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Getting the most out of responsive search ads

Posted on 20th July, 2018 by gregdoyle

Google Ads

Over recent years we’ve seen some big changes in the way that Google Ads (formerly Google Ads) works with more automated functionality being added thanks to Google’s commitment to machine learning. One of the latest changes is the introduction of responsive search ads and in this blog, we’re going to take a look at what they are and how you can use them to your advantage.

What are they?

According to Google “responsive search ads combine your creativity with the power of Google’s machine learning to help you deliver relevant, valuable ads.” The idea of responsive search adverts is that Google can dynamically generate adverts and automatically optimise for the best performing variations of your headlines and descriptions.

How do they work?

Advertisers need to provide between 3 and 15 headlines and 2 and 4 descriptions in order to use the new ads format. Google can then show up to 3 headlines at once and up to 2 descriptions for each variation. By testing the different variations and using machine learning, Google is able to determine which combination is likely to perform best for each search term based on the searcher’s intent.

What’s different?

One of the biggest differences between responsive search ads and standard text ads is the ability for adverts to take up much more real-estate. Responsive search ads are able to show 3 headlines at once and up to 2 descriptions which are each 90 characters instead of the standard 80 characters. You can also specify the width of your adverts which gives you more space to show these on mobile devices.

The advantages of the new format

There are plenty of reasons to choose the new responsive search ads format as an advertiser and here are some of the most compelling:

  • No need to split test – Whether you use management software or not, split testing your adverts is a time-consuming process, but thanks to responsive search ads, split testing could be a thing of the past.
  • Optimised performance – Advertisers on average see up to 15% more clicks in comparison to standard text adverts.
  • More relevant adverts – With the ability to show up to 3 headlines at once and two descriptions which are each 90 characters in length, responsive search adverts can be much more relevant to customers.
  • Show up for more searches – By using multiple headlines and descriptions and combinations of these your adverts will be eligible to appear in more auctions, giving more exposure.

Tips for using the new format

Responsive search ads are available for all advertisers and offer considerable time savings as well as better performance. To help you make the most out of them we’ve put together some quick tips to help you out.

  • Try to add at least 10 headlines to give Google more variations
  • Make sure your headlines are relevant to your keywords
  • Add additional information in your descriptions such as the problem you’re solving or additional product benefits
  • Try headlines of different lengths
  • Don’t be afraid of trying completely different descriptions

We’d love to know your thoughts on responsive search ads so feel free to share your experience in the comments section below.

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