In 2017, the average click-through rate (CTR) across AdWords is between 2% and 3%. Are you having trouble getting your ads to reach 2% CTR? You’re in luck, because today, I’m going to break down a few ways to increase click-through rate on your paid ads. When combined, these methods will help drive more users to your website and, as a result, generate demand for your business. Let’s jump right into it!

Place Keyword In Ad Copy

This is probably one of the biggest drivers of click-through rate, once implemented on an account-wide level. If the search query used appears in the first headline of your ad, the user is far more likely to click on it than if it did not appear. Including the keyword in your ad copy will increase your ad relevance, increasing your quality score and lowering your overall cost-per-click. Bonus points if you can manage to fit the keyword naturally into the display-path URLs as well.

A follow up question I often get asked is this: “How can I make sure to include the keyword in every ad when I have multiple keywords in each ad group?”. The answer is Single Keyword Ad Groups. Single Keyword Ad Groups or SKAGs for short, are something that every advertiser should be using. Each ad group should be broken out by one keyword with exact, phrase and broad match modified match types. Don’t forget tiered bidding! By using this strategy, each ad will be highly relevant to the users search query which will help increase click-through rate and decrease your cost per click.

Use Title Case

This is a small change that can have a significant impact on ad performance. Rather than typing your ads in traditional sentence format, capitalize the first letter of each word. Using title case in your ad copy has been shown to outperform ads written in sentence case format. This includes headlines one and two, the description line and the path URL’s. Writing ad copy with title case format will help your ads stand out on the SERP.

Utilize Ad Extensions

Ad extensions are a great tool that allow you to advertise additional pieces of information about your business. They allow you to take up more real estate on the SERP and can help promote your business in other ways not available with regular expanded text ads. You can add extensions at the account, campaign or ad group level depending on your needs.

The Most Commonly Used Ad Extensions

  • Sitelink extensions allow you to show up to four additional links and a short description that direct users to other pages on your website. You can add more than four links and AdWords will rotate automatically. Another benefit of sitelink extensions is that they will make your ad longer, thus taking up more room on the SERP and potentially pushing your competition below the fold.
  • Callout extensions give you additional room to highlight specials, promotions or short eye-catching descriptions. Each callout can be up to 25 characters in length. Up to six callouts can appear underneath each ad. These extensions are a perfect way to highlight additional features that may influence the buyers’ decision.
  • Call extensions offer an easy way for customers to contact you without having to click on your ad and navigate through your website, though you do pay-per-click on the call button or phone number, just as if the user landed on your website. For desktop ads, the phone number is displayed within the ad, most often right after the display URL. Mobile ads will prompt a user to call by displaying a call button near the ad. Once clicked, the dialer will pop up and auto populate with the phone number of your business.
  • Location extensions make it easy for potential customers to find directions to your store front. These extensions can easily be created if you have your Google My Business page linked with an AdWords account. Location extensions allow you to display your address or multiple if you have more than one location. Searchers can click on the address and very quickly find directions from their current location.
  • Price extensions are the perfect way for eCommerce businesses to drive more sales by highlighting any specials they are currently offering. You not only have the ability to add multiple items, descriptions and prices, but you are also able to direct searchers to specific product landing pages directly from the ad. This makes it easier for potential customers to find the product they may be looking for, rather than searching your site and leaving without ever making a purchase.

In total, there are 11 ad extensions that you can use to increase the click-through rate on your ads. New promotion extensions are currently in beta and can be accessed by using the new AdWords UI. Make sure you are taking advantage of these extensions and increasing the overall performance of your ads. Since there are quite a few extensions, try to use the most common ones listed above.

Create A Call To Action

Having a clear, concise and compelling call to action will not only will benefit your landing page but your ads as well. Don’t bury your CTA within the description line; make sure it’s prominently displayed in the second headline. Searchers love to feel like they are getting a deal, so keep that in mind when crafting your next CTA. A headline with the copy “Shop Now And Receive 10% Off”, or “Free Shipping On All Orders” will perform much better than simply “Shop Now” or “Learn More.”

increase click-through rate with a call to action

A/B Test Your Advertisements

Continuous testing is the key to steadily improving your ad performance, and one of the best ways to increase click-through rate. Rather than using a large series of ads, you should always be testing two slightly different versions of the same ad. Keep the best performing ad and replacing the under-performing ad. Testing more than two versions of the same ad at a time creates too long a timeline actionable decisions. Make sure you are only testing one variable at a time (headline two, description, etc). Don’t forget to make sure that your data is statistically significant.

Are you using these best practices to increase click-through rate?

If you’re having trouble with your click-through rates, following the steps above is a great place to start making sure your PPC accounts are optimized for maximum ROI. Make sure the keyword always appears in the first headline and use single keyword ad groups to your advantage. Keep ad copy consistent and use title case throughout your account to improve performance. Be sure to use all relevant ad extensions to increase your SERP real estate. Craft a clear, concise and compelling call to action. This will incentivize searchers to click on your ad. Finally, be sure you are always testing to increase click-through rate of your ads.

And if you’re still having trouble with your CTR after implementing these best practices, schedule a consultation! We’re here to help.

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