Utilizing One of the Greatest Ad Changes: Extended Text Ads

September 9, 2016 | 4 min read
By Tony Park

The global shift of mobile use for product research and purchasing has caused Google to make one of the biggest changes we’ve ever seen to its advertising platform. For years, digital advertisers have lived under the restricting hold of the 25-35-35 rule for ad characters. We’ve grown accustomed to shortening headlines and cramming value statements into an abrupt handful of words.

Finally, the silent prayer we recited to ourselves every time we drafted AdWords copy has been answered. Google has decided to give us an additional headline and extend the character limit for both by five characters. It has also condensed the description to one line and 80 characters long, turning the 25-35-35 rule into the 30-30-80 rule for Extended Text Ads. Never forget that digital advertising is always evolving. It’s up to you to recognize the changes and adapt so you can make the most of them.

Headlines Should Be Your No. 1 Focus

People read the headline first; sometimes it’s the only thing they read, and now we have two of them! Allow the headlines to be the meat and potatoes of your ads. Act as if the description line doesn’t exist and you want to get the most important information to consumers with just the headlines. Here are a few suggestions to keep in mind while constructing headlines for Extended Text Ads:

  • Use Headlines That Complement Each Other

Now that we’re dual-headlining, we want to include two statements that work together to satisfy the search query and tell the consumer why they should purchase your product or service. In my opinion, you should play with these combinations of headlines:

Product Specific Keyword – Call-to-Action

Extended text ads 1

Product Specific Keyword – Value Statement

Extended text ads 2

Question? – Call-to-Action

Extended text ads 3

For General Branded Campaigns:  Brand Name Keyword – Mission Statement

extended text ads 4

Basically, you don’t want two of the same elements for both headlines or elements that don’t fit well together. Play with these elements and find combinations that work best for your account.

  • Try to Fit in Those Long-Tail Keywords

We have the room to do it, so why not try? This should improve the quality score and help focus your ad around a particular search query.

  • Watch Out for Truncated Headlines

Look in AdWords Previewer to make sure your ad’s headlines aren’t going to be truncated when presented on certain devices. They usually state that if it looks okay in the previewer, then it should appear similarly on most devices.

Enhance Your Ads With the Longer Description Space

Descriptions should be the dessert of your ad. They are there to top it all off and further entice the viewer to make the decision to click and convert. It is your extra chance to add value to your product or service, create a connection with the viewer and let them know why your site is the perfect place to visit to get what they need.

  • Be More Concise With the Extra Character Space

AdWords’ Extended Text Ads now allow you a little more freedom with the extended, 80-character limit, and the change to having it on one line allows the advertiser to flow with a more succinct idea or thought. Take advantage of the opportunity by writing more creative copy and providing more specific examples of why you’re the best option.

  • It May Help to Treat Them Like Meta Descriptions

If you’re having a difficult time deciding how to approach your ads’ descriptions, or if you want your ads to be more informational, it may be easier to treat them like a page’s meta description. Write something descriptive and creative and try to work in that perfect long-tail keyword.

More to Think About with Extended Text Ads

  • Use Unique Paths to Your Advantage

Now that our ability to create custom display URLs has been replaced by a dynamically created versions of the final URL, Google has given us the ability to create custom “paths.” These paths can be whatever you want within a somewhat restricted character limit, but it does give us an additional opportunity to let the user know exactly what the product is and in which section of your site they can find it.

  • Test, Test, and Test

Honestly, this should be a given to any advertiser. Just because we get new ad formats to play with doesn’t mean that we should forget about the fundamentals. With new formats comes new methods for testing and new variables to test. Are you going to test Headline 1, Headline 2 or both? Are you going to swap out both paths or change what your description reads?

The ultimate question that advertisers are wondering is do we just forget about our old ads and always run the Extended Text Ads? Well, no, test and see. If your old best performing ads are stomping the extended versions with more conversions and higher click-through rates, then run them instead. You have until October 26 before AdWords’ monumental shift forces you to upgrade your ads, but when you do change them, remember the elements of your old-timer ads that performed well and try to replicate them in the Extended Text Ads.

