6 Outstanding Google Ad Examples Used by Top Brands

7 minute read

Google Ads may be tough, but when you get them right, paid ads can bring you $2 for every $1 you invest. Pay-per-click (PPC) visitors are 50 percent more likely to purchase than organic visitors, according to Unbounce, and paid ads can increase brand awareness by up to 80 percent.

These six Google Ads examples provide insight into ways to make ads work, from FOMO and social proof to benefits-led copy.

Related: Getting started with pay-per-click marketing

1. Leverage FOMO: Use the Countdown Timer

FOMO—fear of missing out—may have only entered the marketing lexicon in 2013, but the tactic is much older. Marketing teams have been leveraging the psychology of loss aversion for decades. The idea is that consumers will make illogical decisions in order to avoid perceived losses, something that’s backed up by data: Venture Harbour saw sales increases of over 300 percent when they leveraged scarcity and urgency in their campaigns.

Paid search marketers can tap into FOMO by creating a sense of urgency or scarcity, often through limited-time offers or deals or showcasing peer group purchases.

The Google Ads countdown timer literally counts down the days or hours until the end of a special offer. Searchers’ innate loss aversion means your ad has a better chance of beating out your competitors’.

Medicare Cost Reports Google Ad examples

A countdown creates an imminent threat of loss, tapping into psychological principles to increase clicks. (Source)

Countdown timers work. Kylie Beals, eCommerce Marketing Manager at Clarks Americas, says: “When using countdown ads over the Black Friday / Cyber Monday weekend, we noticed a 32 percent uplift in CTR. The ads proved effective at driving urgency once the consumer was onsite because conversion rates increased 3 percent over static ads.”

How to Set Up a Google Ads Countdown

You can set up countdown timers in any type of ad by adding the countdown widget to the ad text. Just add a curly bracket ({) to the ad’s copy and select “countdown” from the dropdown menu that appears. Then fill in the time the countdown ends and the number of days prior to the end date that you want the countdown to start showing.

2. Be Specific: Show Numbers and Prices

Ever noticed that most Google Ads contain numbers? That’s because Google Ads headlines and descriptions containing numerals consistently outperform Ads without. In fact, WordStream found that numbered headlines beat non-numbered with a 217 percent increase in CTR and a 23 percent improvement in conversion rates.

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Google Ads headlines and descriptions containing numbers consistently outperform Ads without.
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This is due to the power of specificity. Precise details, including numbers, create an impression of authenticity and catch searchers’ attention; the more specific the number, the greater the impact.

Online shopping site Airyclub provides a reasonable PPC example of the power of specificity through numbers and prices. The title includes both an exact price and a percentage discount, and the description draws attention to “20,000+” products.

Airyclub Google Ad examples

But this Google Ads example isn’t perfect. Including the exact number of products—say, 21,452—would have been much more specific.

There’s also an added bonus to including the real price of a product or service in your ad—deterring searchers who aren’t willing to pay that price. Customers who aren’t a good fit will not click on your ad, and this is a good thing: This can result in better conversion rates and fewer bounces, which can increase Quality Score in the longer term.

How to Leverage Specificity With Dynamic Pricing

If you include prices in your Google Ads, they have to be accurate. Searchers who click on your ad only to find pricing discrepancies on the website will likely feel cheated and bounce from the page, costing you money and Quality Score credibility.

Avoid this by using Dynamic Parameters to guarantee that the pricing in ad copy always reflects the pricing on your website. To do this, add a parameter to the ad copy and then use code snippets to authorize the dynamic scripts. Follow the steps in detail here. Once set up, you can view the current status of these updates on the “Automatic item updates” section of your account.

3. Cater to Locals: Highlight Business Info

Many types of searches have a local intent behind them. Searchers seeking clinics, consultancy firms, click-and-collect stores, or anything where face-to-face interaction is still valued prefer to be shown local results. Google’s 2014 report on local search found that four in five consumers use search engines to find local information, and 50 percent of consumers who conducted a local search on their smartphone visited a store within a day.


Four in five consumers use search engines to find local information.
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The best local Google Ads examples use features such as local phone numbers and linked Google My Business addresses to increase local CTR.

Tree Ring Digital is a stellar example of a firm making the most of their local roots in Google Ads. The Denver, Colorado, based web design agency includes both a Denver phone number and a hyperlink to their Google Maps listing. They even include today’s opening hours, consolidating the impression that searchers could drop by the office if they need to.

Tree Ring Digital Google Ad examples

Tree Ring Digital’s local presence boosts consumer confidence in purchasing a service and reduces anxiety about quality or ease of communication.

How to Add Call Extensions and Local Extensions

The Call Extensions feature allows mobile searchers to call your business directly. Add it by going to Ads & Extensions in your Google Ads account page menu, click the + button, and add a Call Extension. Choose whether you want to add the extension at the account, campaign, or ad group level, and enable call reporting to track their performance.

Please note: When a searcher calls your business through Call Extensions, this counts as a click, so you’ll be charged for it.

