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The Power of Ad Extensions For Automotive Companies
If you want to dominate the rankings and stand out from your competitors in the crowded online automotive marketplace, Google Adwords Extensions can give you that edge.
In this blog we are going to discuss the basic premise of what ad extensions are, the benefits they bring and a further break down of each extension type you can use.
If you want to skip ahead and speak to an expert now – call us on 0141 343 8470
If you’d rather give Google Ad Extensions a shot yourself, then let’s get started.
What is an Ad Extension?
Ad Extensions are pretty much, exactly what they say on the tin. They are additional pieces of information about your business that extend your ad to make it more useful to your intended users.
With the automotive industry being complicated, never mind vast, ad extensions allow for a huge advantage to highlighting your USPs along with other integral information to better meet your customer’s needs.
Some things you can do with ad extensions:
- Promote the car brands/services you provide
- Link to additional and more user specific pages within your site e.g insurance, repairs
- Highlight USP’s, current promotions and offers
- Allow users to text or call you without even clicking through to your site
Benefits of Ad Extensions
By allowing you to show additional information on your ads, ad extensions can be an extremely powerful tool, with two main benefits to your campaign:
1. Increased Click Through Rates
Using ad extensions means that you will be providing your users with more of the information they are seeking than you can necessarily fit in titles and a description. Meaning it is much more likely for them to click your ad if they know their question will be answered.
Google reports that it is actually 30% more likely a user will click on your ad if you are using ad extensions. And what does higher CTR mean? Higher conversions of course!
Not only this but by using ad extensions you will be taking up more space on the search results page, drawing the eye of the user to all the relevant information that your ad provides and pushing your competitors further down the page.
2. Ad Rank factor
As some of you may know Google ranks your ad to determine what position you are going to get, the better the ad rank the higher the position you may achieve (it’s not just all about the cost per click). Well if you want to boost your ads quality score you are going to want to have as many relevant ad extensions as you can. Not only does this bump your ad up higher, it also decreases the price of your clicks as Google ranks your ad as high value to the user.
Want to know more on how Google ranks your ads read PPC 101 – What is PPC?
Which Ad Extensions Get Shown
As you might have assumed, not all of your ad extensions will get shown all of the time, if any at all. It depends on whether Google thinks the extension will improve your performance and if your ad’s position and ad rank is high enough for it to appear.
There is no additional cost for taking advantage of these ad extension options, so there is no harm in making use of as many as relevant.
Google even states:
To maximise the performance of your text ads, AdWords selects which extensions to show in response to each individual search on Google. For that reason, it’s a good idea to use all the extensions relevant to your business goals.
If Google tells us to use all of the extensions that are relevant, and it doesn’t cost you anything to do so, then what are you waiting for?
Useful Ad Extensions For The Automotive Industry
Here are the top ad extensions that you shouldn’t ignore if you want to boost your campaign and gain those valuable clicks.
Sitelink Extensions are additional links in your advert that will take your users directly to a specific page. This is great not only because they allow you to provide more links on your ad to show the scope of what your business covers, but if a user is further down the funnel, directing them to the exact page they are looking for can increase conversions as well as provide a smoother user experience.
Sadly your website is unlikely to be the only one competing for automotive keywords with the amount of vehicle websites out there fighting for clicks. Luckily, Callout Extensions are a perfect way of promoting your USP’s and getting more information into the ads, enticing the user to click.
Whether you offer free delivery of your vehicles across the UK or you want to show off your Number 1 Vehicle Dealer rating in your area, this is the ideal place to do so.
This is an obvious one but make sure that you have your phone number as a Call Extension in your ads.
You’re in an industry where people need assistance with their purchasing decision and many customers will prefer to talk to one of your team about your vehicle offerings rather than look through your entire site.
So make it easy for them to find your number straight away and be able to call directly from the Call Extension if on mobile.
If you have campaigns set up to target geographically then Location Extensions are a great way of driving potential customers into your location.
Similar to Call Extensions, in the automotive industry people often want to speak to someone directly or even test drive a vehicle. Setting up your Location Extensions so that potential customers can see how close you are can get you a competitive advantage over other ads and drive potential traffic through your door as well as to your website.
