advertisers to place click to call feature or an HTML form embedded within the ad, It creates an opportunity to increase the conversion and generate calls directly. One thing is to keep in mind that a Custom HTML and is a ZIP folder that contains all ad files, below are some size limits for HTML ads –

  • Zip folder size must be lesser than 1.25 MB
  • Number of files in a folder must be less than 100 files
  • The file size must be less than 500 KB


7 . How to track GSP ads performance and how to do reporting?

The performance metric which matters most for the advertiser is none other than conversion, but apart from this metric, there is 3 other metric which is used to measure the performance of GSP ads.

Saves – The number of times a Gmail users saves ad to their inbox

Forwards – The number of times the Gmail Ad was forwarded to someone else by the user.

Click to Website – Number of clicks which leads to the landing page.

8. Best practices and strategies for a Successful GSP ad Campaign-

Here are some strategies or best practices you should follow to get more conversion and help you to reduce the cost of acquisition –

(a) Target competitors domain –  This is the best thing if you want to take a competitive advantage, and help you to leverage the competitor’s effort by compelling headline and call to action.

(b) HTML form adverts –  Although it was a little bit tricky for a person having lack of web designing knowledge, but this ad format will directly generate the leads.

(c) Segment campaign by device- To measure the performance campaign, use segment so that you can measure how ads are performing on different devices.

(d) Custom combination – Using custom combination, can help you to reach specific audience by narrowing your audience, you can use keyword + Topic, Topic + interest and any other combination for better results from GSP ads.

(e) Use Video in Ads – Videos are the most engaging content in the online world. you can use quality video so that user can engage with it.

(f) Don’t Forget to target your own domain – Targeting your own domain will help you to reach your existing visitors who have received your email in last 300 mails, by using it you can easily retarget your potential customers.

(g) Create urgency to increase the Open Rate – Make compelling headline and create urgency like, “limited time offer”, “discount ends soon”, “Limited seats! ” etc to increase open rate.