A seemingly basic element in the success of a PPC campaign is the quality of the ads that are shown to potential customers.
Writing PPC ad copy is simple but writing good PPC ad copy takes creativity and a good campaign structure.
There isn’t a one size fits all for writing good PPC ad copy but there are some good ideas that you should be aware of. The actual tactics that you use will depend on your particular business and niche. Here are 17 ideas for writing amazing PPC ad copy.
Why is writing good PPC ad copy important?
Before jumping into the tips to writing amazing PPC ad copy, we need to ask what benefits can be gained by focusing on your ad copy. Here are three reasons from the many:
Improve your click-through rate (CTR)
writing Pay Per Click ad copy that resonates well with your customers will likely increase the chances of them clicking on your ads. This means you have a better chance of winning the click than your competitors. Driving relevant traffic to your site is part of the battle when it comes to using PPC advertising to get leads and sales from your website.
Improve Quality Scores
Aside from increasing the traffic to your site, increasing your CTR will also improve your Quality Scores and consequently bring down your click prices. Google assigns each of your keywords a Quality Score which is a score from one to ten with one being the lowest and ten being the highest. The higher the Quality Score, the lower your click prices will be. Google is a little vague on exactly what they look at when determining the Quality Score of your keywords but we do know that the CTR is a major factor. Therefore by improving your CTR via good ad copy testing, you should see a reduction in click prices.
Reveal your brand image
It’s not just about improving your CTR. We don’t want to be giving the wrong impression to customers and driving the wrong kind of traffic to our website. This is because with PPC, we pay for each click, which means driving irrelevant traffic to our site is going to end up unnecessarily burning through our budget. Your PPC ad copy is your first opportunity to tell your customers what you’re all about, create your brand image and also show what makes you special. Showing your brand image will also help to deter the people who wouldn’t have been interested in your business.
17 tips to writing good ad copy
1 – Look at your competitor’s ad copy
Before writing your own ad copy, search for some of your keywords and identify what your PPC customers are writing about. This is important because regardless of who you consider your actual competitors, the competitors currently in your PPC space are the ones that your ads are going to competing against.
Once you’re aware of what your competitors are doing, you can start to think about the kind of messages that are not being covered by your competitors or how your ad can outdo them.
If your competitors are talking about how many years of experience they have and you have more experience than them, then you can mention this in your ad. Or if you’re a relatively new company and you know that you can’t compete on the years of experience you have, then you know to focus on something else.
2 – Know the ad structure and character limits
Be aware of the structure of your ads so you can visualise how an ad will look when it gets displayed on Google. It’s also important to be aware of the maximum character limits for each section so you know what kind of messaging you can fit in.
3 – Talk to your audience
Address your audience by talking to them. This means adding in ‘you’ or ‘your’ into the ad copy. Addressing your audience can create a more personable feel.
4 – Ask a question
Asking a question can grab the users attention and make wonder what their answer to your question would be. I’ve found that this tactic performs quite well in the right circumstances and when the right question is asked.
The basic idea is to ask if your user has a problem that your business can solve. For example if you offer waste management in leeds and you know that the a big concern for people looking for waste management is that the company should be local to them. Then, test adding in ‘Looking for Waste Management in Leeds?’.
5 – Add figures and statistics
Numbers and percentages are a good way to get a message across without using a lot of characters. They instantly show how your business is better than the competition.
- 95% success rate
- Recommended by 3 out of 4 customers
- Improve Efficiency by 85%
- Average £125 saving
7 – Use emotional triggers
The other side to using facts and figures is to use emotional triggers in order to make the ad more exciting. Boring ads generally don’t win the click.
8 – Countdown timers
Adding a countdown timer does a very good job to create urgency. It makes the customer feel as though they will miss out on a good deal if they don’t click your ad and complete the action that you want them to complete. For example, if you’re running a sale, you could add ‘50% Off Sale Ends in 2 days’ into your ad copy.
A simple way to add a countdown timer is to add a curly bracket when writing your ad copy in Google Ads. This will open up a menu with three options. Select ‘Countdown’ and in the menu that appears, add in the date and time when your countdown would end.
To keep the customer journey consistent, it is important that the countdown messaging present on your PPC ad copy is also present on your landing page. For example, if your ad copy mentions that you’re running a sale that ill end in two hours, then your landing page should also mention that the sale will end in two hours. Otherwise, you may improve your click-through rate with your countdown timer but when your customer lands on your website, they may not feel the same sense of urgency that made them click your ad if they don’t see the countdown message on the landing page. Increasing your click-through rate in this way will likely lead to more clicks to your site but a poorer conversion rate which is going to end up unnecessarily burning through your budget.
