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Digital Marketing

How to Write Effective Google Ads

Best Practices for Ad Copy in Google Ads

Ad copy is one of the most important components to succeeding in your Google Ads campaign. In this article, we'll lay out some of the best practices for creating effective ad copy in Google Ads.

Google Ads Best Practices Ad Copy

There are lots of elements to string together a good campaign in Google Ads including the keywords you choose, the landing pages, and the actual ad copy of your ads. In this article, we’ll focus on the keys to writing good ad copy in Google Ads.

The User & The Engine

When thinking about writing ad copy for a new ad there are a couple of key considerations and some best practices to use. First off, when I think about writing the ad, I want to make sure that I am optimizing for the users as well as Google. What do I mean by that?

There is a lot of overlap between what works for Google and what works for the users, but it is not always a perfect match. I generally think of the difference here is the difference between “Ad Relevance” and “Expected CTR.” The quality score is composed of ad relevance, expected CTR, and landing page experience.

Ad Relevance

Ad relevance measures how closely related your keywords are to your ads. If your keyword is “excel corporate training” then you’ll want to include those terms within your ad once or twice. Keyword matching is critical for creating relevant ads for Google.

Expected CTR

As for expected CTR (click-through rate), that depends on the users. This measures / predicts how likely your ad is to get clicked on. In order to score well here, you’ll want to create compelling copy to drive people to your ads. An ad for “excel corporate training” that reads “Excel Corporate Training | Excel Training for Business” might do well on ad relevance but isn’t too compelling for the users. 

Best Practices for Great Ad Copy

Now that we got some of the technical stuff out of the way, let’s dive into some of the best practices for writing great ad copy for Google Ads. 

1. Keyword Matching 

As mentioned earlier, keyword matching is critical for your ad relevance which feeds into quality score. While this isn’t the most important part of ad copy, I put it as #1 because it is one of the easiest and most impactful things you can do. Simply adding in the keywords once or twice in your ad should improve your ad relevance.

2. Clear Value Prop

In order to write compelling ad copy for the users, you need to drive home your value proposition. Think about what makes your offering stand out from the other providers or ads for that keyword. If you have a special offer going on, include that.

3. Call-to-Action

A best practice in marketing, in general, is to have clear call-to-actions and that remains true in this domain. Let people know what action you want them to take with your ad whether it be to sign up for an email list, buy a product, or something else. 

4. Ad Extensions

Leverage ad extensions for your ad - I like to think of them as free real estate and another opportunity to sell your offering. Ad extensions like sitelink extensions, callout extensions, or any of the other ones offered a great opportunity to add additional information to your ad and also take up more space in the SERP with your content.

Sitelink extensions specifically can help your customers self-select into the right landing page. For example, the keyword is “excel classes” then your sitelink extensions could be “beginner excel classes,” “advanced excel classes,” “excel bootcamp,” and “excel corporate training.” This enables users to easily self-select into the right category.

Callout extensions can help you call out extra perks or benefits of your product or service. Examples of these are “free shipping,” “great customer service,” “affordable pricing,” or anything else that might draw someone's interest and strengthen your offering. 

5. Experiment

Lastly - test, test, test! You never really know what’s going to work until you go out and try on real people. Thankfully, with digital marketing, you can test things constantly. Within Google Ads, you can have multiple pieces of ad copy running at a given time in each ad group to see what works.

With ad rotation optimization, you can have Google rotate your ads and show the best-performing ones more frequently. The general safe recommendation is to have 3 or 4 ads per ad group with ad rotation optimization on and regularly switch out the poorest performers for new ads. Over time you’ll keep improving your ads and learn what resonates with users for a variety of keywords.

Recap

If you follow these best practices for ad copy with Google Ads, you should be in pretty shape to succeed with your ad copy. While ad copy is only one part of the equation in Google Ads, it is a big part and it is the first thing a potential customer sees when searching so you want to make a good impression.