Google recently implemented some changes to how AdWords operates. Our last blog post provided an overview of the new call tracking changes, we now present you with an overview of the expanded text ads which came into effect at the end of January 2017.
What is changing?
- You will not be allowed to edit or create the standard text ads in AdWords at all.
- The Headline characters have been increased from 25 characters to two headlines of 30 characters each.
- The two description lines of 35 characters each can now accommodate one description line of 80 characters.
- The usual display URL will now allow you to have two path fields for the display URL of 15 characters each.
Standard text ads that are part of running campaigns will still display, but any ads that require adjustments or new ad campaigns can only be established as an expanded text ad.
Given the rapid rise of mobile compatibility, you will be thrilled to know that the new expanded text ads are compatible for mobile advertising as well as display text ads. The ads will act in the same way as standard text ads, except that they allow for more characters and take up more real estate in search results, but also offer more visibility with the double headlines.
Semantica Digital’s Paid Search and Business Development expert Kyle Pretorius believes that it is a good direction for Adwords to be moving in. He explains that while there seem to be slightly higher Cost per Click’s (CPCs) for expanded text ads compared with standard text ads, the character increase ultimately means that advertisers are able to better portray brand messaging and provide more detailed information to target audiences.
How to make the most of expanded text ads
Google has made the following suggestions for making the most of your expanded text ads. Expanded text ads share a number of the best practices you’re already familiar with in text ads. But with almost 50% more ad text available and an additional headline, expanded text ads provide more opportunity for you to connect with users and drive more, qualified clicks to your website.
But with almost 50% more ad text available and an additional headline, expanded text ads provide more opportunity for you to connect with users and drive more, qualified clicks to your website.
- Rethink the messaging of your ad. It can be tempting, but don’t simply add a second headline to your existing ads. Consider the entire message that you want to present, taking into account all parts of your new ad.
- Take advantage of your character limits. Expanded headline fields increase the clickable space of your ads, and allow you to communicate more to someone who’s searching before they decide whether to click through to your site.
- Focus on optimizing your headlines. People are most likely to read the headline of your ad. When viewed on the search results page, your ad’s headline fields are combined using a hyphen, “-”. On mobile, the headline may wrap beyond the first line. Consider the different ways that your headline may show when writing your ad to make sure that your ad is compelling and easy to read on different devices.
- We suggest Creating 2 to 4 ads per ad group. Instead of editing your existing text ads, try supplementing your existing text ads with new expanded text ads. Doing so can help maximize your performance. Google suggests creating 3 to 5 ads per ad group.
- Use ad extensions. Including information below your ad like additional deep links into your website or your business location has been shown to increase your ad’s performance. Get started
- Experiment with ad variations. AdWords tools that support experimenting with different ad text, like campaign drafts and experiments, are fully compatible with expanded text ads. We recommend trying out different variations on your expanded text ads to see which perform best for your business.
More resources, such as Adwords Best Practices, can be found here. But if this still doesn’t answer all your questions, feel free to get in touch with us and we will happily answer any questions that you still have.