It’s no secret that Google allows you to highly customise your search ads to stand out from competitors. In fact, that’s one of the main reasons Google Ads is so popular when compared to other PPC networks such as Bing Ads and Facebook ads.
Long gone are the days of basic text ads with a short description and headline. Nowadays, PPC adverts can include a range of special ad extensions that help increase their user engagement and click-through rate.
However, with high customizability comes hundreds of settings and options to choose from. With so many options and ad extensions available, which ones should you choose for your ads to help you boost your ads performance?
To help you make that decision, we’re taking a look at the most useful Google Ads extensions available. From sitelinks extensions to seller rating and app extensions, all of these extensions add more engagement to your search adverts.
If you’ve never heard of Google ads extensions before then don’t worry, all that is about to change. This guide about ad extensions will get you up to date in no time, and fill you in on all the latest and top extensions you need to know about.
So what are ad extensions? And why are they so crucial for a successful Google ads campaign?
What Are Ad Extensions?
The chances are if you’ve seen any Google search ads recently, then you’ve probably seen ad extensions without even realising. To the average user, some of these extensions might seem like a normal ad, but to PPC marketers, it’s clear they aren’t included by default.
These Google Ads extensions allow advertisers to manually and automatically set different features on specific ads. By doing this, marketers can significantly increase their ad’s click-through rates, and other metrics, including quality score and ad rank.
According to official statistics from Google, adding a single ad extension to a campaign can increase the click-through rate between 10-25%.
With only so many ads showing per page, it’s crucial that PPC marketers do everything they can in their power to ensure their ad gets clicked. Considering the average person sees over 6,000 ads per day, that’s a lot of other ads marketers have to compete with!
Not only do these ad extensions increase the likelihood of users clicking, but they also allow a range of features on the ads that aren’t included by default.
But surely adding these ad extensions to your ads means you’ll have to pay Google more money? Not at all! These ad extensions are completely free, and anyone can add them to their ads, at no extra cost. Although adding every single ad extension might not make sense, and in some cases won’t be applicable, advertisers really have nothing to lose.
With over ten different ad extensions currently available, the only question remaining is: which ad extensions should you be using?
To help you make that decision, here are the top Google ad extensions that will boost your ads.
The Best Google Ads Extensions
- Location Extension
- Promotion Extension
- Sitelink Extension
- Lead Form Extension
- Callout Extension
- Call Extension
- Affiliate Location Extension
- App Extension
- Structured Snippets Extension
- Price Extension
- Seller Rating Extension
- Adds the businesses physical address to the ad
- Displays the nearest location to the user
- Clicking the address will bring up a map with the plotted location
- Can be used by any business with a physical address
One of the best Google Ad extensions to use on any advertising campaign is the location extension. Ideal for any business with a physical store or location that relies on foot traffic, this extension makes it incredibly easy for users to find a business.
As of July 2015, the location ad extension can also show the star ratings from a businesses Google My Business profile which will ad their star rating underneath the ad. More on this extension later.
By using the location extension, Google will automatically display the businesses address within the ad, which does several things for the user. First, it gives them a good idea of where the business is located without them having to click the ad and visit the website. This encourages any users who are close to click the ad for more information.
Second, by clicking the business address, it will automatically pull up the location on Google Maps, which helps users see exactly where a business is located.
In this example, the address is clearly visible and gives any user a good idea of how close the business is to their current location.
On mobile ads, the location extension also gives users the option to find the location using Google Maps directions. The directions button at the bottom of the ad will automatically send the location to Google Maps and plot a journey there without the user having to remember anything.
- Allows businesses to highlight their current sale promotions
- Clicking the promotion extension will take users directly to the promotion page
- Can be automatically scheduled to turn on or off at specific dates
Another must use ad extension for any business is the promotion extension, which is perfect for special holiday promotions and sales. Whether a business is running a special summer or Black Friday sale, this extensions lets users know below the primary ad copy.
Unfortunately, the promotion extension isn’t available for just any promotion. To find out which occasions and dates are available for the promotion extension, be sure to check out the list of available occasions on Google’s documentation.
As you can see from the example above, the extension adds an additional line to the advert marked with a price tag icon. The copy is also bolded to stand out and make users aware of the special promotion they are currently running.
Not only does this ad extension make ads more prominent and take up more screen space, but it also greatly increases the chances of users clicking on the ad. If the user does end up clicking the promotion extension, then they’ll be redirected to the webpage that has the discount; such as a special landing page.
