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Google Expanded Text Ads Rollout

By Swell Media

Google rolled out a new exciting beta called Expanded Text Ads (ETA) that went live to the public this week. These ads will be the next generation of the standard AdWords Text Ads. As google has mentioned, this is the first change to their search text ad template in 15 years. They rolled this beta out in stages to test accounts and we were fortunate to be included in this for one of our clients over the past couple of months.

The biggest change we saw in the beta is that ETA’s allow advertisers more characters per ad. Nearly 50% increase in creative content, to be exact. While we were previously limited to 95 characters, we now have 140 at our disposal. This feature allows for a more prominent headline and extra room to highlight a company’s product and services.

Below you can see the before and after of what the ads will look like on desktop and mobile.

Source: Google

Ads will change from the standard 25-35-35 format to a 30-30-80 format. Advertisers will now be given two headlines with 30 characters and a combined description line of 80 characters vs one headline of 25 characters and two separate description lines of 35 characters. For anyone who has had to write ads in Google AdWords, this is an extremely attractive new feature.

Below is how the ad is created in the Adwords interface.

Personally, I find this is very exciting in the world of paid search and here's why: since launching this beta about two months ago we have seen improvements in CTR. The first month there was approximately 3.5% increase and the second month we are seeing approximately 15% increase.

One thing we were hoping for in the beta that we didn’t see was the ability to allow bulk uploads in Adwords editor. In beta, it was a manual process to add each ad in the user interface, but now that the program has exited the beta and gone live, Google has made an update to Adwords editor to support the new ETAs. Below is where you can now find the expanded text ads in editor.

Overall, we saw the following benefits from this update:

  • More control over the 2nd headline
  • Longer creative messaging
  • Clear landing page
  • Up to 15-20% CTR uplift over existing ads
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