From the May 2014 issue of our newsletter, Let’s Grow. For a Free subscription, CLICK HERE.

The Easiest Way to Improve Google AdWords Results

Want a sure-fire way to raise your click-through rate on Google AdWords? If you're not already using Ad Extensions, start!

What are they, you ask?

Ad Extensions offer prospects additional ways to interact with your company beyond clicking on the headline of your ad. They're easy to set up, and they don't cost any extra. There are several different types of Ad Extensions, the most important being these:

Sitelink Extensions. Sitelinks are links to additional pages of your website that help prospects find the information they're looking for faster. We've found that ads showing sitelinks tend to have click-through rates that are an impressive three to five times greater than those without. If a prospect clicks on multiple sitelinks within a single user session, you're only charged once.

A few tips for best results:

     • Use as many sitelinks as you can.
     • Keep sitelink text short and clear.
     • Use a different landing page for each sitelink.

Call Extensions. With call extensions, phone numbers are added below a text ad to encourage phone calls. On mobile devices, a clickable call button is shown. Call extensions can be set up to display only during hours when your business can take calls. Google can provide special forwarding numbers at no extra charge, so calls are tracked to your campaigns. Call extensions typically increase click-through rates by 6% to 8%.

Location Extensions. For companies with brick-and mortar stores, location extensions are a valuable addition. They add a business address, phone number and map marker to the ad text. On mobile devices, a link to directions is also included. Location extensions typically increase click-through rates by about 10%.

A Couple Caveats. Google shows Ad Extensions at their discretion. We've found they're generally used 20% to 35% of the time. A high Quality Score and a large number of Ad Extensions tend to increase the frequency with which they're shown.

Bing Ads also offers similar Ad Extensions. In our experience, they haven't had the same beneficial effect as Google's Ad Extensions. Do some testing to learn what works best for you.

Ad Extensions offer one of the easiest possible ways to get more out of your pay-per-click advertising. If you're not using them already, give them a try!

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For helpful how-to articles from past issues of Let’s Grow, our newsletter of marketing insights for the garden industry, click on the links below.