Save your PPC ad from humiliation: 5 tips for writing winning ad descriptions

By Philip | Ad copy

Jun 06

If you’re new to Google AdWords, you’ll be forgiven for assuming that once you’ve set up your PPC campaign the clicks and conversions will come rolling in. If you consider yourself well-versed in the matter, you’ll know that a crummy click-through-rate (CTR) is a common sign that your AdWords ad copy is less than awesome.

Let’s backtrack…this is your ad description

ad description AdWords

 

 

 

Your business may be a remarkable one, but it’s appearance that matters. The look of your ad is the first step in the conversion process. Space is limited – two lines, up to 35 characters per line – so the pressure is ON to make a positive first impression that charms your prospect, ups your CTR and increases your overall Quality Score.

If your AdWords descriptions aren’t worth a second glance, consider these five tips to maximise your CTR and make those prospects swoon!

1) Define your positioning

Whether it’s a PPC campaign or a TV commercial, creating a unique selling point (USP) is a fundamental part of any successful marketing campaign. It’s an ad-eat-ad world in the Googlesphere and you want to stand out. Generic doesn’t get clicks.

If you’re a family law practitioner you need to be able to point out – in two little lines – what makes your service better than every other firm appearing on the search engine results page (SERP).

A successful ad differentiates itself from competition. Even direct competition.

Take this law firm for example. Their USP is that they have a 96% success rate.

Unique Selling Point

2) Complement the headline

The relationship between headline and description should be a complementary one. The headline is your burly action hero and the description is the smarter sidekick who explains the plot.

Any good headline aims to catch the eye of the user, so use your description as an opportunity to add value and context to the headline.

Along with a strong USP, good ad copy should include the following:

  • How this service will benefit the customer
  • Features that define the service 
  • A clear call to action

3) Don’t forget your primary keywords!

Your headline should include your primary keywords and so should your AdWords description text. By default, Google automatically bolds your searched keywords in the ad copy, making your ad appear more relevant to the searcher.

Then there’s dynamic keyword insertion (DKI) – a feature offered by Google AdWords which allows you to customise your keywords according to a searcher’s query. As if it were magic, DKI will insert a keyword from your Ad Group into your ad copy if someone is searching for that term.

4) Include your call-to-action

While you may be rolling your eyes or smirking, “thanks, Captain Obvious”, many advertisers forget to include a call-to-action in their ad description. A user is looking for a solution, so when your ad pops up amongst many similar ads you want the description text to assure them that your service is essentially ‘the cough medicine to their cold’.

Include the features, sell the benefits and have a clear call-to-action. It will work in your favour.

Take this ad for example:

AdWords call to action

5) Create harmony between ad descriptions and landing page

Generally your landing page is written before you construct your ad copy. It is incredibly important that you remember the following:

1) A user is visiting your landing page because of what you’ve advertised in your ad description. Therefore, if you promise the user an insurance quote you had better direct them to a page where they can get said insurance quote. Don’t mess them around. This defeats the point of having good ad copy because chances are the visitor is going to feel tricked – wave goodbye to your conversion!

2)  It’s equally important to match the tone of your ad copy with the overall tone of your landing page. Remember your unique selling point – your customer, your vibe – and keep it consistent throughout.

3) Match your keywords! Your primary keywords should appear in both your ad and landing page copy.

Conclusion

A smart, keyword-rich headline will get your ad noticed, but essentially it’s the description copy that sells it. Yes, it’s hard to peddle the benefits of your product or service in two lines, but if you adhere to these ad copy best practices, you can crush your less-enlightened competition and steal those clicks right out from under their terrible headlines. Be unique, be relevant, but whatever you do – don’t forget to sell!

Featured Image Courtesy of Tiffany Bailey, WikiCommons, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. 

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