Extending AdWords with Ad Extensions

December 1, 2010 | Written by Dusty Dean

The reach, relevancy and ROI of search engine marketing, specifically Google AdWords, is unmatched today in Web marketing.

AdWords is still the primary powerhouse and Google doesn’t rest on their laurels. Google continues to rapidly innovate and provide advanced targeting tools that allow businesses to target customers at crucial points in the buying process.

The best place to see how Google is innovating search marketing and staying ahead of current trends is to look at their AdWords extensions.

AdWords extensions are extra features you can enable for your search engine marketing campaigns. These extensions help you more precisely target your customers and help give you more interactive search engine ads.

The following list describes the latest Google AdWords extensions and lists the unique benefits of each one.

Location Extensions

Location extensions are an excellent targeting tool for local businesses who want to advertise to people searching near their business.

AdWords determines the location of the searcher, determines if it is near your business, if so, then your normal text ad will appear with your business’s address and phone number appended to the end.

And if you have multiple locations, you can include them both in your ad. The business address closest to the searcher will appear in their search results.

Location extensions will also appear on Google Maps for mobile phones.

Benefits of Location Extensions:

  • Target customers at a crucial point in the sales funnel when they’re nearest your business
  • Displaying familiar addresses & phone numbers increases trust factors for the searcher
  • Appear prominently on Google Maps as users navigate near your business

Extension Status: Fully Released

Phone Extensions

Phone extensions are also known as click-to-call ads. These ads only appear on mobile phones with full Internet browsers (e.g. iPhone & Android).

A click-to-call ad will display your company’s phone number and when the searcher taps the ad it will start a phone call with your company.

An added feature to click-to-call ads is the ability to use AdWords’ latest innovation called Call Metrics.

Call Metrics creates unique phone numbers for your ads and tracks valuable data about the number and duration of calls received from your ad.

Benefits of Phone Extensions:

  • Create higher value conversions with calls rather than clicks
  • Connect directly with a customer and quickly advance the sales process
  • Measure vital performance data using the Call Metrics feature

Extension Status: Fully Released

Ad Sitelinks

Ad sitelinks allow you to associate four unique landing pages to your search based ads. These links will appear below your text ad and are intended to direct searchers to different locations on your website.

Ad sitelinks are great for seasonal promotions and help you expose your searcher to a diverse group of content on your website. Google says that sitelinks appended to text ads increase clickthrough rates on average by more than 30%.

Benefits of Ad Sitelinks:

  • Increase ad relevancy by offering multiple landing page options in a single ad
  • Use Ad sitelinks to drive traffic to profitable seasonal promotions
  • Increased clickthrough rates CTRs and higher ROI

Extension Status: Fully Released

Product Extensions

Product extensions allow merchants to highlight their products directly in Google search ads. These extensions are only available to merchants who have a Google Merchant Center account.

These extensions allow you to enrich your text-based ads with more detailed information about your products, including images, titles, and prices of your products in a plusbox under your ad.

Benefits of Product Extensions:

  • Display more detailed descriptions and images of your products to searchers
  • Leverage your product catalog from Google Merchant Center in your ads
  • Advance the sales process by matching your most relevant products to the search query

Extension Status: Limited Release 1

Seller Rating Extensions

Seller ratings help searchers choose highly rated merchants by displaying review information below the search based ads. These star ratings are collected by Google from websites all around the Web.

The seller rating extensions display the star reviews and the number of reviews below the ad. Google attaches your merchant star rating from the Google Merchant Center to the ad.

These seller rating extensions will automatically be added to your ads if you have over 30 reviews and an average star rating of 4+ stars. Google doesn’t charge you for clicks on the review link; you’re only charged for clicks on the headline.

Benefits of Seller Rating Extensions:

  • Send trust and credibility signals to searchers by leveraging your ratings
  • Utilize your high ratings and excellent reviews to attract more customers
  • Receive more qualified leads from searchers who have read your reviews

Extension Status: Limited Release

Video Extensions

Video extensions are a great example of how Google is experimenting with adding rich interactive content to their traditional text-based search ads.

Searchers will see your text-based ad and below it a plus box will be displayed. Once the searcher clicks the plus box a video will appear. You’re only charged when the video is played for 10 seconds or more.

Once the video finishes playing, the searcher can either click the URL link in your ad or the video itself to go to your site at no extra charge to you.

Benefits of Video Extensions:

  • Add unique rich interactive content to search ads
  • Promote time-sensitive branding campaigns such as movie trailers
  • Combine branding advertising with the relevancy of search based results

Extension Status: Limited Beta 2


  1. Limited Release: These features have finished beta testing and are gradually being released to all advertisers. After roll-out is complete they will graduate to “Fully Released” status. ↩
  2. Limited Beta: In limited betas we restrict testing to a small number of participants, and tests can stop at any time. Because beta features are still in development, you may encounter technical issues or other hiccups as you use these features. ↩
December 1, 2010 | Written by Dusty Dean

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