Google Tests "Listen Now" Ads for Music Searches

Google is testing "Listen Now" ads with the likes of digital music services Spotify, Rhapsody, and Beats Music, the Wall Street Journal reports.

A Google representative confirmed the music ad tests.

When consumers search for musicians via Google on desktop or mobile devices, the display ads appear grouped together under a "Listen Now" label and promote services that also include Google Play.

The ads appear within Google's Knowledge Graph.

When SEW tested out the function, it appears results are most often displayed for Google Play, followed by Rhapsody and Spotify for artists as varied as Cher, Diana Ross, Conway Twitty, Ludacris, and Megadeth.

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Google began testing the ads earlier this year, the representative says.

According to the WSJ, music services were previously able to buy similar ads, but the grouping, display, and labeling are new. This is a continuation of an ongoing effort that includes "Watch Now" ads that appear in Google searches for movies and TV shows.

"We're happy to help users quickly find legitimate sources for their favorite movies, music, and more via Google search," Google's spokesperson writes in an email. "As always, the ads are ranked according to a variety of factors, including: bid, relevance, and click-through rate."