It’s no secret that the online advertising landscape is incredibly competitive, with Statista predicting that global digital advertising spending will amount to roughly US$646 billion by 2024.
To distinguish themselves from the exponentially busier crowd, digital marketers will often feel compelled to get their creative juices flowing – coming up with the most snappy and captivating ad copy to capture the attention of prospective customers.
This effort often comes at a cost; whereby they’ll neglect a powerful tool that can bring a more immediate impact to click-through rates – ad extensions!
In our latest editorial, we’ll discuss our must-have ad extensions in 2022.
What are Google ad extensions?
Google ad extensions do exactly what they say on the tin; they expand your ads.
Extensions add more real estate to your character-constricted ad campaigns, attaching additional information below or to the side of the main body of your text ads – only doing so when Google Ads predicts they’ll improve your ads performance.
They add value to potential customers in intent-rich micro-moments by letting them take action directly from search results.
What are the types of Google ad extensions?
Google recognises that variety is the spice of life; offering a multitude of ad extensions to suit the needs of all businesses.
Extensions can be broken down into two types; automated and manual.
Automated extensions require no set-up on your part; they’re added automatically by Google when their algorithm predicts that they’ll improve your ads performance.
Eleven manual ad extensions are currently available & require a little more effort from you to implement.
Take a look at the list below and determine which combination of manual extensions best suits your business’ goals:
- Sitelinks – clickable links that take people to designated pages on your website.
- Structured Snippets – show beneath your ad text to highlight specific aspects of your products or services, formatted with a header (such as Service Catalog) followed by your offering.
- Callouts – used to provide detailed information about the unique offers of your business, such as ‘Same Day Shipping’ or ‘24-Hour Customer Service’.
- Image – allow you to upload vibrant and relevant images to sit alongside your search ads, visualising exactly what it is you offer.
- Call – provide a click-to-call button (on mobile) that allows potential customers to call you directly from the search ad.
- Location – help people find your physical location by showing search ads with your address, a map to your location and/or the distance to your business.
- Affiliate Location – provided you sell through retail chains, they help people find nearby stores that sell your products.
- Lead Form – let people submit their contact information in a form that pops up directly from your search ad.
- Price – show as a set of up to 8 cards that potential customers can view to see your available products and their respective prices.
- App – allows you to link your mobile or tablet app from your search ad.
- Promotion – highlight your sales and promotions for individuals looking for the best deals you have to offer.
Cost of Google ad extensions?
Here comes the best part; ad extensions are completely free!
Clicks on your ads, including extensions, will be charged as usual while clicks on seller ratings won’t be charged.
If your campaigns are confronted with spiralling costs, first consider lowering your Max CPCs before removing your ad extensions, as the latter is considered by many to be the more cost-effective way to get clicks.
Why should you implement Google ad extensions?
More information in your ads means greater visibility on the fabled search results page.
According to Google, depending on both the type of business and extension, a new ad extension can bring a 10-15% uplift in click-through rates.
The importance of ad extensions grew immensely in 2020, as Google changed how ad rank is calculated – adding ‘Format Impact’ (a type of bonus you get for using extensions) as a part of its calculation.
In short, ad extensions can boost your ads’ quality score, leading to an improved ad rank, cheaper clicks and more relevant leads. What’s not to like?
How do you add Google Ad Extensions?
From your Google Ads dashboard, click the ‘Ads & Extensions’ tab on the left navigation bar. Select ‘Extensions’, click the blue plus button and select the extensions from the drop-down list that most suit your business’ goals.
Extensions can be added at the various levels of your account: account, campaign and ad group-wide.
Once implemented, you can also monitor how your different extensions are performing, with an entire page dedicated to detailing how many impressions, clicks and conversions (amongst other statistics) your extensions have received.
Our 3 must-have Google ad extensions in 2022
Batman & Robin, Laurel & Hardy, Strawberries & Cream – there are some things in life that you just couldn’t picture without the other.
Similarly, in 2022, we believe your ad campaigns simply can’t go without the following… sitelinks, call and image extensions! Let’s go over why.
Sitelinks remain king in the world of ad extensions.
Along with callouts and structured snippets, these are considered Universal extensions – ones that Google recommends every advertiser uses.
As shown below, they add additional links below the main ad text, which direct users to the pages of your site that you most want them to visit.
They’re clickable, add greater real estate to your ad, and are shown to bring about an 8% uplift in click-through rates.
Call extensions do exactly as the name suggests; providing a click-to-call button (on mobile) that allows prospective customers to call you directly.
Search ads with phone numbers in the copy of their headlines or descriptions are almost always rejected by Google. Consequently, call extensions have become the easiest way of adding your business phone number to your ads; featuring to the side of your website’s URL in the main ad text.
By adding this form of extension, you can expect to see an increase in click-through rates of between 6 and 8 percent.
Last but not least, image extensions bring your search ads to life like no other.
They allow you to upload vibrant and relevant images to sit alongside your existing text ads, with the purpose of visualising exactly what it is that you’re advertising.
A relatively recent addition, having been opened up to all advertisers since May 2021, it’s considered best practice to upload 20 diverse images that best epitomise your product or service.
Let’s wrap this up
As you can probably tell by now, we’re pretty big fans of ad extensions.
They’re completely free, can do nothing but improve the performance of your ad campaigns, and crucially, convey useful information to make it easier for prospective customers to engage with your business.
With such an array to choose from, we believe that this year’s three go-to ad extensions are sitelinks, call and image extensions – make sure your campaigns don’t go without them.