Lithys 2016: Google Advertiser Community - Community Design of the Year

Lithys 2016: Google Advertiser Community - Community Design of the Year

googlelogo_color_272x92dp.pngCompany: Google

Entry submitted by: Yuri Kleban (Program Manager)

Community: Google Advertiser Community

Lithy category:  Community Design of the Year 


Our mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful. Our team supports many products such as AdWords, Google My Business and Google Analytics that help fund our company's moonshots.


Our Community Goals


The Google Advertiser Community exists to support our customers at scale by providing a platform to have their questions answered and to give them an opportunity to learn more about our product/s. This is done in a friendly and Googley way by our Community Members, Community Managers, Moderators and wide network of Google Top Contributors.

We redesigned our community interface with three goals in mind. First, we had evolved from a product-focused community to a customer-focused community, and thus needed one place that provided a complete journey for an SMB, from getting their business online through GMB, then understanding their online performance through Google Analytics, to leveraging the marketing power of AdWords to increase the success of their businesses.


Second, through customer feedback we understood that there were issues with content findability and we needed a UI that supported easier content discovery in multiple formats (articles, videos, events). Finally, our customers are increasingly mobile; our community had to look good on smartphones and reflect Google’s Material Design standards.


The Advertiser Community's goals of education and supporting our customers at scale is done through three unique sections:


  1. "Product Categories", where users can ask questions or discuss any area of our supported products and have open conversations with Google Employees, Community Managers, our Top Contributors, and each other;
  2. "Learn" , where customers can read in-depth articles about various themes, features and products, and
  3. "Events", where users can find upcoming (and watch past) live events broadcasted via Google Hangouts on Air and embedded in the Community.

Google aims to provide a first class customer support experience regardless of channel, and the Advertiser Community aligns with our brand of delighting customers. Now, our Community allows us to do it at scale.


Our unique community design


Throughout the redesign process we ensured that Lithium's responsive design was in line with Google's Material Design standards (think mobile first). Additionally, we created various features that our users have been asking for. A few examples:


  1. Guide Me’s- The Guide Me buttons are a unique way of helping users decide what to do next, and to drive further engagement on the Community.
  2. Notifications- Our users are active social network users too, and as any social network users have developed a strong need to stay up-to-date with what's happening on the platforms they engage on. We're now keeping them updated real-time by providing in-platform notifications when someone engages with their content or shares something of interest to them
  3. Experts- For our Top Contributors and Rising Stars, we dedicated a page to showcase all the hard work they do. We also ensured users know when an Expert is engaging with them on the Community by labelling them with distinct badges, and calling out the experts involved in all threads clearly next to the conversation. Users can also look for conversations where an expert has participated in through unique icons on each board.
  4. My Favorites- Our users love what they see, and when they see what they love they need a way to easily find it again. We've made it very easy for our users to mark content they want to get back to by adding "My Favorites"


How we executed our community design


The Google Advertiser Community redesign took place over the course of 10 months, with hard work from many individuals; the Google team is a Global team with members in 6 Google offices globally who worked closely with Kate and Kaela, as well as the rest of the the Lithium team. This process went through the following stages:


  • User data analysis from previous user studies
  • Stakeholder interviews within the company and top contributors
  • Design workshop
  • 3 rounds of mocks and wireframes
  • Numerous feedback iterations
  • Internal marketing, policy, legal, trademark sign offs
  • User Acceptance Testing (UAT)
  • Implementation Days


 Our  design excellence results


  • Doubled the traffic (as we brought more products into our communities), 2x our pages viewed per person & doubled our mobile traffic for most communities.
  • Interesting fact: traffic took an initial hit because of the migration to a new URL (SEO), but we recovered as visitors were more engaged (more sessions per user)      


















 Profile Page







Lithium Alumni (Retired)
Status changed to: 2016 Lithy Submission

I've always admired the Google Ad Words Community -- not just for design, but for the framework behind it. I love the products / learn / events breakout. Great work!

Lithium Alumni (Retired)

@lilim- looks like someone has your vote when online voting takes place May 3-10! 

Lithium Alumni (Retired)

Can I say how much I LOVE the new responsive design?  And for all 10 communities -- wow!!


Wishing you and the team LOTS OF LUCK -- I'm pulling for you!


See you in a few weeks!



Love the new look of the advertiser Communities! Definitely a BIG VOTE!

There are still many (!) improvement possibilities - but it's better than before:-)


Thank you, @lilim@admigo@Diana!


Appreciate your kind words and feedback. We are very excited and proud of this new redesign - it was a fantastic team effort between Google & Lithium.


Yes, there is definitely room for more improvements, and we are collating a big feature list for the near future 🙂

Great look and feel. Lots of improvements so far! Definitely More usable and neat 😉
Lithium Alumni (Retired)
Status changed to: 2016 Lithy Finalist