9 Google Ad Extensions to Boost Your CTR [Updated 2021]
This blog post has been updated for 2019.
A vastly underutilized feature in a number of Google Ads (formerly known as AdWords) accounts is the ad extension.
Ad extensions allow you to take up more real estate on the SERP, providing additional links to your site, special discounts and offers, and other information that can draw people in and increase your click-through rates (CTRs). In this guide, we’ll be walking through each of the AdWords ad extensions in detail, showing you how they work, when they work, and why you’d want to leverage them.
Location Extensions (& Affiliate Location Extensions)
With location extensions, you can drive foot traffic to your business—whether it’s a clothing store, a coffee shop, or an auto garage—by displaying your address, the distance from the Google user to your address, or mapped directions to your address.
Location extensions are essential to any business’ local Search advertising efforts, and they’ll only become more so thanks to the increasing prevalence of local queries searched via mobile. Local queries are often searched with relatively high commercial intent—so neglecting location extensions is a costly error.
Brands and manufacturers that sell their products in large retail chains should leverage affiliate location extensions for the same reasons.
Call extensions enable you to encourage prospective customers to call your business directly. These provide tremendous opportunities for meaningful engagement with prospects, which is especially important for advertisers who need to overcome initial feelings of skepticism (e.g., lawyers, car dealers, academic tutors, etc.)
Call extensions come in two forms: your phone number (on desktop) and a call button (on mobile).
With the former, prospects have to actually pick up their phones and call. With the latter, the button will automatically connect them to you.
A click on a call button is the same as a click on any other Search ad, so it does cost you money. In the Google Ads UI, you can turn on call reporting to ensure you’re keeping track of which ads drive the most phone calls.
When you’re directing a prospect to a landing page, it’s crucial that you match their intent as precisely as possible. If someone is looking for window blinds and you direct her to a landing page that catalogs every single one of your products, you’re going to lose that conversion.
That’s why sitelinks are so effective. At no additional cost to you, sitelink extensions allow you to entice Search prospects with deep links that lead to specific pages across your website.
With a single text ad, you can match several unique forms of intent. As you can imagine, sitelinks do wonders for your CTRs.
When you’re advertising in a competitive landscape, you need to do everything you can to differentiate yourself from your industry rivals. Often, that translates into special offers.
Whether you’re promoting free delivery on orders over a certain price or 24/7 customer service, Google Ads callout extensions give you the additional SERP real estate to do so.
Considering the bottom-of-funnel nature of callout extensions, it follows that it’s best to leverage them when a prospect searches something with high commercial intent. If you toss out special offers to searchers who are just beginning their customer journeys, you’re likely going to see a drop in CTR.
Structured Snippet Extensions
Adhering to a logic similar to that of sitelink extensions, structured snippet extensions enable you to list the specific products, services, or (in the case of a travel agency, for instance) destinations you offer. Rather than hyperlinks, they’re shown below your ad description in a list format preceded by a header:
As is the case with callout extensions, structured snippets are designed to differentiate yourself, provide additional information, and entice clicks from your prospects.
As consumers, we all know that price is a major factor—if not the biggest factor—when deciding whether or not to buy something. Your prospects think no differently.
When someone sees your text ad in the Search results, there’s no guarantee that she’s going to click through to your website and hunt down the pricing information. Even worse, if your competitor’s ad is directly below yours and theirs does provide pricing information, it’s a safe bet that she’s clicking on their ad.
Enter: Google Ads price extensions.
As you can see here, this hair salon uses a price extension to let prospects know how much a custom hair coloring will cost. If someone who sees this ad considers $10 a fair price, that extension could very well be the reason he clicks and converts.
And, finally, we have Google Ads app extensions. As you’ve probably intuited, app extensions are used to entice prospects to download your app. They’re shown for mobile searches.
To make a click even more enticing, app-focused ads display ratings, the number of people who’ve submitted ratings, and the price (if there is one).
If your business has a mobile app and you consider a download an important conversion, app extensions are a must.
You may remember Google rolling out image extensions in 2013...or maybe not since it never really worked out. But as of Google Marketing Livestream 2021, this extension is up and running and available to all. Get everything you need to know in our Easy Guide to Google Image Extensions.