- Significantly increases the click-through rate of search ads
- Takes users directly to important pages on the website
- Can show two to six sitelinks per ad
- A two-line description can be added to each sitelink
Increasing the click-through rate of an ad can be a tricky task for many marketers, especially when they’ve re-written the copy several times with no improvement.
A quick and easy way to significantly increase an ad’s click-through rate is to take advantage of the sitelink extension. In fact, some studies have shown that just adding the sitelink extension can increase an ad’s click-through rate by an average of 8%!
The sitelink extension allows advertisers to link to their most important pages directly on their ad for users to see. This means that Google can choose to display between two to six additional links at the bottom of the advert that will direct users to their most popular pages.
In this example of local electricians, they’ve added four sitelinks on their ad which will take the user to a different page depending on which link they click on. All of these links are related to the advert and what the user is searching for, whether its similar products or ways to contact the business.
Depending on the space available, each sitelink can also display a two-line description beneath each link, which takes up even more screen space for the ad. Not only does this increase the chances of a user clicking the ad, but having a description of every page is also very beneficial.
Lead Form Extension
- An alternative to the click to call extension
- The lead form is automatically filled in with the user’s details
- Ideal for lead generation
- Various different call to action buttons available
The newest ad extension available on Google Ads, the lead form extension replaces the old messaging extension that never really took off.
Similar to the call extension, the lead form extension encourages users to submit their contact information without ever having to make a phone call. Whether they’re somewhere they can’t speak, or they just don’t want to call anyone, the lead form extension makes it super quick to send an inquiry.
Similar to the promotions extension, the lead form extension is displayed at the bottom of the ad with a clipboard icon, making it rather eye-catching to the user. The call to action button can also be changed to different phrases such as book now and get quote.
Upon clicking the button, the user is taken to a new page with a form they can fill out. If the user is already signed into a Google account, then Google will autocomplete a lot of the fields to increase the chances of the user submitting it.
With only three fields in total to fill out (name, email and phone number), this also increases the chances of a successful conversion. The background image at the top can also be customised to personalise the lead form with a logo of the company.
Currently, lead forms are only available on mobile devices, but since the ad extension is still in beta, it could make it’s way to desktop ads.
- Great for highlighting the features and selling points of products
- Google will display two to six callouts depending on the space available
- Each callout has a 25 character limit
Another highly popular and useful ad extension is the callout extension.
Not to be confused with the call extension, the callout extension allows advertisers to “callout” specific features of their products and services in their ad copy. These might be features such as “free shipping” or “24/7 customer service”, anything that will grab the readers attention.
Each callout has a 25 character limit, and Google will display two to six callouts depending on the space and their algorithm. Expect most adverts to usually display four callouts.
Sometimes these callouts will blend in with the ad copy while adding an extra line and making the advert even more eye-catching. Other times, the callouts will be spaced out and separated by dots.
In this callout example, the callouts blend into the ad but add an entire extra line to the copy, which helps win more of that precious screen estate.
- Lead form extension alternative
- Encourages users to call the business
- Available on both desktop and mobile ads
- Significantly increases the chances of users calling
One of the most popular mobile ad extensions by far is the call extension. Particularly popular with service providers such as plumbers, locksmiths and electricians, this extension is most effective on mobile devices.
Although the extension is also displayed on desktops, the call to action and effectiveness isn’t as good; mainly because users can’t click to call on desktop. But don’t let that discourage you from adding it to your campaigns!
Since search ads with phone numbers in their copy are always rejected, the call extension is the only way you can get your phone number to show up on Google ads. This means regardless if you’re targeting mobile or desktop, it’s always a great extension to use.
This mobile example shows how effective the call extension is on mobile ads. All the user has to do is tap the icon or phone number to begin ringing the business. As simple as it looks and sounds, the call extension is an excellent addition to any Google ad.
Affiliate Location Extension
- Allows franchises and manufacturers to display their nearest chain location
- Can display up to four nearby locations per ad
- Clicking a location will bring up directions on Google Maps
- More useful than the standard location extension
The location extension might be an excellent way for local businesses to display their business address, but what if the company has multiple locations or stores?
Similar to the location extension, there is also another extension that allows franchises and manufacturers to list all of their stores. Whether its a car manufacturer listing the locations of their dealerships or a TV manufacturer listing the retailers that stock their product, the affiliate location extension is extremely powerful.
