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Punctuation & Structure Key to Successful PPC Ads

February 10th, 2011 by

Beginning February 3, 2011, Google is making a significant change in the ads that appear above the search results by giving them a longer headline.

 

In the past, only the headline was bold blue. Now, both the headline and the first line of the ad will be in bold blue, which more than doubles the length of the headline. A hyphen will be automatically inserted between the headline text and the first line of the ad.

 

Here are two example images Google posted on their Adwords blog.

 

Before:

 

After:

 

Why is Google making this change? In their own words:

We’ve found that the change results in higher clickthrough rates for ads that are shown with the longer headline, as well as other top ads that appear beside them. It also creates a better experience for users by highlighting more information in the ad.

 

Clearly, this change could have broad implications for you how structure your ads.

 

  • Aim for continuity between the title and first line of text since they could be displayed side by side.
  • Use the first line of your ad to make a complete statement and/or express a complete thought. (Don’t split a sentence between the first and second lines.)
  • Make sure your first line ends with proper punctuation – a period/full stop, question mark, or exclamation point.

 

With this change, it will be critical to test new PPC ads over the next weeks and months. Because if you don’t, your competitors will!

 

Better to capitalize on the new ad structure now, gain a competitive edge, and keep it for as long as you can.

 

ryan-healy About the Author: Ryan Healy is a direct response copywriter and BoostCTR writer. Since 2002, he has worked with scores of clients, including Alex Mandossian, Terry Dean, and Pulte Homes. Get a free 39-point copywriting check list when you visit his business growth blog.

 

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6 Responses to “Punctuation & Structure Key to Successful PPC Ads”

  1. [...] Prize List « Punctuation & Structure Key to Successful PPC Ads [...]

  2. [...] doing this, Google would then use the new ad structure whenever the ad appeared in the top ad positions — above the organic search results. The new ad structure gives you a much longer headline, [...]

  3. [...] but not least, the winning ad uses punctuation at the end of the first line to take advantage of Google’s modified title text format. I think the exclamation point at the end of the second line gives the ad a little extra punch, [...]

  4. [...] the winning ad uses punctuation at the end of the first line of body copy, it may also benefit from Google’s longer title text format. The losing ad does not have this advantage since the second sentence is divided between the first [...]

  5. [...] I had to make sure I used punctuation at the end of the first line of body copy to benefit from Google’s longer title structure. That was my [...]

  6. [...] ad breaks up the body copy into two distinct sentences on two separate lines, which capitalizes on Google’s extended title format. What’s more, the winning ad ends with an exclamation point, which often lifts [...]