Enhance Your Ads with the Right Extensions: Google Best Practices

Understand the benefits of ad extensions in AdWords


Ad extensions give your ads more prominence and get you more clicks and valuable user interactions, like calls. This guide helps you understand ad extensions.

Introduction

Ad extensions provide additional information and let people take action directly from the search results. During intent-rich micro-moments, extensions give your ads more prominence and get you more clicks and valuable user interactions, like calls. Ad extensions make your ads more appealing, often at a lower cost per additional click than the cost of moving up a position. In this guide, we’ll cover the aspects of AdWords ad extensions that you should know about when managing your account.

 

Enable all ad extensions that make sense for your business.

Advertisers spend lots of time optimising their ad text (which is great), but implementing extensions is often an immediate and highly impactful way to improve CTR. An ad extension adds value to potential customers by being present and providing additional relevant information.

Tip:

Every type of ad extension that we offer is intended to benefit our users, which translates to a higher CTR for you. On average we have found that there is a 10-15% CTR uplift* from implementing a new ad extension.

*This will vary by client, business type and extension type, among other factors, and Google cannot guarantee this or any uplift.

We’ve also found that more information is a good thing, which means that ads with multiple extensions often perform better than ads with only one extension. Identify which extensions work for your business and implement them. The best combination of these extensions is automatically determined on an auction-by-auction basis. That extra prominence can also be a great thing for you and your brand, and that extra space can go a long way toward standing out on the results page.

Extensions and Ad Rank
Additionally, ad extensions are a component of Ad Rank along with your bids, the quality of your ads and landing page, the Ad Rank thresholds and the context of the person’s search. You can often get the same number of clicks for less money when you use ad extensions. They’re intended to be a good thing for your performance.

Ad Rank also determines which extensions are eligible to show with your ads and how much you pay per click. During each auction, you need to pay the minimum amount necessary to hold your position and to keep the extensions that you have in that position. For example, if your Ad Rank places you in the top position with location extensions and sitelinks, you’ll pay the minimum amount necessary to keep that position with those extensions.

Extensions will only be shown when your Ad Rank is high enough. There are times when you may need to increase your ad quality or bid in order for your extensions to show.

Control CPCs with your bids, not by removing ad extensions.

Ads that appear in higher positions are more prominent and more valuable to advertisers. As a result, higher positions usually have a higher actual CPC. Extensions similarly make ads more prominent and valuable, so they often correspond with a higher actual CPC. Of course, you’ll never pay more than your max CPC (unless you use automated bidding).

Using ad extensions is the more cost effective way to get more clicks, when compared to raising your bid in order to increase position. If you have an eye towards managing your costs, consider lowering your Max CPC bids rather than removing ad extensions.

The Ad Rank for your ads with extensions is adjusted for the expected impact of ad extensions and other ad formats by taking into account the relevance, click-through rates and prominence of your extensions. The more prominence your ad receives, the more impact ad extensions will have on your Ad Rank. This means that a moderate amount of prominence may have little or no impact on your actual CPC, but a high amount of prominence may have a larger impact on your CPC.

It’s also worth noting that we’ve designed the auction so that you won’t be able to get more prominence (and more incremental clicks) from extensions than you would from moving up to a higher position. So, if you're in position two and would like more clicks or extensions, you may need to raise your bid or quality (or both) to move up to position one.

Make your ad extensions as relevant and high quality as possible.

Ad extensions are auto-optimised to show the best possible combination on each and every auction.

We try to show the highest performing and most useful combination of formats from among those eligible in the available space. Since there are so many moving pieces, there’s no way to prioritise which extensions you want to show. Enable whatever makes sense for your customers and let the AdWords system decide among those options. The specific extensions that are displayed are a function of previous performance, user context and available space on the page.

In some cases, there isn’t a lot for you to do to optimise your ad extensions. But that doesn’t mean that those extensions are being neglected. The AdWords system does a host of things to automatically optimise your extensions behind the scenes.

Just one example of this is that we automatically test and optimise serving of sitelinks to find the right combination based on past performance.

 

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