For customers who no longer want to see a certain display ad, [x] marks the spot. Google has announced a new icon, known as "mute this ad", for many ads appearing on the Google Display Network.
To "mute" an ad, users can click on a small [x] located in the top right corner. When a user clicks on the [x], he or she will receive the "Ad Muted" confirmation and no longer see ads from that particular campaign – though the same or a very similar ad could show up from a different campaign or ad company.
For advertisers, it doesn't seem like Google has any plans to share the number of times ads have been muted.
Google is first rolling this out with their remarketing ads, which is good news for users who find those ads a little creepy. Google is hoping that the feedback conducted from the first batch of users subjected to this will help improve the relevancy of ads you see over time.
I think this is the step in the right direction for Google Advertising, giving users the ability to control the ads and ad experiences that are put in front of them. By doing this an filtering out the people that don't want to see them, Google doesn't have to waste inventory and clicks on people who have no interest in the products. Instead they use this data for future ads that will be served to you.
This seems like a smart move from Google. What do you think?