by Neha Sharma
VP of Engineering, SearchForce Inc.
Enabling Ad Extensions in your Adwords campaign is an easy way to improve your CTR. With these extensions, you can add extra links to your ads – to relevant pages, product links, addresses, or phone numbers – that run along with your original text ad. You also can capture more screen real estate to make your ad even more prominent.
In addition to the existing, publicly available extensions, such as social, product, site link, phone, etc., Google is currently testing new ad extensions which are even more interactive and actionable. These extensions, now in beta, would allow users to take specific actions, such as subscribing to a newsletter or chatting with a sales person direct from the Google search results page itself.
Let’s take a look at some of these extensions and see how they might work to add more excitement and interest to your campaign.
Communication Ad Extensions: Engaging more users
This extension allows you to collect leads directly from your ad. You can configure it to enable sign ups to a news letter or other offers. Here are some samples of how this extension might be used.
The form can include one or two text input fields along with an action button. Once the user clicks the button, the information is sent to the advertiser. This is a great way to engage with users more immediately and capture additional leads from your ads to build a larger mailing list.
Form Ad Extension: Customizing the user experience
With a Form Ad Extension, you can ask for inputs that will be used as parameters on your landing page.
For example, if you have a web page that lists local deals based on Zip Code, you can ask for this information from within the Ad. When the user submits the form, that data will be appended as a parameter to the landing page URL.
A user entering a Zip Code will be directed to a deals page specific to that code. The landing page URL will look like this: http://www.landingpage.com/deals?param1=value1&zipcode=92731
Note that you will need to provide Adwords with the parameter name that you would like to append to the URL (for example, “zipcode” in the example above).
This extension is a great way to provide a more integrated and customized experience. Users can start transactions directly from your ad, such as using their Zip Code to get a quote for car insurance or selecting a city to find special hotel deals.
If you have web pages that read parameters from the URL to customize page results, you can easily start using the Form extension with no change on your web site. You just need to provide Adwords with the parameter name, which will be appended to the destination URL along with the user-provided value.
One thing to keep in mind, however, is that this extension can only contain one field, which can either be a text input box or a drop-down with up to 15 options.
Live Chat Ad Extension: Engage with more users interactively
With this extension, users can initiate live chat sessions by clicking on a “Live Chat” icon within your ad. This is an excellent way to attract users who are looking for answers, but want to avoid clicking from site to site.
This gives you an opportunity to engage live with prospects who are actually looking for answers, engaging directly with them to convert more leads to sales.
This extension essentially works as a “click to call” function for desktop and tablet users. Just make sure your creative is compelling enough for someone to be interested in chatting with someone from your organization. Also note that this extension requires a dedicated 24/7 customer representative team to be available to chat with users.
More tools for converting prospects and building your list
As I noted, these extensions are still in beta, so you will need to contact Adwords if you want to enable them for your account.
These extensions add more tools to your SEM arsenal that can help you succeed in a highly competitive environment. Now that organic results are being pushed further and further down the Google results page, users are more likely to click and engage with your ads, so don’t miss out on taking advantage of some creative and strategic opportunities to use these new Ad Extensions.