Maximizing Adwords Extensions – Part 1

Ad extensions in Adwords are one of the often missed features that can add a critical boost to your Adwords campaigns. Google gives us powerful tools to bring in more clicks and conversions, but ad extensions seem to be seldom used by lawyers in their campaigns. In this post I’ll walk you through how ad extensions work, how to set them up, and how to read the data Google provides us with.

Ad extensions are fairly straightforward. In a regular Adwords ad you have a headline, 2 lines of ad text, and a display URL. With extensions, you get a chance to feature a bit more info about your business. This can be either the location of your business (location extensions), your phone number (call extensions) or simply more text and links to your site (sitelink extensions).
Some of these extensions are more important in the legal world than others. Google maintains a relatively large focus on eCommerce, so some of their features aren’t really designed to work well for lawyers.
– App Extensions –
If driving app installs is a goal, app extensions can be very useful. They’ll place your app front and center on your ads, and can help boost app installs significantly.
These extensions don’t have to be paired with an ad, though. Try pairing them with your standard ad text — you’ll add a second way to engage with your firm, and you’ll take up more real estate on the page.
– Call Extensions – 
Last year mobile search overtook desktop with Google, and your traffic probably shifted in this direction as well. Call extensions give mobile users an easy way to get in touch with you right on the SERP.
Getting your phone number on the page in as many places as possible is key in PPC — having call extensions set up is one of the first things on my list for any new Adwords account.
– Location Extensions – 
In my opinion, location extensions are the second most powerful type of extensions Google offers. This is because they take up a significant amount of space on the SERP.
Not only do location extensions play a big role in on page space, but they’re important in offline decision making factors. As much as we would like to think that the most qualified lawyer would get the case, being local to a client is very key.
– Review Extensions – 
Review extensions are a great way to showcase 3rd party reviews and get an immediate “hook” on a searcher. Social proof is one of the best ways to differentiate yourself online, and review extensions do a great job of putting those comments front and center. The only caveat is the privacy of reviewers. Make sure you get approval from clients before posting their reviews publicly.
– Sitelink Extensions – 
Sitelink extensions are my favorite type of extensions. They take up a ton of space on the page, and give you a better chance to find some “common ground” with a searcher.
In this example, someone searching for “Nike Store” might be looking for the Nike store itself (which is covered by the headline). Someone making this search probably has a higher purchase intent (they searched for the store itself), but they might be interested specifically in Jordan’s, and this sitelink could jump off the page for that searcher.
Sitelink extensions not only allow you to add 4 more links to your ad, but they give you a space for a description — this ad takes up twice as much space on the page as a standard ad. It’s not hard to see how effective sitelink extensions can be at bringing in more clicks.
– Callout Extensions – 
Callout extensions allow you to cover a couple of features of your product. For law firms, that’s a difficult thing to do — you’ve probably got hundreds of “features” you could add here.
Instead, you can try adding names of the different types of cases your firm covers (e.g. Child support – Child Custody – Grandparents Visitation). While these aren’t clickable links like the sitelink extensions, their attractiveness is similar. Callout extensions are another easy way to catch the attention of a user.
– Consumer Ratings –
Google has started offering some more ways to show off review stats about business, and consumer surveys are an integration of Google Consumer Surveys. Unfortunately, this extension is only available to some business that Google has run surveys for. If Google has done surveys on your business, they’ll automatically show with your ads.
– Previous Visits –
Previous visits are another type of automated extension that might show on your ads. If someone is signed in to Google, these extensions will show when the user last visited your site from the Google search page.
– Dynamic Structured Snippets – 
Like the 2 previous extensions, Dynamic Structured Snippets are automatic, and Google will show them when your ads and landing pages qualify. They’ll reflect content pulled directly from your site.
– Seller Ratings –
For law firms, seller ratings likely aren’t going to be something you’ll use. Google pulls your seller rating from a number of sources (you can find more info about these sites here) and will display it alongside your ads.
Adwords extensions are very valuable tool and many in the legal industry miss out on them. More than just taking up real estate on the search page, they provide another opportunity to catch the interest of searchers and bring them to your site.
In part 2, I’ll cover how to set up sitelink extensions. Stay tuned!

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