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Ad Extensions Tutorial

Welcome to the tenth lesson ‘Ad Extensions’ of PPC Advertising Tutorial which is a part of Advanced Pay Per Click (PPC) Certification Course offered by SimpliLearn. In this lesson, we're going to look at ad extensions.

Let us first look at the objectives of this lesson.

Objectives

After completing this lesson, you will learn:

  • The importance of ad extensions

  • How to use various extensions including the location extension, call extension, social extension and others

  • Why every business should be using the sitelinks extension

  • How ad extensions affect CTR and ad rank

Ad Extension Overview

Ad extensions allow you to append additional information to your ad. A user can get more information about your company and your offers. They even have other things they can do such as call you directly from an ad.

So, to view your extensions, go to the Ad extensions tab within your AdWords account. In the sub-menu, you can navigate between the various extensions, and create new ones.

Let us now look into the first type of extension, Location Extension.

Location Extension

Location extension can help nearby consumers find or call at your nearest storefront and the user will see this on a desktop property. They can hover over the link in the ad, and they'll see all your locations nearby. If you only have one location then, of course, only one location will be displayed on the map.

On a mobile phone, a user can get directions directly from the ad. Depending on how the phone is configured, click on the get directions link, may load a map application within the phone or may charge the browser to get map directions.

The easiest way to take advantage of location extensions is to create a Google Places account. A Google Places account lets you claim your business information. And therefore, you can update it, ensure it's accurate online.

Even if you do not use location extension, if you have a physical, business it's always a good idea to create a Google Places account. So you can update your business's information and make sure it's accurate.

If you create a places account, then you can go to location extensions within AdWords, enter your places credentials and connect the two.

connecting-your-places-account-to-adwords

It is very simple to use location extension from a places account. Also, you can change the icon that is displayed with the ad. So you can use your favorite icon or choose another one of Google's pre-made icons.

There are times you might want allocation extension for a venue you don't own. This is common if you're holding an event or a concert or something and you wish to advertise locally, but you don't own the place's account.

In cases like that, you can still use a location extension with manually entered information. Once these are created on a Google Maps property, a user can search for your business, see all your locations and then easily get directions to your business.

manually-entered-information-to-adwords

You can also control the reach of your location extension. If you're a local company and consumers don't drive 50 miles to find you, but maybe you're advertising in a larger radius.

You can go into your campaign settings Location settings, advanced location settings and then from there, change how far away someone has to be before they see a location extension.

If your advertising to a very small area, you may want to have your location extension only show two miles around your business even though you're advertising a 20 or 30-mile radius.

So location extensions are great ones to use if you're trying to showcase a physical location and get consumers to travel to you.

Call Extension

Let us understand how we can make use of Phone numbers, Mobile Display, Conversion Tracking, and Ad Scheduling while creating the call extension.

Phone numbers

There are other times when your primary goal is to get a call. If you're focused on calls, the call extension is a really good one to use. So this extension will show a phone number or a call button in the ad, depending on if the user is on a mobile device or a desktop device.

call-extensions-option-phone-numbers

For the user's on a mobile device, they can click the call button, and it will load the dialer on their phone, so they can quickly hit the call button and call your company.

There are several options you have when creating the call extension, so first, off you can decide what phone number is used. So you can use a Google forwarding number. And if you use this option, you'll get reporting call metrics directly in your account.

There are other times you might not want to do that; you might be using a third-party call tracking solution, you've built your call tracking solution and you just want to use your phone number.

So depending if you want call metrics directly inside your account, use option A, the Google 40 number. If you don't want these metrics in your account, or you might be using a third-party call tracking, which you can even do with the Google 40 number, then you can use your phone number.

Mobile Display

On mobile devices, there are specific options for how the call extension affects the ad. You can make it so that a user can see the ad.

Call extensions options with the mobile display are shown in the below image.

call-extensions-option-mobile-display

They can click on the ad, and go to your website. They can click on the call button and load the phone dialer. You can make it so on a mobile display only the phone number is clickable. So the ad just loads the dialer of the phone, and they can't go directly to your site. That only affects mobile. It does not affect desktops.

Conversion Tracking

call-extensions-option-conversion-tracking

You can even use conversion tracking with calls. If you want to see conversions for calls that last at least 90 seconds, you can click the count calls as phone call conversions button, and then they'll be used as conversions inside your account.

If you have a threshold of time that you want a call to occur before it's a conversion, then enter in information. If you're a hotel and you just want to count calls as conversions if they're bookings and a booking usually takes at least 120 seconds, you can put 120. So look at what a right call is for your business.

In some cases, it's 10 or 20 seconds. In other examples, it's longer, and use that metric as for how long a call has to last before it's counted as a goal.