The Local Extensions feature adds your business address or map location to your Google Ad to increase foot traffic. To add a Location Extension, set up a Google My Business account and link it to your Google Ads account. Then go to Ads & Extensions in your Google Ads account page menu, click the + button, and add a Location Extension. Your linked domain should show up automatically.

Related: How to build a PPC Strategy in 9 Steps

4. Convince Searchers to Click: Focus on Benefits

Google deems the phrase “click here” inappropriate, along with all other “generic” calls to action. That means marketers have to ask for the click implicitly to get the searcher from the SERP and onto your landing page.

As AdEspresso explains it, you need to “tell someone what they should do, and give them the motivation to do so.” The best CTA examples from Google Ads motivate searchers to click through action-oriented copy that emphasizes the positive results of taking action and draws out benefits from the searcher’s perspective.

Take this example from Virtual Employee.The headline includes perhaps one of the most powerful benefit words—save—while the description uses strong action words like “boost” and “hire.”

Virtual Employee Google Ad example

The ad description focuses entirely on the benefits of clicking and buying: you’ll cut out time zone worries, have a dedicated team on your side, and your keyword rankings will rise.

Virtual Employee reinforces these benefit-informed CTAs with a money-back guarantee that reduces barriers to action and a touch of social proof (more on that later) from the 10,000+ projects delivered.

How to Focus on Benefits in Ad Copy

Benefits address pain points. Use a buyer persona template to help define your ideal users’ challenges and problems, as well as what motivated them to look for solutions. Conducting interviews, talking to the sales team, and using social media listening tools will provide usable information about what pain points and benefits to include in ad copy.

When it comes to actually writing the copy, emphasize the positives of taking action. These might include savings, efficiency, performance enhancement, or even guarantees of the low risks of action. Money-back guarantees or free trials reduce barriers to action among risk-averse consumers.

Action words like try, get, and start can act as replacements for a “click here” CTA, while words such as “now” and “today” create a sense of urgency.

5. Multiply Clickable Options: Use Sitelinks

Sitelinks, those extra links you see at the foot of Google Ads, are the most flexible ad extensions around. They appear on all devices and can be coded to show tons of different variables, giving marketers more freedom to multiply calls to action. Sitelinks also allow you to segment searchers right from the SERPs, sending them to multiple landing pages and streamlining the sales funnel.

Google claiming that sitelinks increase conversions by between10 and 20 percent.

Fashion retailer Kate Spade makes great use of sitelinks in this Google Ad example to send shoppers to different parts of the website.

Kate Spade Google Ad examples for sitelinks

The categories are most likely the highest-trafficked, highest-converting categories on the site. But searchers looking just for purses will see a direct link to what they’re looking for.

Another Kate Spade Google Ad Examples

Activate sitelinks at the account, campaign, and ad group levels to refine the sitelinks individual searchers see. The closer your ad is to what the searcher needs, the more likely you are to win the click. Clicks on a sitelink cost you the same as a standard ad click.

How to Increase Clicks With Sitelinks

Choose whether you want to add sitelinks at the account, campaign, or ad group level. Then click the Ad extensions tab and go to “Sitelink Extensions.” From there, just click + to add an extension and fill in the URL and text you want the sitelink to show. Choose the devices you want to show the sitelink on and click save.

6. Use Social Proof: Include Reviews

Influencer marketing, case studies, and webpage testimonials are well-known examples of social proof at work. Social proof is a marketing tactic based on principles of normative social influence, basically the idea that humans will conform to circumstances in order to win acceptance.

Social proof taps into deep customer desires. Consumers actively seek out social proof in the form of reviews, and displaying social proof in your ads can help increase click-through rates.

Star review ratings are one of the simplest ways to use social proof in Google Ads. Rentalcars.com shows their 4.4 star rating from over 3,500 customers in this PPC ad example.

Rental Cars Google Ad Examples

Searchers drawn in by the £4 a day rental offer might worry that such a low price comes with low quality; the reviews neutralize those worries and help build social proof.

How to Use Social Proof with Seller Rating Extensions

Seller rating extensions are automated. That means you can’t add reviews to your ads yourself; rather, Google collects seller ratings from aggregated review sources like Trustpilot and adds them automatically.

You can increase your chances of getting a seller rating by partnering with a review aggregator site from this list of independent review sites approved by Google. Encourage happy customers to post reviews there. For example, you could offer an incentive for reviewers can help you gather reviews faster.

Note that seller ratings will display on ads in a country when Google sees that you have at least 100 unique ratings from reviewers in that country.

Let These 6 Google Ads Examples Inspire Your Paid Tactics

These Google Ads examples combine the best practices that allow you to up click-through rates and encourage conversion. If you’re looking to improve your Google Ads’ performance, incorporate these tactics into your campaigns and test their impact over time.

If you’re just starting out building paid ad campaigns, Alexa’s Advanced plan can help you scope out the competitions’ paid keywords and strategy, find paid keyword opportunities that work for your business.

Related: The Insider’s Guide to PPC Keyword Research

Google and the Google logo are registered trademarks of Google LLC, used with permission.

The post 6 Outstanding Google Ad Examples Used by Top Brands appeared first on Alexa Blog.

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