Effective Google Ads Copy

How to Write Effective Google Ads Copy: Tricks of the Trade10 min read

Competing on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) isn’t just about boosting your rankings through good SEO and a decent ad budget—it involves creating copy that’s compelling enough to attract clicks. In this blog post, we’ll cover how to write Google Ads copy that’s both relevant and engaging – effectively transforming searchers into visitors.

Understand Your Audience

The first step in crafting convincing ad copy is to understand who your target audience is. Incorporate relevant keywords in your headlines and descriptions while avoiding keyword stuffing; using a keyword repetitively makes your copy appear spammy. Remember that you’re vying for the user’s click against other search results, so the wording you use should set you apart and offer clear reasons why clicking on your ad is the best next step.

Focus on User Benefits

When writing ad copy, it’s essential to focus on what the user stands to gain from your product or service. This “benefits-focused” approach is more likely to resonate with your audience, as it directly addresses their needs and wants. For example, if you’re advertising a fitness app, instead of saying “Our app has 1000+ workout routines,” you could say, “Find your perfect workout routine and achieve your fitness goals with our app.” This reframes the feature (1000+ workout routines) as a benefit (achieving fitness goals), making it more appealing.

Use Targeted Keywords

The most important component in your ad strength is the keywords that your audience is likely using to search. You should incorporate the same keywords in your ad copy that you are bidding on in your campaign. Tools like Semrush, Ahrefs, and Moz are helpful for finding highly searched, low-competition terms relevant to your offering. Google also has a free Keyword Planner tool to help you build your keyword list based on search trends, forecasts, and bid estimates.

Complement your keywords with power words that can provoke emotion or action. Words like “free,” “instant,” and “exclusive” can go a long way.

Top it all off with a clear call-to-action (CTA). This is crucial in guiding the user on what to do next – so use action phrases like “Visit,” “Check out,” and “Call” to encourage clicks. Using these terms can significantly improve your Google Ads’ click-through rate (CTR), leading to higher ad rankings at potentially lower costs.

Be Specific with Your Offering

It’s important to be precise and clear about what you’re offering. Vague or generic ad copy may attract a lot of clicks, but it may not convert. The more specific you are about your product, service, or offer, the more you’ll attract targeted users who will likely act on your offer. For instance, if you’re a travel agency advertising discounted trips to Hawaii, don’t just say “discounted trips.” Be specific and say, “20% off on all-inclusive Hawaii vacation packages.”

Ensure Relevance to Your Landing Page

It’s essential to align your ad copy with the content on your landing page. For instance, let’s say you’re running an ad campaign for a new line of eco-friendly yoga mats. Your Google Ads copy might read: “Experience Comfort and Sustainability with Our New Eco-Friendly Yoga Mats. Click Now to Shop!” When a potential customer clicks on your ad, they should be directed to a landing page featuring these eco-friendly yoga mats. The theme, messaging, and imagery on the landing page should all match this concept of comfort and sustainability. If your landing page focuses on a general catalog of miscellaneous fitness products or discusses a different line of yoga mats, it will create a disconnect— potentially confusing the customer and causing them to abandon your site.

Another reason your landing page is so important is because it factors into your Quality Score (a gauge Google uses to determine your ad’s position and cost-per-click). So not only will having a targeted landing page keep visitors on your site, but it will also help you to rank better while saving you money.

Writing Google Ads Copy That Works: Let’s Get Technical

Leverage Unique Headline and Description Combinations

Google Ads’ responsive search ads automate the process of mixing and matching headlines and descriptions to best serve the individual searcher. Therefore, utilizing a variety of unique headline and description combinations within your Google Ads copy allows you to tap into various aspects of your product or service that may appeal to different segments of your target audience.

For instance, one user might be looking for affordability, while another might prioritize quality. By using diverse ad copy, you’re more likely to appeal to these distinct needs and interests and increase your potential reach and engagement.

It’s important to note that while variety is beneficial, maintaining relevance and consistency with your brand message is paramount. All your headlines and descriptions should accurately reflect your offering and align with the content on your landing page.

Check Ad Strength

Monitoring your ad strength is crucial in writing effective ad copy. Google Ads provides an
“ad strength” indicator that gives you a real-time estimate of how effective your ad will be. It measures the relevance, quantity, and diversity of your ad copy, providing suggestions for improvement. The indicator ranges from “poor” to “excellent,” helping you to understand how well your ad might perform.

Optimize Your Display URL

Optimizing the display URL, or vanity URL, can also contribute to improved CTR. While not clickable, this component gives potential customers an idea of where they will be directed when clicking the ad. Use this opportunity to reinforce your message or brand while also inserting target keywords in the path. For instance, a pet supplies business bidding on the keyword ‘dog food’ might use a display URL like ‘www.example.com/Dog-Food’. This reassures users that they’ll be directed to a page specifically dealing with dog food, aligning with their search intent.

Master the Art of Google Ads Headlines

We already talked about including the right keywords in your headline to make your ad more relevant to the user’s search.  Just be sure you avoid stuffing your headline with keywords at the expense of readability and relevance.