Ad Scheduling

You can also do ad scheduling for call extensions.

call-extensions-option-ad%20scheduling

For instance, you might be a business that only answers the phone from eight to five. Outside of eight to five, you use an answering service, or you use some other service, but you're not quite as focused on calls during those times.

You can use ad scheduling so that your extension only runs from eight to five where you can make it, so it runs eight to five Monday to Friday or runs noon to five on the weekends. If there are times you're focused on calls and times you're not concentrated on calls, you can switch when the extension exists.

ad-scheduling-for-call-extensions

Campaign or Ad Group Level

Call extensions can be at the campaign or ad group level. So you might have a campaign level extension that's for your whole business, but then you have some particular ad groups. Maybe one's a support line, one's some special offer you're currently running, and you want to track them differently.

In a case like that, you can create a campaign level extension that's used in every ad group and then for various specific ad groups you can decide not to use the extension or use a different number where the user calls when they see that offer.

If you want to sort of mix and match where users go, you can change where the call extension occurs from a campaign or ad group level.

Call Extensions on Desktop Results

When you use a call extension on desktops, the numbers displayed next to the headline in within the body of the copy. It's not a click to call, cause most desktops don't have click to call functionality. So on mobile phones, it's a click to call feature.

call-extensions-on-desktop-resultsOn desktop results, a number is shown next to the ad; a user dials it. And if you're using the call tracking from Google, then you can see that information of who are even calling you from desktop results.

Social Extension

Google Plus is a fastly growing network. So if you want to get more Google Plus followers, the social extension's a perfect one to use. With the social extension right within the ad, someone can recommend the page, and it will show how many people have plus one or are followed your page.

the-google-plus-page-and-followers

Look at all the plus ones, no matter if they came from your page directly, if they came from the ad if it was directly in Google Plus. So for the common extension, it's an aggregate of everyone who has plus one your page.

For pricing, you'll be charged a standard click price if someone clicks on the ad to visit your sites, but you will not be charged if someone clicks the recommend page button and doesn't visit your website within an ad.

To take advantage of the social extension, you'll need first a Google+ page.

  • Create your Google+ page

  • Go back to AdWords and put in the URL of your Google+ page

What is important is the URL formatting is when you go to Google Plus, if you've got a vanity domain, you generally see URLs like plus.google.com/+ and then your page name /posts. If you don't have a vanity domain, then you'll see this string of numbers.

the-url-formatting-in-google-plus

The trick to getting these formatted correctly is to pull off the very last dash and post and leave just a number or the vanity domain as the end of the URL string.

So once you do that, then it'll go in for review, Google will look at it. In most cases, it'll be approved, assuming you're not doing something odd on your Google+ page, and then you can use the social extension within your ads.

In the next section, we will look at another great extension and one that every company should be using, sitelinks.

Sitelinks

With sitelinks, additional links are put directly below your or your ad takes up the more real estate. Sitelinks:

  • Allows users to quickly navigate deeper into your site.

  • It allows you to show various offers you might be running.

sitelinks-examples-with-additional-links

So with sitelinks, you probably have another four or six pages on your site related to any ad or any ad group or even campaign that you're advertising. To create the site links, you'll create each link individually. You'll have:

  • The text of the link: This is what shows up in the ad.

  • The URL: This is where the user goes.

Creating the sitelinks Extension

All sitelinks must go to different pages of your site. You can't have two sitelinks that go to the same page. You can choose your device preference. So if you don't choose a preference, it's desktop preferred and can be used on mobile.

If you want to create mobile-specific sitelinks, you can click the device preference mobile and then from mobile devices; your mobile sitelinks will be used instead of your desktop ones. If you don't set a preference, then this same site link can be used for any device. You can also schedule your sitelinks, as well.

creating-sitelink-extensions

Managing Sitelinks

Suppose you have specific promotions you're running, maybe you're in flowers, and you've got Valentine's Day and Mother's Day and various parts of the year where you have exceptional offers, and you want your sitelinks focused on that offer.

Then, you can set up sitelinks with custom flowers and gifts and chocolates for Valentine's Day, the other set that's custom flowers and gifts for Mother's Day and then schedule when the ads will use that particular sitelink.

So you'll go through and create several of these, and then you'll have a big list of all the site links you've added.

Creating a sitelink for an individual campaign or ad group is a matter of looking at all the individual sitelinks. You can then select two, three or four usually four or six sitelinks and just click over and save it by the campaign.

managing-the-sitelinks-example

With enhanced campaigns, it's much easier to manage sitelinks, because you can go through and create 10, 20, 30 different links and then for each campaign or ad group, just easily click over and say these three links go with this ad group and these six links go with this campaign.

As you look at your campaign and ad group segmentation and the best links to use with each, it's simple to create sitelinks that are very appropriate to the ads based upon what you want to use campaign or ad group ones. So this is another big advantage of enhancing campaigns.

