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Making Full Use Of Google AdWords Ad Extensions

Making Full Use Of Google AdWords Ad Extensions

Google AdWords ad extensions are a great way to add information to your paid ads without incurring massive extra costs. Using ad extensions allows you to increase the attractiveness of your ads, generally making them stand out more in search results, which ultimately leads to more clicks on your ads.

However, knowing that ad extensions are beneficial to your business  and deciding to use them is only the start. By understanding exactly what you can do to drive traffic through ad extensions means you can constantly improve on their performance. In this article we run through the various aspects that must be considered in making full use of the Google AdWords ad extensions. This will include everything from ensuring you are using the right ones, measuring their success and tweaking them to make them work even better.

Enable all extensions 

When it comes to implementing Google AdWords extensions there are a lot to choose from. With options for everything from location extensions to app extensions, picking which ones to use can be a tricky challenge. Naturally as with everything in business, you always want to use the best possible option for bringing benefits to your business.

However, as ad extensions are a free option for your Google ads, it gives you a good opportunity to test their performance without any direct negative impact to your business.  When you start using ad extensions you should put in place every extension that makes applicable sense to your business. For example, if your business would benefit from location information, app information and a phone number being included in your ad then use them all. You can test the performance of each extension as your campaign progresses and make a judgement on the best extension based on that. 

Ensure quality 

Google are on a constant hunt to improve the quality of their search results for those that use the platform. They do this through using a range of data that decides quality of ads and other search results based on their content. Your ad extensions will not always be shown, even if your ad does appear. By boosting quality you will improve the likelihood of your ad extensions are shown in search results. 

Quality across all ads 

One step you need to take to increase the chances that your ad extension gets shown is ensuring that the quality of the ad itself is high enough. By doing this you will increase your ad ranking. In fact, in their guidance Google point out that extensions are only included on your ad when your ad’s position and Ad Rank is high enough for extensions to appear.

Improving your ad can be done in a number ways including by improving the relevance of your ad to the keyword, the relevance of your ad to the landing page, the historical performance of your account and the click through rate of your ad. 

Quality across all extensions 

Equal to the importance of improving the quality of the ad itself is improving the quality of the extension you are using. The extensions you select to use are approved or disapproved by Google, just like the ads and keywords you decide to use. When an extension has been disapproved it will not show and will need to be edited and re-submitted for re-review.

Many of the ad extensions available have very specific requirements that must be met in order to appear. These are usually required for manual extensions such as callouts, structured snippets and locations, but also needed for automatic extensions including seller rating and dynamic sitelink extensions. Meeting these requirements very specifically will not only up your chances of it getting your extension approved, but will also boost the predicted performance of that extension. This in turn will lead to your extension appearing more often in search results. 

Extension updates 

The AdWords extensions that you decide to use are only as useful as the information they hold. To make full use of them you need to make sure that you schedule in updates to information that may become out of date or irrelevant. In some cases the information will be pulled automatically and updated via your website such as a call extension. However, in other cases, for example when you use call outs to promote an offer such as ‘Free Delivery’ you need to ensure that you either accurately automate scheduling of that callout or do it manually.

Extensions that do not link through to true information run the risk of being noted as irrelevant and are likely to be penalised. 

Measure success and improve 

We mentioned earlier in this guide that once you have set all the relevant extensions for your ads, you will be able to measure many of the results you are receiving for them and tweak them accordingly. You can see this data by visiting your AdWords account where information is available on how many clicks and impressions your ad extension have gathered. You will also be able to see a number of other statistics including their related ad costs, all of which can be compared and contrasted to decide on future actions.


To really make the most out of your ads you should use this information to judge what is and what isn’t working for you. Take into consideration which ads are getting the most clicks and impressions. You should also compare performance metrics to the ad costs in order to judge which is delivering the best value for money. However, if any of your ad extensions are performing poorly you shouldn’t simply dismiss it, but should seek to work out why.

In cases where the extension is not variable such as with call extensions, performance will be obvious through the analytics available. However in cases where the extension is personalised such as with callout extensions, poor performance should be taken with a pinch of salt and trying different copy could remedy issues.

Go mobile

According to Google data, apparently over 60% of searches are now undertaken on mobile devices. This is an important fact to remember when trying to get the make the most out of your ad extensions. Using extensions that are particularly powerful on mobile can go a long way to improving the performance of your ad and benefiting your business.


One extension that works really well on mobile for local businesses is the location extension. By linking this through to the Google Maps app, those that click on this extension will be shown exactly where you are on the map, giving them exact directions on how to find you. This is particularly powerful when combined with local and mobile specific targeting. The call extension is also very mobile-friendly, allowing searches to click and call immediately.

This may seem simple, but these features make it much easier for customers to find your business and ultimately make it easier for them buy from you. This should be the ultimate goal of your AdWords campaigns. 

Link pain points with extensions 

With all the technical information available on how to get your ad extensions performing better, it is rare to see any practical advice that goes beyond the digital space. However, smart businesses will link their ad extensions to known pain points that their customers are feeling. Doing this is a good way to limit any resistance that a buyer might have on your brand, services or product before they even get to your site.

Practically this can be done by examining any feedback or data you have gathered online or offline on your business. For example, if you are a brand new business selling a relatively expensive product, the trust that customers have in your brand may be a major issue. This can be directly remedied via the use of seller rating extensions that can immediately put potential customers at ease. Equally, if customers often have questions that can be answered quickly then a call extension or sitelink extensions can be used to answer questions that are frequently asked quickly and efficiently.

In this article we have walked through everything you need to know about making full use of the Google AdWords ad extensions. This has included technical guidance on how the ad and the extension may be improved in order to show more regularly. We have also offered advice on how you can measure the performance of the extensions and can make tweaks to help them perform better.

Finally we have run through some more practical guidance on how you may use ad extension to answer customer pain points and make the sales process smoother before they even click onto your website. Clearly ad extensions are a great way to boost click throughs from your ad. They can even be a good way to lower your CPC, which can be achieved if you follow our advice and improve their relevance and quality.

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Peter Johnson
Peter is a Google AdWords specialist, with associated skills in Bing Ads, Twitter Ads and Facebook Advertising.