About a year ago, Google introduced a new AdWords advertising feature called Ad Extensions, which provides space for pay-per-click advertisers to include up to four links to their websites, underneath their sponsored listing.
Ad Extensions makes it uber easy for advertisers to update existing ads on a continual basis, refresh and promote various or seasonal offerings. They can be changed as often as the advertiser would like, making it possible to keep each ad up to date for current sales and marketing efforts.
This feature also expands the sizing of sponsored links. Advertisers need to bid appropriately to ensure that their sitelinks appear in the first or second position on the search engine results (a Top-2 position is required for the ad extensions to appear). However, there is no additional cost to running them. It’s just the cost-per-click, capped by the max bid amount.
There are five main extensions offered by Google:
- Location Extensions: Link your Google Places page to your ad campaign.
- Product Extensions: Link your product pages to your ad campaign, to display product pictures and prices within the Google search results.
- Sitelink Extensions: Direct users to more specific, relevant pages within your website.
- Call Extensions: Add a phone number to your campaign, and mobile users can click directly on it to call you.
- Social Extensions: Link your Google+ page to your ad campaign.
The results are proven as well, since ad extensions provide fantastic click-thru rates. While a standard text ad can expect an average click-thru rate of 1-2%, early results of ad extensions are showing 30% increases in click-thru rates for marketers, year over year. Sellers are noticing a 15-30% increase in brand PPC sales year over year.
At Dana, we are also seeing strong results from the ad extensions. Amongst our active campaigns, call extensions receive a click-thru rate ranging from 2.85 to 18.5%. Sitelink extensions are producing clicks at a rate of 8.5 to 22.7%, and location extensions are garnering a click-thru rate ranging from 5.4% to 18.1%.
Given the proven effectiveness of Ad Extensions, as well as its set-up simplicity and the expansion of on-page space on the search results page, we strongly suggest that every advertiser use some form of Ad Extensions in any ongoing Google paid search campaign.