9 – Put your strongest messaging in your the headlines
A lot of people tend to skim read PPC ads. They’ll start off with the headline and if the headline peaks their interest, they may read the description lines. Regardless of whether they read the description line or not, if your headlines don;t attract the customer’s attention, then they are likely to move onto the next ad. This means that your best and most catchy messaging needs to be in the headlines.
10 – Structure your adgroups into relevant themes
Before setting up your account structure, you need to have a think about the keyword themes that you’re going to include in each ad group and if you’d like to speak differently to someone searching for one keyword compared to a another keyword. For example, if you’re targeting both upper funnel and lower funnel keywords, then it would make sense to split these keywords out into their own ad groups. This will allow you use more informational messaging on your upper funnel keywords and more sales based messaging on your lower funnel keywords.
11 – Keep the message consistent from PPC ad to landing page
Writing good PPC ad copy is one thing, but ensuring that the messaging is consistent from the PPC ad click to the landing page will help to persuade your customer to complete your conversion action. If you get an ad click from an PPC ad that talks about saving the customer an average of £80 a month, then there is a good chance that your customer was impressed by this. It’s therefore a good idea to ensure that this messaging is present on your landing page. Similarly, if your ad mentions black jumpers, then it’s a good idea to land your customer on your black jumpers page and not a general jumpers page. Keeping the messaging consistent should lead to higher conversion rates and more conversions.
You can achieve this by looking at the messaging on your landing page when creating your PPC ads. Also, if you think of a good message to test that isn’t present on your landing page, then consider adding in the message on your landing page – as long as you’re not lying, of course.
12 – Use all available Ad Extensions
Ad extensions are additional messaging that can appear underneath ads. There are a number of ad extensions that can be added and one of the benefits of adding ad extensions is that they make your ads take up more space. By taking up more space, you make your PPC ad stand out more which increases the chances of your customer noticing your ad. Adding Ad Extensions can also highlight other pages on your website and add give more information such highlighting USPs and giving a contact phone number to name a few examples.
13 – Think about your Quality Score
While improving your Quality Score shouldn’t be the only factor that you focus on when creating your ad copy, having good quality scores will help to bring down your click prices. This will mean that you’re able to buy more clicks for your budget.
Improving Quality Scores is a broad subject but when creating PPC ad coy, there are some basic starting points to think about. First of all, your Quality Score is broken down into three metrics: Expected click-through rate, Ad Text Relevance and Landing Page Experience. So to improve your Quality Scores, you need to focus on these three areas. Here are some starting points on improving each element of your Quality Score.
14 – Add awards and achievements
Shout about yourself and your achievements by talking about them in your PPC ads. Even if the PPC ad click doesn’t immediately result in a conversion, you’re awards and achievements improve your brand image in the eyes of your customers. This can lead to more business later on.
15 – Talk about USPs
Talk about your unique selling points (USPs). As a business owner, you’ll have an idea on what makes your business stand out from your competition. Highlight these USPs on your ad copy to show your customers what makes you special.
Do you offer free delivery where the competitors don’t? Are your boots 100% leather? Is your clothing British made? Do you have a lot of experience in your field than your competitors?
16 – Make your business appear local
If you have a store, you can use a feed to tailor your ad copy to people by their location. You can upload a feed that will allow you to show a different ad to people based on their location. So for example, if you have a waste management company in Leeds and someone in Leeds searches for one of your keywords, your ad copy would mention that your store is in Leeds. If someone from Wakefield searches from one of your keywords, your ad could include ‘half an hour drive from Wakefield’ .
Creating ads tailored to the user’s location can help to really personalise your ad and I’ve also seen good conversion rates by using this strategy. This is because the customer feels that your business is close to them which has already removed one of the objections that they may have had.
17 – Tell your customers ‘what they can get’ by clicking
Adding call to actions like ‘browse now’, ‘call now’ or ‘shop now’ may have been OK to use five to ten years ago, but in 2019, these call to actions are cliché and have been used to death. Instead, have a think about why your customer would want to click your ad and what they would get. Instead of ‘shop now’, how about ‘shop the latest trends’ or instead of ‘call now’, how about speak to a specialist’?
There isn’t a one size fits all for writing amazing ad copy. It really depends on your particular business, what you have to shout about and what your customers care about.
The best way to identify good adcopy that is right for your business is by putting in thought into your ad copy, creating a PPC account structure that let’s you tailor your ads to the keyword theme and then split testing multiple ad messages. Split testing ad copy will show what ad copy performs the best for your business. Once you have enough data, you can start to pause the poorer performing messages so tat more traffic can go to the better performing messages.