How to Create a Winner Description for Your AdWords Text Ads

larrykim
Larry Kim Founder & CTO, WordStream, Inc.

Posted on April 24th 2014

How to Create a Winner Description for Your AdWords Text Ads

Take a look at your text ads and tell me if they are designed to sell. Do you have a well-written ad description, a strong offer and a compelling call to action? Many PPC managers create their text ads to match the title with the query and bring people to the right landing page. And that’s a great starting point, but is it enough?

In many instances when we look at ads, we see the same generic or simple text written in the ad descriptions. Over the last few years we’ve changed the ad descriptions for hundreds of ads and we’ve seen a dramatic improvement in click-through rates, even when the ads were at the bottom of the search results.

When people search for a product or a service, they can see up to three ads at the top and eight ads at the side, together with the organic results and snippets such as maps, videos, or shopping results. The ad description could attract the visitor, but only if it’s well written. In fact, I use different strategies to capture people’s eyes and attention. No one will notice your ad if it says “We Provide Great Customer Support” or “Call Us for Help Now” because everybody writes the same boring descriptions and no one would ever say “don’t call me” or “we offer lousy service.”

Let’s search for a random query and see who wins and who loses in the ad description department. I searched for “shoes on sale”:

Seriously Sears? I would buy this ad description if the Macy’s ad said “Shop at Macy’s for No Savings on Shoes.” And what up with “Buy Online and Save Today!” anyway? This is the kind of “bold” statement that probably stopped working back in 1998.

With all respect to Zappos, I can tell that they use the same generic ad descriptions because comma separated “occasions” would never add any value or increase sales.

And here is the winner:

Shoe Dazzle created an ad with the price, discount, and dollar, percentage and plus signs. The ad serves its main purpose – to sell! I would add an exclamation point and stronger call to action, but still, great job!

How to Write a Killer Ad Description for a Text Ad: Dos & Don’ts

Remember in the old days when we paid Yellow Pages to make an ad bolder, bigger, stronger, juicier? Yellow Pages used to provide the data on how many more calls you would get if you made your ad stand out. Well, today you can enhance your ad on Google at no cost. There are many ways to make your description more noticeable, but first, here are some no-no’s!

  • Avoid generic ad descriptions i.e. “We Are the Top Service Provider”
  • Avoid annoying corporate jargon like “Streamline Your Business With Us”
  • Avoid unnecessary keyword insertions “Sale on Discount Furniture on Sale”
  • Avoid lazy descriptions like “In Stock Now at Example.com”

Now here are some tips for what you should do when writing AdWords text ad descriptions.

Use $ and % signs to show the offer and capture attention.

  • Save Now Up To 25% Off Shoes!
  • Get Instant $25 Discount on Shoes!

No discounts? People still like numbers.

  • 24/7 Support. We Deliver in 5 Days.
  • 1000s Designer Shoes as Low as $75.

Evergreen Sales:

  • Sale This Week - Get up to 75% Off!
  • Buy Today and Save $50 Instantly!

Google doesn’t allow the use of ALL CAPS but there are always ways around it! (Hint: Abbreviations)

  • Get Up To 40% Off MSRP Today!
  • Shoe Store, A+ BBB Accredited!
  • Up To 40% Off MSRP - Coupon: SAVE40

Use coupon codes!

  • To Save 20% Use the Coupon: SALE20
  • Exclusive 20% Coupon Offer: SAVE-20

Signs and special characters will attract attention:

  • Ranked 4*& 5* Stars, A+ on BBB!
  • Example™ - Sale on “Amazing” Styles!

Call to action, Go for It!

  • Get Up to 70% Off If You Buy Now!
  • 20%-80% Off. Get a Deal Today!

Show the Advantage:

  • Why Pay Full Price? Save Up To 70%
  • 30% Off + Price Match Guarantee!

Need a real example?

Now take a look at the search results for popular queries in your industry and try to find the most noticeable ad. I hope it’ll be your ad after reading this blog post!

This post originated on the WordStream Blog. WordStream provides keyword tools for pay-per click (PPC) and search engine optimization (SEO) aiding in everything from keyword discovery to keyword grouping and organization.

larrykim

Larry Kim

Founder & CTO, WordStream, Inc.

Founder & CTO of WordStream. Columnist for Inc. Magazine. Search Marketing Expert - PPC, AdWords, Content Marketing, Social Media, Entrepreneurship, Start-ups.

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