Google has created a temporary opportunity for AdWords advertisers to have a competitive advantage by switching to their new Expanded Text Ad Format.  The new ad format results in a physically bigger ad, occupying a greater share of the search results real estate.  A larger ad is more noticeable and leads to higher click through rates.  I say this from experience, having implemented them with ALL of my AdWords clients.

What are expanded text ads?

Going from the standard text ad format to the new Expanded Text Ad Format gives you more text to work with, more than the previous standard text ads in a few important ways. The important differences are:

  • Two 30 character headline fields
  • An 80 character description field
  • Using your final URL’s domain as the display URL
  • Two path fields that can be used in the display URL


google-adwords-expanded-text-adsThe first two of these changes are the most significant, as the images above depict.  The New Expanded Text Ad on the left is clearly much larger and more prominent.  When you are the only ad format on the search results using the new format, your click through rates might jump as much as 30% to 50%.  Of course, this advantage only lasts as long as your competition lags behind in updating your ads.  Conversely, the disadvantage lasts as long as you lag behind.

I have been asked “Can you still use the old Standard Text Ads?”  Yes you can, but why?  As Google continues to tweak their search results pages, it become increasingly important to stand out, not to blend in with the other noise.

Overall the new ad format gives you almost 50% more space, 50% more opportunity to deliver a compelling message to your audience.