Google began experimenting with expanded ad text in Q2 of this year, and many of our clients were part of the beta program.
Expanded ad text is exactly as it sounds. It offers advertisers larger character limits on the ads. Instead of a 25-character headline and two 35-character description lines, advertisers now get two 30-character headlines and an 80-character description. In case you weren’t keeping track, that’s a total of 45 more characters!
Expanded ad text in PPC campaigns is now available globally on AdWords and Bing Ads, and we’ve had a couple of months worth of data to see what kind of impact these new ads are having on top-level metrics.
Looking across our client portfolio, most of the positive impact can be seen in click-through rates (CTR). The average increase in CTR over the traditional ad text is about 30%! We’ve also seen increases in conversion rates of about 50%, although that could be due to some other factors. We’ve also seen some decreases in cost per click (CPC), which again can be due to other factors. However, with an increased character limit, it’s easier to include the keyword you’re targeting in the ad copy, which helps lower CPC.
But CTR would be the main metric to look at when evaluating the overall performance of the expanded ad text as it’s the metric mostly likely to be impacted by the expanded ad text without being affected by other factors.
Bottom line: you need to implement expanded ad text NOW! The data clearly shows it’s definitely worth your time. Also, Google will only allow you to edit and add expanded ad text when they discontinue traditional ad text. Once you do implement expanded ad text, you can continue to run traditional ad text and monitor the performance; you can do so by filtering ad types as “Expanded Ad Text” and “Text Ads” are classified as different ad types.
One final note: It’ll be interesting to see the data when all the ads running are expanded ad text. Currently, expanded ad text can run alongside traditional ad text, and the juxtaposition could be helping the expanded ad text as it stands out more. Stay tuned for a follow up!
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