Writing great ads doesn’t always come from the same formula, but there are some important guidelines to consider, especially when aiming for conversions. PPC advertising pretty much abolished the “it just feels right” attitude to creating advertising content.
You should put just as much time and effort into writing your ads as you did building your campaigns.
In this post, we’ll help you get started. Follow our guide for best practices of adwords content writing.
Understand Your Target (Clicks come from real humans)
We can all be guilty of neglecting our targeting mindset once we’ve established keywords and campaign setup, but if you don’t think about your target audience while writing the ad copy, you’re definitely going to miss out on some key converting traffic.
Demographics and location targeting can be done via settings, but when it comes to psychographics, ad copy is the key. Have a look at the search terms generated from generic keywords to get insight on the minds of the consumer.
For example, if you’re bidding on the keyword “hair brush”, you might see large number of clicks for search terms like “durable hair brush”, or “hair brush always breaks”. You can identify durability as a pain point and use it to your advantage when writing the ads.
Include Keyword in Headline
Your headline is typically the first thing seen by a searcher and it sets the bar for how they interact with your ad. Aside from writing ads that speak to your audience as a whole, the headline should contain a target keywords from its associated campaign.
Including your keyword in headline ensures your ad is relevant to what your audience is searching for. This helps Google identify and show your ad appropriately and it helps the searcher identify a helpful solution.
Relevance: Keyword In The Ad…Twice!
One way to improve your conversion rate is to eliminate irrelevant clicks.
By making sure your keyword is both in the headline and elsewhere in the ad – assuming your keyword is highly relevant to what you are trying to sell – it is way more likely that person will
- Be interested in your page
- Take your desired action
Why twice? Having the keyword in the headline is essential for maintaining a high ad relevance & quality score. While ad descriptions are notorious for being overlooked by users, if your keyword is in the description, Google will automatically bold the keyword drawing attention to your 80 character description, so use it wisely
For example, with one particular client who sells beauty products, we saw a significant increase in both click-through rate and conversion rate by including the keyword in both the headline and the path.
The more informed someone is before clicking your ad, the more valuable that person is and worth your precious PPC budget dollars. Not to mention, ad relevance is a key component of quality score and helps get your ad that coveted #1 spot without sacrificing CPC.
Your ad headline is the most important element of the ad and will play the biggest part in attracting browsers to your PPC ad, so make it scannable and attention-grabbing to persuade them to click on it. The headline comprises of two 30-character headlines separated by a hyphen, giving you a total of 60 characters to play with.
The headline should be reserved for the most important messaging around your targeted keywords. Speak directly to the customer using ‘you’ and ‘your’ and write in title case as you would a headline for a blog post. Keep your messaging relevant, including unique benefits of the searcher going to your landing page over your competitors’ pages.
Where possible, include specific stats and numbers such as ‘get 50% off’ or ‘from just £9.99’, and create urgency by adding a call to action such as ‘buy now’, ‘sign up today’ or ‘shop for a limited time only’ to draw prospects in.
Our Bowler Hat ad above uses the headline to draw browsers to click on the ad. The first part of the headline portrays the main message by using keywords to match what the searcher is looking for – PPC in Birmingham. The second 30-character headline uses a call to action to communicate the benefit of clicking on the ad – a free PPC audit.
Showcase your Unique Qualities
Every business is created with its own unique purpose. This purpose is what separates you from your competition and drives searchers to click on your ads and offer you their business. Use the description lines of your ad copy to illustrate this purpose to your audience.
Show them through text, why they should choose to work with your business and highlight these valuable selling points. If your business offers free shipping on all products, include a line of description text that says, “Free Shipping on All Orders!” If your business offers a lifetime guarantee, share it with your audience to showcase more compelling reasons to click your ad and the potential to turn that lead into a customer.
The description gives you 80 characters to add more information to persuade browsers to click your ad. Your description should complement your headline and add value, so avoid repeating information already featured to truly utilise the space.
Use this space to highlight the most valuable benefits of your product or service and what makes you unique as opposed to your competitors. Think about what the searcher is searching for and how you can best meet their needs so that when users click your ad they find exactly what they’re searching for and their needs and goals are met.
Again, use ‘you’ to personally speak to your prospect and use keywords that are relevant to their search. Triggering positive and negative emotion can be effective here to impel customers to click, as are stats and calls to action.
The description used in the example above further persuades browsers to click on the ad by highlighting valuable benefits which meet the searcher’s goals – converting browsers into buyers with performance-focused display campaigns.
Include a CTA
Our PPC experts have noticed a pattern that some users will click on an ad, then end up purchasing a product that is completely different from what they were initially searching for. This goes to show, as much as you understand your audience, their purchasing patterns and motives can be unpredictable. Each ad you create needs to have a clear call-to-action (CTA) that will give searchers that little extra push in the right direction.
A CTA is a line of text that motivates a searcher to follow through on the action you intend they take. Reflect on your business and the goals you’re using AdWords to accomplish. Are you looking to drive foot traffic, generate sales, or submit a form? Depending on your goal, include a CTA in your ad copy that will push your audience further along in the sales cycle.
Ad extensions give you the opportunity to add even more valuable benefits to your audience and give them more reasons to click your ad and inspire them to take action. This also extends your ad and makes it even more visible to browsers. Each extension is 25 characters and there is a variety of different ad extensions to choose from to provide your audience with all the extra bits of information they need to know.
Ad extensions range from sitelinks that link to pages on your site, callouts which add extra bits of information, to adding reviews, your company’s locations, your phone number, customer ratings, prices, and structured snippets which allow you to describe features of a product or range of services you offer. Choose the extensions that are most relevant to your ad and will provide the most value to your prospect.
Our example ad uses a number of ad extensions, including a call extension to get in touch, sitelinks which link to relevant pages on our site like ‘PPC Case Studies’, callouts which highlight extra benefits like ‘Google Premier Partner’, and structured snippets of our services, like ‘PPC Audits & Management’. You do not need to use all these extensions in your ads, you simply need to ensure you keep them relevant and valuable. Most of the time the minimum extensions we use are callouts and sitelinks, I’ve used so many here to demonstrate what a fully extended ad can include and look like.
Get Creative and Experiment
With so much freedom to experiment, there are hundreds of different strategies for writing quality AdWord copy. Marketers are special because they tend to have a delicate balance of creative and analytical skills, both of which really shine when it comes to copywriting.
The key takeaway from this would be that while ads are short and sweet, the ad copies should be written strategically, and then tested to ensure you are getting the most out of your AdWords budget.
Make it Sound Natural
I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “people don’t like to be sold, but they love to buy.” This saying rings true about the effect ad copy has on your audience. Your ads are a gateway to building trust with your audience and providing them with a genuine solution. Your ad text should convey your product or service and your business in an honest and natural way as opposed to sounding desperate or insincere.
The beauty of Google Adwords is, your potential customers are actively searching for your products or services, so half the battle is won. Approach writing ad copy with the mentality that your audience is your equal and they’re simply looking for real, honest answers to their questions.
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