Google’s Expanded Text Ads to improve significantly

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Back in 2016, the tedious task presented to Paid Search practitioners worldwide of migrating from standard text ads to Google’s Expanded Text Ads (ETAs) was time-consuming, but very much a success. It provided 50% more space for copy and, thanks to the format being mobile-friendly, there was a 20% increase in CTRs reported across the board.

This year sees yet more changes being rolled out by the technology giants. In an attempt to increase advertisers’ shelf space and provide more information for searchers, there will be two optional fields introduced to Google Text Ads — Headline 3 and Description 2.

What is Headline 3?

Simply put, this allows advertisers to create a third headline for their text ads, providing a great option for any that must display a brand name or slogan in each ad. It will relieve the pressure of deciding what information is omitted and allows for more call-to-action experimenting.

What is Description 2?

Like the Headline 3 addition, this has been added to give the advertiser more room to describe their product. No longer will your awesome sentence be flagged up for being too long! You will be able to carry on your storytelling onto description line 2. Not only will this double your character space that’s available, but Google has even given each Text Ad description room for an extra 10 characters, giving each line 90 characters to use.

Must I use these?

Thankfully for resource managers worldwide, no, you’re not obligated to update your ads. The changes to ETAs aren’t mandatory, so you won’t need to schedule in time to migrate once again. The changes may actually come at a good time for advertisers who are beginning to experiment with Google’s Responsive Search Ads (RSAs), as you can look at ETAs as a stepping stone before you jump into RSAs. And don’t fret, you don’t need to run RSAs to benefit from text ad improvements.

Our thoughts

The changes appear to be a great addition for several reasons. For the user, it’s likely they’ll get a better experience due to advertisers being able to further connect to the audience thanks to the extra character count. PPC advertisers will still be required to use succinct writing techniques, but they’ll have a broader window of opportunity to provide the customer with important details to entice them in.

If you’re always testing — which, is important in our opinion — you can add all Google’s text ad variations to a group to test against each other. Simply change your ad creative settings to ‘optimise for clicks/conversions’ and see which comes out on top.

Perhaps most importantly, it’s very easy to implement and, of course, is optional. You can use both the Headline 3 and Description 2, just one, or neither — whichever suits your project. However, for maximum performance, we’d recommend that both are used.

While there’s no guarantee that it will work in favour of your advertising, the changes appear to be a great step forward by Google.

If you’re a business struggling with the streamlining of Google’s services and need help bidding on the most valuable keywords to better your search engine rankings, our PPC team is here to help. Contact us by filling out the form below.


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