What you need to know about Google’s Expanded Text ads

01 August 2016

What you need to know about Google’s Expanded Text ads

There’s big news in PPC advertising: Google has launched expanded text ads, which allow for longer copy and double headlines. At twice the size of current standard text ads, they will enable advertisers to increase their online presence and perform better on mobile search in particular.

For the time being, standard text ads will continue to be available to advertisers. However, from October 26th this year, marketers will no longer be able to create or upload them.

What are expanded text ads?

Expanded text ads were born from a thought exercise carried out by Google, where its AdWords team started to consider what AdWords ads would look like if they were created today, where mobile device displays are so key. The start of this imagining was the removal of right sidebar ads on desktop devices, and expanded text ads were developed from there.

Expanded text ads (also known as ETAs) are made up of two headlines (up to 30 characters each) and an 80-character description. Google reports an increase in click-through rate of 20% in its tests. The extra room in the description is reported to be for the benefit of mobile users, who want more information to be made available to them.

How to get the best out of expanded text ads

Always use the Ad Preview tool within AdWords to see what your ads are going to look like and make amendments if necessary. Check your ads out on different mobile devices as well as desktop displays.

The 30-character-per-headline limit can lead to truncated versions of the second headline being displayed on desktop computers, so be aware that it might be wise to not use every single character available to you. In fact, on Twitter, Google suggested using just 33 characters in total. The best approach is to experiment with different lengths and come to your own conclusions about best practice.

Take advantage of the increased visibility of expanded text ads by making sure that your landing page and offers are the best they can be. An increased CTR is little use if your website is not converting well enough. Also don’t forget to monitor your ads’ performance in analytics so that you can see how your specific audience is responding to the new ad style.

To find out more, visit Google’s page on the topic.