An increasing number of social media are trying to make their platforms more open to both users (particularly mobile users) and advertisers, the most prominent of which being Google (GOOG ): nearly half of the trillions of searches that are run on Google.com are now being conducted from mobile devices. In order to accommodate its search audience's growing shift towards using mobile devices instead of desktops, Google has announced that it is updating AdWords; the update will result in larger ads, which change shape to adjust the screen size of any mobile device, being placed on search results pages (notably ads for local businesses on Google Maps). Text advertisements are also being given more space, with AdWords now allowing five more characters per headline and forty-five more characters in each description. However, the new changes extend further: marketers now only need to provide Google with a headline, description, image, and a URL, and Google will automatically design an ad that will fit the screen of any mobile device, while simultaneously appearing natively embedded on the site of one of its publisher sites or apps involved with the Google Display Network. These changes appear promising: "Based on early testing," Google's AdWords team has stated, "some advertisers have reported increases in clickthrough rates of up to 20 per cent compared to current text ads."
But Google isn't the only company adjusting how it implements it space: Twitter (TWTR ), Snapchat, and Facebook (FB ) are also attempting to broaden their platforms. Twitter is planning to expand its 140-character limit by eliminating usernames from the total count. The logic behind this change is that including usernames in the character limit can impede conversations among multiple users from happening effectively. Tweets will also be more "public", in that messages addressed to someone using the "@" symbol will become generic. Twitter has announced that it has other, more minor alterations that it plans to make; however the increased character limit is the only one that has been made public. Snapchat, on the other hand, is planning to launch its "Sweet" channel, which will implement and draw on other social media sites such as Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.
Facebook is after even more ambitious ends, aiming to power out all of the advertising across the Internet. Approximately 1.65 billion people now use the social media platform every month; a total of 3.17 billion people use the Internet globally (as of 2015). Facebook has announced that it will assist marketers in showing ads to all of its users who visit websites and use applications in its Audience Network. Although the change appears to be relatively small, it indicates that Facebook will soon be helping to sell and place a much larger percentage of the video and display advertisements that appear throughout the Internet. The move also sets up Facebook in direct competition with Google - a pattern that can be expected to continue, as social media platforms attempt to increase their breadth in an increasingly mobile market.