The affiliate location extension will display the nearest locations at the bottom of the ad depending on how many there are nearby. Just like the location ad, users can click the address for directions in Google Maps or even call the store using the phone icon.
In this example, Mercedes Benz is using the affiliate location extension to display all of their dealerships nearby. Depending on where the user is searching from will determine which and how many of their locations are shown.
- Encourages users to download mobile apps
- Displays a call to action button at the bottom of the ad
- Clicking the button will take users to the app or Google Play store
- An alternative to app promotion ads
Apps have become big business in recent years with entire companies (such as Uber and Instacart) being built around mobile apps.
Google currently offers app promotion ads to help promote apps, but for whatever reason, they decided to also offer advertisers yet another way to advertise their apps. The main difference between the two is that an app promotion ad is a standalone ad, whereas an app extension is a call to action on an existing ad.
The app extension is pretty straightforward. The extension is displayed below an existing ad and gives the user a quick and easy way to download the app by clicking a button.
Under an ad, the app will be displayed with a call to action button to download it. When a user clicks the button, depending on what mobile device they are on will determine which app store they are redirected to.
In the Just Eat example above, the app extension has been added to the ad and now creates a CTA at the bottom. This significantly increases the chances that a user will download the app compared to not using the extension.
Structured Snippets Extension
- Allows advertisers to highlight aspects of their products or services
- Up to two structured snippets can appear per ad
- Appears at the bottom of the ad
- Helps give users a better idea of what a business sells
Not to be confused with schema or structured data found on webpages, the structured snippets extension allows advertisers to highlight aspects of their products or services.
Shown at the bottom of the ad and separated with a colon, each ad can show up to two different structured snippets. This means that if you do use the structured snippets extension, be sure to add more than one per ad.
There is currently a whole range of different structured snippet headers that advertisers can use such as types, styles, models, brands and destinations, to name a few.
As you can see in the example ad above, John Lewis is using the types header to list all the different types of TV’s that they stock. Not only does this help increase the size of the ad, but it also gives uses a good idea of the different types of TV’s that they sell.
- Gives users pricing information on a product or service
- Can be displayed on both mobile and desktop ads
- Clicking the price will direct the user to that section of the website
- Google will display up to eight pricing cards
One of the biggest factors when it comes to making a purchasing decision is undoubtedly price. What better way to answer that important question by displaying the price within the ad.
The price extension does precisely that and is available on both mobile and desktop ads. Perfect for giving customers an idea of prices before they click on the ad, this ad extension encourages users to click while also saving advertisers money.
If a service or product is too expensive, then there’s a good chance a user won’t click the ad. Without the price extension, the user would have to click the ad to visit the page and check the price, which would cost the advertiser precious money.
Currently, the price extension can be used on a range of different products and services within the following categories: brands, events, services, product tiers and product categories.
The price extension on this ad gives users a great idea of how much a car rental would cost per day without having to click on the ad. The price extension also adds several price boxes at the bottom, which definitely helps the ad stand out.
Seller Rating Extension
- Automated extension
- Allows review ratings on various ad formats
- Significantly increase trust and click-through rates
- Requires external reviews from reputable sources
Although the seller rating extension is not a manual extension, we’d be crazy not to include it in this list!
A popular extension for all online retailers and service providers, having star ratings in your ads is an excellent way to improve trust with the user.
The reviews for the ads are pulled directly from third-party trusted sources such as Trustpilot and appear as a scale from 1 to 5. Located just below the ad, they are a real attention grabber mainly due to their yellow colour.
If you’re wondering why every business doesn’t have seller ratings on their ads, that’s because there is a slight catch. The catch is that in order for them to show, businesses need at least 100 unique reviews within the last 12 months from that specific country. The average rating must also be 3.5 stars or higher.
The seller rating extension might be a simple concept, but it’s extremely powerful and can significantly increase click-through rates and conversions. In this example, having a star rating of 4.7 from over 15,132 reviews is undoubtedly impressive and is sure to attract the attention of users.
Google Ads Extensions Summary
Hopefully, this article has given you a good overview of all the available ad extensions on Google and what they do. No matter what industry you’re in, you should be able to add several of these extensions to your ads.
Not only do these ad extensions increase the size of your ads and grab more of the user’s attention. But they also significantly help improve engagement and important metrics such as click-through rates and quality score.
To add an extension to your ads, all you have to do is click the extensions tab on the left-hand menu in the Google ads platform.
Most of the extensions are pretty self-explanatory but if you’re ever in doubt, always be sure to check the official Google documentation.