Ad Extensions are by far one of the easiest and most impactful ways to boost your paid search performance. Not only do they require minimal set up time, but they are displayed at no additional cost. A serious win-win situation for all PPC managers out there! Most of us are familiar with the basic extensions, such as Sitelinks and Call Extensions, but Google has really upped the ante in the last few months. If you haven’t been scouring the Adwords Blog for their updates, here’s a quick summary of the new extensions that are worth exploring:
Offer Extensions (Live)
- What are they? Offer Extensions are one of Google’s newest ad extension innovations. They give advertisers the opportunity to present relevant offers within their ad text to drive searchers to click on their ads. When users click the “view offer” link, they are pushed to a Google hosted landing page that provides an option to print out the offer or “save it for later.” These extensions give clients an extra incentive to visit stores and complete a transaction.
- Who should use them? Advertisers who are aiming to bring more foot traffic into their local businesses. They are especially beneficial for places that provide products that don’t work well online. Ideally, once a user has visited the physical store, they will be more likely to return again in the future.
Image Extensions (Open Beta)
- What are they? Gone are the days of the text-only ads on the Search Network. Google unveiled Image Extensions earlier this month and the PPC community was elated. This new feature allows advertisers to include a reel of images along with their typical text ad. No doubt, the visual component will help your ads dominate the SERP and drive higher click-through-rates.
- Who should use them? This is the perfect opportunity for non-ecommerce advertisers who do not have a product feed (and therefore PLAs) to grab their searchers’ attention. Remember, a picture is worth a thousand words; you can certainly convey more through an image than through text. I foresee this to be particularly valuable for industries with “sexy” products—think luxury vacations, fancy cars, etc. That said, you should steer clear of this program if you are selling services that are not well represented by images. The Beta is available globally, but only to English language accounts.
Review Extensions (Open Beta)
- What are they? These brand, spankin’ new extensions allow advertisers to include a snippet of a third-party review beneath their ad text. Sound familiar? You may be confusing this new feature with Seller Ratings, which are automatically applied for advertisers opted into Google Shopping. The Review Extensions beta was launched on 6/27, so we still have a lot to learn about it. For the time being, we know that advertisers will have the opportunity to select the review they want to use, provided that it fits within the 67 character limit and includes a link to the publication’s website. Google has also pledged to diligently monitor all reviews to ensure they are coming from valid, reputable sources.
- Who should use them? This is a great opportunity for small, local businesses to boost their reputations and share positive reviews with searchers. It will also be beneficial to businesses who do not have access to Seller Ratings. Remember, this is an English-only beta. If you are not advertising to an English speaking market, you’ll have to keep an eye out to see if Google expands it.
*The majority of these extensions are still in Beta, but don’t let that discourage you from participating. If you meet the Beta criteria, reach out to your Google rep to see if they can grant you access. If you’re persistent, they are usually willing to pull a few strings to get you on board!
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