As we all know, Google is switching from standard text ads to expanded text Ads format completely by 31st January, 2017. Beyond that, we won’t be able to both create or edit the old Ad format and hence it’s advisable to work on creating new Ads alongside the existing standard Ads so that it aids in smooth transition.
Expanded Text Ads: A Detailed Analysis
A typical expanded text ads format will be as shown below:
As you can see in the above image, the expanded text ads allows the advertisers to add more content and capture the attention of our target audience pretty well, particularly on the Mobile devices. It can be used on both the search and display network with all the support by all current AdWords tools.
Key Differences observed with the new expanded text ads are as follows:
- Larger Ads: The new expanded text ads are approximately 47% larger than the standard text ads.
- Two Headlines Fields: As shown in the image above, there are two headline fields provided instead of one and both the headlines allow us to enter upto 30 characters each. Both the headlines will be separated by a hyphen as shown in the example.
- One Description Field: Again as shown in the image above, there’s only one description field provided for us. The key difference here is that, Google has increased the character limit from two 35 character lines to single 80-character description field.
- Display URL: We don’t have to enter any display URL now as Google will by default include our domain and provides us an option to display the path beyond the domain with two 15 character fields.
- Mobile Optimized: The new expanded text ads are quite responsive in nature and hence Google has eliminated the option of creating two different ad copies targeting desktop and mobile devices.
- Increased CTR: Since now we have more room for texts and larger ads, it helps the advertisers to get greater visibility. This is even confirmed by Google where its early report says that there’s a 20% increase in CTR.
- Bulk Editing: The new option allows us to do bulk editing multiple ads at once same as how it is for that standard ads.
Updating existing standard text ads:
When you open the existing standard text ads, it will automatically switch to the new expanded text ads format and ask you to enter the 2nd headline. If you don’t want to convert the existing ones into expanded ones, then simply select switch back to standard text ads option and it will be as shown in the image below. This will for time being allow you to keep it but remember that it won’t work beyond 31st January, 2017.
Best Practices To Succeed With Google’s NEW Expanded Text Ads:
- Quality Scores: The quality score is and always be a very important factor in determining the ad position and cost. With new changes, it just became very much relevant and hence we should work on raising the quality scores ASAP.
- Extra Characters: Taking Advantage of extra character limits offering to make a very good compelling copy.
- Optimize Headlines: So far running and testing different ad copies helped us learn a very important lesson. The copies where strong USP with CTA performed significantly well compared to the ones without. Hence I suggest you all to use and test it.
- Headline Usage Tip: Headline one is very much important than the second one because Google may truncate the 2nd headline if we use more of pixelated characters as shown in the image below. Hence, its advisable to make use of headline 1 properly and check if its truncating the ads by using the Ad Preview tool.
- Don’t pause your old ads: As I mentioned before, it’s advisable to work on creating new Ads alongside the existing standard Ads so that it aids in smooth transition. Some accounts’ standard ads had better conversion % than the new ones. It’s not like the old ads are going to stop working. Unless we edit it or do something to it, it will always be running without any issues.
- Top keywords should be included in the display path fields: Including top keywords in the path fields will help in reassuring the target audience that they’re being taken to the desired landing page and not to a home page or irrelevant page. We have found that including top keywords in the path fields resulted in improved CTR and CVR.
- Ad extension should be updated: It’s a known fact that including the ad extensions will improve our ad’s CTR and QS. Since the ad copies are going to completely different with additional characters and messages, it’s important for us to check the ad extensions and update it in such a way that it includes some value proposition which wasn’t possible for us to include it in our ad copy.