-image -creating-sitelinks-based-upon-campaign-or-ad-group-ones

Before enhancing campaigns, sitelinks were always campaign level and with enhanced, you can make them campaign or add a group. So you might have the campaign level, basic offers that run a site type of offers.

They go with every possible ad group, but then you'll have some ad groups, in this example, specific wedding supplies and so in that case, we just want our wedding supply sitelinks for that ad group.

We might have a different ad group that's about anniversary supplies for parties; then we'd have, for the anniversary ad group, anniversary napkins and anniversary cups and not the wedding ones.

So if you have your ad group segmented well by-product, which is a very important step, well-segmented ad groups, then you can also create sitelinks by ad group or by a campaign that then will reflect benefits to users and other offers that go with that particular ad.

Another advantage of enhanced campaigns is you could see some good performance stats for sitelinks.

Viewing Sitelinks metrics

If you go to the ad extensions and click the Segment button in the segment by click Type, then you can see the sitelink name if the user clicked on the headline or the sitelink and the conversion data. There's a lot of information that you can get about sitelinks to optimize them.

viewing-the-sitelinks-metrics

Next, we are going to look at the App Extension.

App Extension

The app extension has very similar options to sitelinks. But if you are focused on getting users to install or download an app, you can use the app extension, which will let people get information about your phone app to quickly download it or learn more.

app-extension-with-same-options-as-sitelinksYour overall options are pretty much the same as sitelinks, ad group level or campaign level and various overwrite settings.

Review Extension

The review extension allows you to put information either a direct quote or paraphrase data from a third party source directly into your ad. This helps to:

  • Increase the social proof and third-party reviews right in your ad

  • Communicates to your searcher why you're a great business to click on

  • Do business with once they get to your website.

It's possible for someone to click on only the source link of where that review comes from. If they click on the source link, they will go to the review page where that information comes from and not your website.

Anywhere else they click on the ad should go to your website or initiate a call depending on the extension type and the ad format.

showcasing-the-third-party-reviews-in-review-extension

Creating a Review Extension

Creating a review extension's very easy where:

  • You pick if it's paraphrased or an exact quote.

  • You put in your text and your source code and then, of course, the URL for that particular source.

-image-creating-a-review-extension

These sometimes take a little while to get reviewed. They don't go live automatically as someone does check on that review before this goes live and Google's showing this quote in your ads for other searchers to see.

Ad Rank & Extensions

As extensions have become more and more prevalent, they have made a dramatic effect on the ad click-through rates. Given below is data from Kelsey that was shown by Bing and Google's seen some similar items.

data-from-kelsey-shown-by-bing-and-google

  • Adding a Sitelink extension has caused, on average, a 29% increase, include the rate with the US. In the UK, it's 23%.

  • Adding location extensions with the driving directions has increased CTR 10 to 30%.

People who click on a call extension and call a business are much more likely to purchase than general ad clickers. Because extensions have made such an impact on click-through rate, Google's made a change to how they calculate ad rank.

Ad Extensions affect Ad Ranks

Now, we're going to cover ad rank in a lot of detail in the quality score section, but at a conceptual level, ad rank is essentially where your ad ranks in search results. The higher your ad rank, the lower your average position, and the higher you are on a page.

For a long time, all that was considered an Ad Rank was your Bid and your Quality Score. Well because Extensions have made such an impact on Click Thru Rates.

Extension, Click Thru Rates and projected Click Thru Rates are also taken into account when determining where your ad should fall on a search result page. It’s essential to use Ad Extensions, especially with these changes to Ad Rank.

Summary

To recap all of our information on ad extensions:

  • Extensions at a conceptual level, allow you to add additional information to your ads.

  • If you've got a local business or physical addresses, location extensions are great to use.

  • When you're focused on generating calls, especially from mobile devices, use the call extension.

  • Social extensions allow you to connect with your consumers on a social level.

  • Sitelinks add more detail to your ad and give users multiple choices of where to go to your websites.

  • Review extensions show 3rd party information about your services and your products.

  • The ad takes extension data into account, in determining where to put your ad on a search result page.

  • You should add at least one extension; everybody can use sitelinks and two to three if possible for each of your campaigns.

  • If you're a local business, you can use a location extension, the call extension, the sitelink, the social interview all at once.

  • If you're a national e-commerce business, you can use the sitelink and review and potentially social if that's important to you, and call extensions.

  • Everyone can use at least one extension, and potentially two to three or maybe even four to five.

  • Make sure that each campaign, extensions at the campaign level, each of your campaigns is using at least sitelinks and hopefully one or two additional extensions to show more data to the consumers to convince them why you are a business they should deal with and also to help increase your ad ranks

Conclusion

This brings us to the end of this lesson. In the next lesson, we're going to look at where you should send your page search traffic

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