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In Leverage

By Adrian Arroyos

AdWords Expanded Text Ads Are Live

On 26, Jul 2016 | In Leverage | By Adrian Arroyos

What Are Expanded Text Ads?

Google first announced expanded text ads (ETAs) back in May, during the annual Google Performance Summit. The new format is aimed at helping advertisers provide more information to mobile users, which is where most PPC traffic is currently being generated. We started seeing the option for creating ETA’s in Client AdWords accounts this morning, which was a nice surprise for our team.

Classic Text AdsExpanded Text Ads
Headline: 25 char
Description 1: 35 char
Description 2: 35 char
Total: 95 char
Headline 1: 30 char
Headline 2: 30 char
Description: 80 char
Total: 140 char

Guitar Center was an early adopter of the ETA format, and their digital marketing director, Robert Spears, reports “more than a 2X increase in CTR” for non-brand campaigns. A side-by-side example of classic ads v. the expanded text ad format appears below:

Google expanded text ads example: Guitar Center

While the increased character count is the obvious plus (now as long as a tweet), there are other reasons for the performance boost:

  1. Longer lead-in make is possible to connect keywords and marketing messages
  2. Ads on phone can occupy slightly more screen real estate (make sure to use site links and all available ad extensions to maximize visibility)
  3. Regardless of ad position, organic text ads are now pushed further out of view

Other features that are currently rolling out:

  • Separate Device Bidding Adjustments – Previously, advertisers could set a base bid amount for desktop searches and use the mobile bid adjustment to increase or decrease bids for users on mobile devices (% up or down). Some advertisers are now seeing the ability to set the adjustment individually for all platform types: desktop, mobile and tablet. This will provide you with the ability to tune your budget toward the highest-impact class of devices.

    Google Device bid adjustments

  • Responsive Display Ads – Advertisers using the Google Display Network can now make use of a new type of ad called Responsive Display Ads. Instead of the traditional fixed size image or rich-media ads of the past, these are auto-generated by Google from advertiser provided information including a headline (long and short versions), description and URL.

With so much changing, it’s time to revisit your AdWords account and take full advantage of these improvements.

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