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About text ads on mobile devices

Mobile text ads look like standard text ads that you'd see on a desktop computer. The main difference is that we can show more ads per page when someone's searching on a desktop computer, and fewer ads per page when someone's searching on a mobile device. Keep in mind, text ads can appear differently on the Display Network.

Did you know...

AdWords defines a "mobile device" as a tablet or smartphone. "Desktop" includes both laptops and other full-sized computers.

Mobile-optimized text ads

Let’s say your ad group contains both a standard text ad and a mobile-optimized text ad. On mobile devices, your mobile-optimized text ad will be given preference over standard text ads. On computers and laptops, your standard text ad will be given preference over mobile-optimized text ads.

If your ad group contains only mobile-optimized text ads (which we don’t recommend), those ads may appear on desktop or laptop computers as well as tablets.

A mobile-optimized ad will only be given preference over other ads of the same type. Text ads, Dynamic Search Ads, Shopping ads, and ads that can run only on the Display Network are considered different ad types.


In a campaign promoting your hat store on both the Search and Display Networks, you have an ad group with the following types of ads:

  • Standard text ad
  • Mobile-optimized text ad
  • Standard image ad

If Google determines that an image ad should be shown to someone browsing a Display Network site on a mobile phone, then your standard image ad will be shown. Your mobile-optimized text ad won't be shown because text ads and image ads are different types of ads.

Discover five mobile advertising strategies to build your mobile presence with AdWords.

Dynamically optimizing your ads for performance

For mobile text ads, AdWords may sometimes replace your second line of description text with the most relevant ad extensions that you've enabled — like sitelink extensions, location extensions, or callout extensions. This helps us provide the most relevant information possible to your potential customers, and can increase your ads' clickthrough rates.

The following examples show how AdWords can dynamically fine-tune your ads to deliver more relevant and high-performing information. Keep in mind that the examples below will not always occur, and that this feature will not be available for accounts advertising pharmaceutical products or services.


Ad auction scenario What shows in the ad How your ad might look
A specific ad extension that you have enabled will perform better than your ad's description line 2 text. Your top performing ad extension for this audience will appear in place of your description line 2 text.
Description Line 1
Sitelink 1 - Sitelink 2
Your ad's description line 2 text will perform better than an ad extension. Your description line 2 will appear in your ad.
Description line 1
Description line 2
Neither the description line 2 text nor an ad extension would perform best in the ad auction. The ad will be collapsed to make more space for additional relevant ads in the auction.
Description line 1

You don't have to do anything to take advantage of this feature, but there are a few ways to further optimize your mobile ad text:

  • Start by creating ad extensions, if you haven't already. If they perform better than your description text, your ad extensions will appear when your ads show on mobile devices.
  • Keep your description lines short and sweet. It's still smart to create a second line of description text — if your text performs better than your ad extensions, or if your ads appear on desktops or tablets, AdWords will show it instead. Keep these lines under 35 characters to make them easy to read on smaller screens.
  • Consider mobile-preferred ads. To get your message across in less space, try writing description text that is short, direct, and highly relevant to people on the go. Check the "Mobile" box when creating your new mobile-optimized ad to let AdWords know it should show on mobile devices.


Did you know...

Ad extensions are factored into how Ad Rank is calculated, so showing more relevant, better performing extensions, can help improve your ad position. If two competing ads have the same bid and quality, then the ad with the more relevant extensions will most likely appear in a higher position than the other.


If you'd prefer to only show your description text, and disallow the potential substitution of higher-performing ad extensions for your description line 2, you can opt out of mobile text ad optimization by filling out this form.

Note: Opting out may negatively impact your ads' clickthrough rates because higher performing ad extensions will not replace description line 2.

Your text ads will automatically run on mobile devices unless you’ve set a -100% bid adjustment for mobile devices in your campaigns settings under “Devices”.

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