Google ads are one of the most effective online advertising techniques used to generate sales. Millions of users go on Google every single day in search of solutions. While some of them are looking for general information, a significant portion of search queries has buyer intent. Those keywords are the kinds that most brands target with their Google ads campaigns.
Unfortunately, creating the perfect Google ads copy that converts is not exactly straightforward. For starters, Google has tons of regulations that advertisers are expected to follow. Moreover, advertisers are given limited real estate on the search engine results page. You have about 30 characters for your headline and 90 characters for descriptions.
So, how can you write effective Google ads that convert while playing within Google’s rulebook? In this article, we’ll share nine techniques for writing high-converting Google ad copies. These best practices have proven effective for different businesses ranging from SaaS and real estate to publishing and ecommerce.
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About Google Search Ads:
On June 30, 2022, Google sunset its Expanded Text Ads. The new format marketers can now use is called Responsive Ads. The main difference between these two formats is that in Responsive Ads, Google creates the final ad for you, mixing and matching the headline and description copy variants you provide. While this gives marketers slightly less control over the final ad copy, it’s reported that this ad format observes higher conversion rates.
How to write Google Ads: best practices
Following Google’s best practices for ads is the secret to writing Google search ads that convert. Creating successful Google ad campaigns also requires a bit of experimentation. That’s because there is no one-size-fits-all approach that guarantees results for all brands. You’ll need to fine-tune your campaign to suit your needs and target audience.
So, here is here are the best practices to follow while writing Google ads copy:
- Match ad copy with the search term
- Highlight what makes you unique
- Focus on the outcome
- Provide a great call to action
- Use numbers, prices, and abbreviations
- Use ratings and social proof
- Promote your sales and offers
- Keep your ads up to date
- Be as local as possible
Bonus: Use these Google ads copy templates and create your first ad campaigns today!
1. Match ad copy with the search term
Keywords play a critical role in Search Ads. If you want your ads to perform well, you have to know what keywords you should target. That means doing keyword research to know the terms and phrases used by your target audience. Then, bidding for those keywords. But it doesn’t end there.
Your ad copy should also match the search term used by your audience. So let’s say you want to target the keyword “project management tool.” Your efforts shouldn’t stop at bidding for the keyword or its variations. You must also align your ad copy with the search query by mentioning the keyword.
Why is that important? Echoing the keyword or search term helps align your copy with the users’ expectations or needs. It shows users that your ad has what they are looking for.
Not only that, but it also boosts your Google ad score. The presence of the keyword in your ad copy shows the search engine that your text ads are relevant to the search intent. A high ad quality score improves your cost per conversion, enhancing the overall return on investment of your Google ad campaign.
That’s why the best Google ads always include keywords in the heading or description.
To wrap it up, boost ad relevance by including the target keyword phrase in your ad copy. And as you can see above, this doesn’t mean stuffing your copy with keywords. Each Google ad above has included the keyword “project management tool” only once. They then use the rest of the characters to describe why their tools are the best. That brings us to the next point.
Related: How to leverage keyword mapping to optimize the buyer’s journey
2. Highlight what makes you unique
If a particular keyword has a high buyer intent or generates tons of qualified traffic, it’s bound to have stiff competition. Most brands will want a piece of that cake. It’s just the way things are. For example, in the “project management tool” search query highlighted above, you saw four brands competing for that traffic.
What would make a potential customer click one of the four ads? That’s where Google ads copywriters earn their checks.
Highlighting what makes your product or service unique is one of the most effective ways to boost your Google ads’ click-through rates (CTR). For example, in the screenshot above, you can see ClickUp saying they’re the “all-in-one” suite. They also mention several other vital features.
This technique is used across many industries. In the legal niche, for instance, you’ll notice personal injury law firms saying stuff like “No Win No Fee.”
Therefore, consider what makes your product offering unique while creating your Google Ads. Do you have a flexible return policy? Do you offer free and fast shipping? What distinguishes you from other businesses within your niche?
It may also help to check what other advertisers say in the existing Google ads for the keywords you’re bidding for. Then, add something unique to your Google ads copy to make it stand out.
3. Focus on the outcome
Most businesses have multiple product offerings. For example, you’ll find an ecommerce store with several product lines. A law firm with multiple practices. A SaaS company with several digital products. And so on.
However, it’s never a good idea to write a single Google ad copy where you’re trying to sell all your product offerings. That’s especially true when the user has already specified what they want in the search term.
Let’s say a user is looking for a personal injury attorney in New York. In that case, there’s no point targeting them with an ad copy talking about other fields of law your firm practices. Likewise, if the user specifies on their search query that they’re looking for an “SEO agency,” your marketing agency’s Google ad should focus on that. Not paid media or other services.
Here is the thing. When your Google ad stays focused on what the user wants, it minimizes distractions, increasing the chances of conversion. Therefore, your ad copy and the landing page should focus on what the user is interested in.
So, for example, if we wanted to run a Google ads campaign for the GetResponse Website Builder tool, we wouldn’t try to squeeze all the additional tools available on GetResponse. Doing so will only introduce distractions that could delay or even prevent the conversion.
Instead of cramping all features in a single search ad, use Google’s ad groups to create multiple campaigns targeting different search intents. You can use each ad group to promote each product offering. You can then create multiple responsive search ads t under the different ad groups.