Additionally, consider the length of your headline. Google Ads allows for up to 30 characters in a headline. Be succinct and to the point. A concise, informative headline can effectively communicate the value your product or service offers.

It’s also often a good idea to incorporate your brand name into one of your Google Ads headlines. This step ensures your brand is instantly recognizable and adds a layer of credibility to your ad, as searchers often associate brand names with established and reliable entities.

Google Ads allows you to pin your headline in a specific position. This guarantees that it will appear in the position you want, granting you more control over how your ad is presented to users. However, pinning restricts Google’s automatic optimization process, which in turn limits the ability of the platform to adjust your ad presentation based on user behavior and search context. Therefore, be careful when choosing what and when to pin. If the pinned headline isn’t compelling or relevant to a user’s search, it could result in lower click-through rates.

A powerful and underutilized feature offered by Google Ads is the ability to include dynamic variables in Google Ads headlines. Using one of these variables — for example, location or keyword — can significantly enhance the relevancy of your ads, resulting in a higher likelihood of attracting clicks from potential customers.

  • Keyword insertion allows you to automatically update your ads to include the exact keywords a searcher used in their query. For example, if you run a pet store and bid on the keywords “dog food,” “cat toys,” and “bird cage,” using keyword insertion in your headline such as “{Keyword: Pet Supplies}” will replace the term ‘Pet Supplies’ with the exact term the searcher used. This means the ad headline could read “Buy Dog Food,” “Shop for Cat Toys,” or “Bird Cage Available,” depending on what the searcher typed.
  • Location insertion can be highly impactful. For example, a headline like “Top-Rated {Location: Local} Pizza Delivery” will automatically update to include the searcher’s city (“Top-Rated Chicago Pizza Delivery”), thereby increasing the likelihood of the ad being clicked.
  • Countdowns can be incredibly effective when promoting limited-time offers or events. The ticking timer works on a psychological level to encourage potential customers to act quickly, lest they miss out on the offer. For instance, if you’re running a promotional sale that ends in seven days, you can set up a countdown in your ad copy like this: “Hurry! Sale ends in {=COUNTDOWN(“2022/12/31 23:59:59”, “EN”, 7)}.” This feature will automatically adjust each day, maintaining a seven-day countdown at all times.

Use Descriptions That Work

Descriptions in your Google Ads copy provide substantial context to your headline and allow you to elaborate on your offering’s details more comprehensively. As with headlines, it’s important to include highly searched, relevant keywords as well as unique selling propositions (USPs) and call-to-actions. In addition, there are several best practices that will allow you to make the most of your Google Ads descriptions.

Avoid Superfluous Information

Google Ads allows two 90-character descriptions, providing you with ample space to expand your message. However, it’s crucial not to waste valuable description space on information users already know. Instead, focus on details that are unique to your product or service.

Break Up Thoughts with Periods

When writing Google Ads copy, it’s important to maintain clarity in your message. One effective method is to break up your thoughts with periods. This strategy can make your content more digestible and help to highlight key points. Keep in mind that in the fast-paced world of online advertising, clarity and brevity are key.

Use Social Proof

Leveraging social proof in your descriptions can significantly enhance your ad’s credibility and appeal. If your business has won awards, don’t hesitate to mention them. Similarly, if you have a substantial number of five-star reviews, highlight them. Even just stating how long you’ve been in business can serve as a testament to your experience and stability in the industry.

Complement Your Ad Copy with Assets

Assets, or ad extensions, allow you to include additional information about your business directly within your ad. They expand your ad’s real estate on search results page while making it more enticing to the user.

There are numerous types of assets that you can utilize, which we’ll cover in an upcoming blog post. A few of the more popular extensions include call extensions, location extensions, Sitelinks, and structured snippets. Each extension serves a unique purpose and adds information to your ad. For example, call extensions add a clickable phone number to your ad, making it easy for potential customers to contact you. Location extensions display your business’s physical address, which can be particularly useful for local businesses.

By providing extra details about your business, assets can result in higher click-through rates and better conversion rates. It’s also worth noting that ad extensions can improve your ad’s ranking in the search results, as Google considers the expected impact of ad extensions when calculating Ad Rank.

Test, Test, Test!

When it comes to writing Google Ads copy, it’s important to remember that there is no one-size-fits-all approach: It’s important to test different versions of your ads to see what works best for you. Try running A/B tests with different headlines or descriptions to see which ones get the most clicks. Remember, creating good ad copy is an iterative process that requires continual testing, monitoring, and refining.

Need More Help? Contact the Experts

As you can see, writing effective Google Ads copy is both an art and a science. There are many factors to consider and limited real estate that needs to be used advantageously.

While these tips will help you to create better copy, consulting an expert will get you the best results. Our team at Sharp Innovations has many years of experience in crafting highly effective ad copy, selecting the right keywords, and setting up and managing all the other components that go into a successful paid search campaign. Contact us today to see how we can help you to grow your customer base through targeted search ads.