These are only relevant of course if you have an app that is useful to the user and is as important as the ad itself to justify you directing clicks away from your site.
If this is the case then App Extensions allow you to automatically drive customers to your app for mobile and tablet either via the App Store or Play Store when they click the extension.
While this may not be the most useful extension when targeting car sales, it can be extremely useful for those promoting car technology that have apps offering enhanced driving experiences.
Click to Text Message Extensions
With more and more users preferring mobile devices, Click To Text Message Extensions are fast catching up with Call Extensions as an additional CTA. If you are targeting a mobile audience then Click To Text Messages provide a quick and effective way for your customers to connect with you.
Message Extensions allow users to click an icon and then be taken to their message screen to text you directly. You can even add a pre populated message.
It’s so useful for automotive companies that Google uses one as its main example on the site:
Nick owns a car dealership, and is running a campaign that tells potential customers about a sale on SUVs. He wants message extensions to quickly communicate with his customers about his inventory. When people tap “Text”, a pre-populated message that Nick chooses shows up in their messaging app.
For some user groups, sending a text is more preferable to making a phone call, and having a pre-populated message is a great way to send more information and get the conversation started.
Structured Snippet Extensions
Adding Structured Snippets to your ads allows potential customers to immediately find out more information about your products and services without having to click on the ad. This is useful to deter unwanted clicks.
With many Structured Snippets to choose from, some of the best ones to use in the automotive industry are:
Useful when you are targeting generic terms and want to display the selection of car manufacturers you offer. For example, if a new car buyer knows they want to buy a BMW and you promote that you have BMW’s (among others) then you will attract this buyer because they know you definitely have what they are looking for.
When the brand itself is in the users search term e.g “BMW’s to lease”, adding models as structured snippets can be extremely useful to promote all the models you have available on your website for this brand.
Perhaps promoting your brands isn’t the best way forward for your particular service. For example, a car rental company may be better off promoting the types of vehicles they have available. Different trips have different requirements and promoting the fact you offer convertibles or people carriers may drive more traffic.
If you offer a range of automotive services, show them off using this option. For example a repair centre may want to list out the different services they offer such as MOT testing or tyre fitting using this option.
All in all, it is about adding the extra relevant information and additions to your ads to let the user know what you have to offer to increase CTR and decrease wasted clicks.
If you offer particularly competitive pricing, Price Extensions can be extremely useful to drive the right traffic and reduce the amount of wasted clicks.
One area of concern with Price Extensions is that it is important that your site prices match the Price Extensions in your ads, so remember to update in all places that a price is given.
A great way of driving traffic during special sales and offers is utilising the Promotion Extension. By setting the title of the offer and the date range, your ads can stand out from the rest and encourage potential customers to act quickly in the given time frame.
Extensions for Call Only Ads
Ad extensions are not just for text ads. Call Only Ads can also take full advantage and when they do, are just as likely to see increased CTR’s as well.
However, not all ad extensions are available, or relevant for Call Only Ads. You can however setup:
Users are more likely to call when they know where they are calling. For larger automotive brands this is particularly useful when you have locations across the UK. A user in Edinburgh for example, would far prefer to be able to see the location they are calling and know that they are not being redirected to your head office in Birmingham.
Callout Extensions work in the same way as they would in a text ad. They are there to highlight your USP’s and entice users, in this circumstance, to call.
Structured Snippet Extensions
Again, Structured Snippets work in the same way as text ads. The more information you offer the more likely you are to encourage a user to call, so make sure you target exactly what it is you think your user is searching for.
A handy feature of Call Only Ads is that if you already have any of these extensions set up for your text ad, they will be eligible to automatically display in your Call Only Ad too.
Want to talk paid search?
The world of paid search can be pretty daunting and it can take some time before you really understand your clicks from your conversions and sitelink extensions to your callout extensions.
To keep you on the right track, we’re happy to talk through your long-term objectives and make some recommendations about how to get there. Give us a call on 0141 343 8470 or simply drop us a line.
About The Author
Ross manages our digital output across the design, development and marketing teams. Experienced in a number of project management methodologies, Ross brings supportive and adaptive structure to everything we do.
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