Similarly, you’ll need to create a landing page for each ad group. Remember, a landing page should always mirror the ad. A poor landing page that’s inconsistent with the ad will hurt your conversions. So, ensure the landing page promotes the same product and offers mentioned in the search ad.
Did you know? With GetResponse, you can send email marketing campaigns, build landing pages, and run Google ads using one simplified yet powerful platform. Get started completely free, or learn more about our Google ads solution.
4. Provide a great call to action
Whatever industry you’re in, you run ads intending to encourage consumers to do a specific task. An excellent way of getting customers to complete this task is by using a powerful call to action (CTA).
A call to action tells users what they should do next. It also helps the user know what to expect when they click your ad. For example, if the CTA is something like “Start Free Trial,” the user will know the destination page will ask them to sign up. That’s relevant if they want to sign up. But if they don’t, the CTA will help them know that your ad is not relevant to them.
For example, they were simply looking for more information about the target keywords. They didn’t want to sign up for any tool. In that case, your CTA has actually saved you from paying for an unqualified click.
Therefore, writing a great call to action doesn’t just increase the CTR of your Google ads. It can also optimize your return on investment (ROI) by reducing irrelevant clicks.
Unfortunately, this is another area that requires lots of experimentation. You’ll need to run split tests or A/B testing to identify the best CTAs in your industry. Still, consider reinforcing the benefits of your product in the CTA. You should also use actionable and emotive words. For example, Start Your Free Trial, Start For Free, Get It Now, etc.
Ultimately, you’ll need to pick and experiment with CTAs that are relevant to your goals. For example, if the goal is to increase sign-ups for something, you’ll need a relevant CTA. You can even experiment with Google lead form extension ads. If, on the other hand, you want users to learn more about a particular subject, don’t use a CTA that will imply there’s a transaction involved. This is where you can test CTAs like “Learn More.”
You can also use ad extensions leading to several landing pages from your Google ads. These extensions can be accessed from your Google ads account. They provide a great way to optimize your CTR. Not all users will be interested in signing up for your tool. Others want to compare multiple products. Some would want to check the pricing first. Therefore, don’t limit your users’ options. Instead, provide several target pages that are of interest to your target audience.
That’s what Atlassian has done with the Google ad above. They’ve offered four relevant destinations from a single ad.
5. Use numbers, prices, and abbreviations
Incorporating numbers, prices, and abbreviations into your ad copy is one of the most effective ways to make your ad stand out. Numbers grab users’ attention. They also put your claims into perspective.
For example, instead of saying they’re the cheapest web hosting provider, Hostgator points out the specific starting price point.
Look for opportunities to add numbers within your ad copy and make them as specific as possible. For example, you can mention the number of customers currently using your product if you’re a SaaS company. A law firm could mention the number of cases won. You can also mention the star rating of your product or service as reviewed by customers.
6. Use ratings and social proof
Social proof helps people justify their choices and feel confident that they’ve picked the right product or service. This is something to consider when writing your ad copy.
Take the below screenshot, for example. A consumer is much more likely to choose one of the options with ratings displayed in their ad. The tree service with no reviews may be just as good as the other two, but there is no proof.
Including reviews and ratings is an excellent way of providing social proof. If a person is undecided about your product and sees a glowing review or high average rating, this may be enough to convince them. Knowing that other people have bought your product and had good experiences increases potential customers’ confidence in your product.
7. Promote your sales and offers
Highlighting your current sales and offers is another helpful tip. As well as social proof, consumers often compare prices to make decisions on products and services. A good deal that can save customers money could draw them in and convince them to purchase.
The screenshot below is an excellent example of promoting your offers in an ad copy.
If you have an ongoing sale, point it out in your ad copy. You can even use expanded text ads and include your offers in the second and third headlines like ASOS did to make your ad stand out. Customers love deals, so including them in your ad copy can make all the difference between a customer clicking your ad or the competitor’s.
8. Keep your ads up to date
Update your ads frequently. Check the links to ensure they are still relevant to your ads. For example, if your first Google ads campaign ad had a promotion, make sure the offer is still live. Otherwise, update the ad copy.
Clicking on a link only to discover that the offer is no longer available can frustrate potential customers. They’ll likely feel tricked, which will hurt your conversion rate and brand reputation. You don’t want that.
So, audit your Google ads regularly to ensure they’re up to date. Check the landing pages, too, to ensure it’s still relevant.
9. Be as local as possible
Creating hyperlocal ads is more about personalization and relevance than anything else. A hyperlocal Google ad will help the target audience see that your solution is uniquely tailored to their needs. That translates to more engagements and conversions.
Therefore, while writing your ad copy, ensure they are as local as possible. One easy way to do that is by using a local phone number in the call-out extensions offered on the Google ads platform.
In addition, you can mention items like your location in the ad copy. This is particularly relevant for local businesses like law firms, real estate, restaurants, and schools.
The headline reads “NYC Personal Injury Lawyer,” making the ad more relevant to the local audience in New York City. This headline will also qualify for “near me” searches.
Use these Google ads copy templates today
Now that we’ve covered the best practices for writing effective search ads grab these Google ad templates and create your first campaign today!
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Pro tip: Not sure about investing in your first ad campaign? Remember that you can get up to $500 in free Google Ads credit when you spend your first $500 with Google Ads. Google will automatically match any amount you spend on ads for the first 30 days, up to $500 (or currency equivalent).