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Expanded Text Ad Performance in Focus

Posted on 8.21.2016

While it's tempting to try each and every feature provided by Google AdWords, a more cautious approach is usually much smarter. Essentially, why not do some testing before investing ad dollars into an offering that will do little more than drain budget?

Rise Interactive, for example, recently tested Google's new Expanded Text Ads (ETAs) and found they provide a significant opportunity for those looking to improve the customer experience through paid search ads.

The ETAs differ from traditional text ads (which are being retired in a few months) dramatically. ETAs have two 30-character headlines (as opposed to one 25-character headline in traditional text ads), and have one consolidated 80-character description line (as opposed to the two 35-character description lines of traditional text ads). What these modifications ultimately equate to is more digital real estate within ads for marketers to make their appeal to consumers.

So, do ETAs live up to the hype? Keep reading...


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Since launching the new format, Google has reported these ads have increased click through rates (CTR) by up to 20 percent. A good CTR could be anywhere from 5-50 percent, so the reported increase could prove incredibly significant. Does the performance hold true for others using ETAs? In the case of Rise Interactive, it most certainly does.

Rise implemented the ads for a select group of its client while the program was still in beta and evaluated their performance through an ad copy test to see if they could deliver on the CTR boost.

Data collected from its ad copy test proved that Expanded Text Ads outperformed traditional ads with statistical significance. ETAs saw increases in CTR ranging from 6 percent to nearly 180 percent, with an average lift being about 130 percent. One of its ETAs had nearly a 50 percent CTR, which equated to the ad receiving a click for nearly every other impression.

Additionally, Expanded Text Ads saw gains across several other key metrics. In certain instances, conversion rate and return on ad spend increased. This result could be attributed to the more detailed and complete messaging that the extra character count allows for, contributing to an overall better search and customer experience. Additionally, there were higher average page positions for ETAs, due to improved Expected CTR.

Have you used Expanded Text Ads from Google? Share your experience with other digital advertisers by submitting a comment below!

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