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PPC Ad Text Win of the Week – 94% Improvement for Hunch

December 14th, 2010 by

NOTE: As we announced yesterday we’ll be becoming more active here on the blog. The following post is the first in a series of weekly installments reviewing the highest percent increase amongst BoostCTR writers on the Boost platform. Each week we’ll not only show the best percent increase, we’ll also dissect and analyze why the winning ad actually won, providing readers with a series of real-life examples of what works, what works better, and why when it comes to ad text optimization.


During the past week, BoostCTR writer “wordisborn” was optimizing for Boost CTR client Hunch, a personalized recommendation that helps users answer questions like “what should I eat for dinner?” and find things like the best women’s hipster clothing. One of wordisborn’s ads got one of the biggest wins with a 94% improvement over Hunch’s control ad for popular digital cameras.


You can see the new champion on the left and the old control on the right:




So why did the ad written by “wordisborn” perform so much better?


While I can’t say for sure, I can make some educated guesses.

  • “Top” is a shorter, easier word to read than “Popular.”
  • Starting the second line with the number 101 may be visually more noticeable to searchers and draw their attention faster.
  • The phrase “See which is best” promises a clear outcome, while the phrase “Get a customized result” is slightly ambiguous.

If I were to draw a conclusion, I’d say the reason the new ad won by such a large margin is because of clarity. It was simply a more clearly written ad — and thus significantly improved the click-thru rate for Hunch.


ryan-healy About the Author: Ryan Healy is direct response copywriter and BoostCTR’s Director of Writer Development. Since 2002, he has worked with scores of clients, including Alex Mandossian, Terry Dean, and Pulte Homes. Visit his business growth blog to read more than 300 articles on business growth, advertising, and copywriting.




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5 Responses to “PPC Ad Text Win of the Week – 94% Improvement for Hunch”

  1. Hi Ryan,

    Thanks for sharing these insights! I would love to hear a little more about the statistics and math involved in how you set up the test and picked a winner. Similar to what you might see over at the Regardless, I look forward to your future posts.


  2. ryanhealy says:

    Hey Chad,

    Thanks for the comment!

    Google’s Adwords platform handles all the math. It compares the click-thru rate (CTR) for both ads, then calculates the difference. The new ad (the “challenger”) will result in a % change, either positive or negative.

    While I don’t know the specific CTR in this case, let’s assume the control ad had a 1.56% CTR and the new ad had a 3.03% CTR. If this were the case, then the new ad would be a 94% improvement over the control.

    So you can see that a 94% increase is a substantial improvement.

    A site I like to use when calculating percentage increase is this one:

    Hope this helps!


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