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Utilizing One of the Greatest Ad Changes: Extended Text Ads

September 9, 2016 | 4 min read
By Tony Park

The global shift of mobile use for product research and purchasing has caused Google to make one of the biggest changes we’ve ever seen to its advertising platform. For years, digital advertisers have lived under the restricting hold of the 25-35-35 rule for ad characters. We’ve grown accustomed to shortening headlines and cramming value statements into an abrupt handful of words.

Finally, the silent prayer we recited to ourselves every time we drafted AdWords copy has been answered. Google has decided to give us an additional headline and extend the character limit for both by five characters. It has also condensed the description to one line and 80 characters long, turning the 25-35-35 rule into the 30-30-80 rule for Extended Text Ads. Never forget that digital advertising is always evolving. It’s up to you to recognize the changes and adapt so you can make the most of them.

Headlines Should Be Your No. 1 Focus

People read the headline first; sometimes it’s the only thing they read, and now we have two of them! Allow the headlines to be the meat and potatoes of your ads. Act as if the description line doesn’t exist and you want to get the most important information to consumers with just the headlines. Here are a few suggestions to keep in mind while constructing headlines for Extended Text Ads:

  • Use Headlines That Complement Each Other

Now that we’re dual-headlining, we want to include two statements that work together to satisfy the search query and tell the consumer why they should purchase your product or service. In my opinion, you should play with these combinations of headlines:

Product Specific Keyword – Call-to-Action

Extended text ads 1

Product Specific Keyword – Value Statement

Extended text ads 2

Question? – Call-to-Action

Extended text ads 3

For General Branded Campaigns:  Brand Name Keyword – Mission Statement

extended text ads 4

Basically, you don’t want two of the same elements for both headlines or elements that don’t fit well together. Play with these elements and find combinations that work best for your account.

  • Try to Fit in Those Long-Tail Keywords

We have the room to do it, so why not try? This should improve the quality score and help focus your ad around a particular search query.

  • Watch Out for Truncated Headlines

Look in AdWords Previewer to make sure your ad’s headlines aren’t going to be truncated when presented on certain devices. They usually state that if it looks okay in the previewer, then it should appear similarly on most devices.

Enhance Your Ads With the Longer Description Space

Descriptions should be the dessert of your ad. They are there to top it all off and further entice the viewer to make the decision to click and convert. It is your extra chance to add value to your product or service, create a connection with the viewer and let them know why your site is the perfect place to visit to get what they need.

  • Be More Concise With the Extra Character Space

AdWords’ Extended Text Ads now allow you a little more freedom with the extended, 80-character limit, and the change to having it on one line allows the advertiser to flow with a more succinct idea or thought. Take advantage of the opportunity by writing more creative copy and providing more specific examples of why you’re the best option.

  • It May Help to Treat Them Like Meta Descriptions

If you’re having a difficult time deciding how to approach your ads’ descriptions, or if you want your ads to be more informational, it may be easier to treat them like a page’s meta description. Write something descriptive and creative and try to work in that perfect long-tail keyword.

More to Think About with Extended Text Ads

  • Use Unique Paths to Your Advantage

Now that our ability to create custom display URLs has been replaced by a dynamically created versions of the final URL, Google has given us the ability to create custom “paths.” These paths can be whatever you want within a somewhat restricted character limit, but it does give us an additional opportunity to let the user know exactly what the product is and in which section of your site they can find it.

  • Test, Test, and Test

Honestly, this should be a given to any advertiser. Just because we get new ad formats to play with doesn’t mean that we should forget about the fundamentals. With new formats comes new methods for testing and new variables to test. Are you going to test Headline 1, Headline 2 or both? Are you going to swap out both paths or change what your description reads?

The ultimate question that advertisers are wondering is do we just forget about our old ads and always run the Extended Text Ads? Well, no, test and see. If your old best performing ads are stomping the extended versions with more conversions and higher click-through rates, then run them instead. You have until October 26 before AdWords’ monumental shift forces you to upgrade your ads, but when you do change them, remember the elements of your old-timer ads that performed well and try to replicate them in the Extended Text Ads.

Share This Post
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