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Top 5 Things to Know about Google’s New Expanded Text Ads

Earlier this week, Google officially rolled out expanded text ads. It’s the biggest change made to AdWords since the marketing service – which has grown to become the largest online-to-offline ad measurement solution worldwide – was launched 15 years ago. In a nutshell, the new design means AdWords campaigns will now be bigger and provide more room to express yourself, which is great for businesses who want to enhance their chances of getting noticed online. While the new design certainly has people excited for the opportunity to maximise their digital exposure, it also has them asking a lot of questions: just how much bigger are the ads? What will they look like? When will they roll out?

Here’s all you need to know about the new design of Google’s text ads and how you can utilise the freshly revamped marketing tool to really optimise your business’s online presence.

1. The ads are twice as big as original AdWords text ads. AdWords will now provide a total of 140 characters’ worth of copy space for you to utilise in creating punchy content about your business. This means two headlines, each boasting up to 30 characters, and a description of up to 80 characters. With all those precious extra characters now available at your disposal, you want to really make them count, so make sure you are crafting eye-catching ads that balance valuable information with emotional appeal.

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Image: Google Inside AdWords

2. More text means more visibility, and more visibility = higher click-through rates. Early reports have indicated that expanded text ads are encouraging a boost in CTRs by as much as 20%, which is great news for businesses – particularly those that are just starting out and are trying to ramp up their customer base.

3. AdWords are now designed for a mobile-first world. One of the core reasons Google decided to refurbish its original AdWords design was to align with the public’s increased use of mobile devices. With more than half of the trillions of Google searches that take place each year occurring on smartphones and tablets, it only made sense to optimise the original design for this particular canvas.

(Click to see the full-size image.)

4. Advertisers will no longer be able to create or upload standard text ads as of October 26. Google has announced that while existing ads will continue to run alongside expanded text ads indefinitely at this stage, no new standard text ads will be generated as of October 26, 2016.

5. Your AdWords’ Quality Score is now more important than ever. With expanded text ads taking up more room on Google pages, your ranking becomes even more vital. Ads that appear too far down the page will risk going unnoticed by an audience – particularly if they’re flicking through on their smartphone. Start preparing for the acquisition of that prime SERP real estate by optimising the quality and relevance of your current keywords and shaping an expanded text ad campaign that is SEO-rich and irresistibly compelling.

By Trish O'Loughlin

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