First of all, let’s quickly go over the changes, and what Expanded Text Ads (ETAs) bring us:

  • Standard ads have one 25 character headline, ETAs have two 30 character headlines
  • Standard ads have two 35 character description lines, ETAs have one 80 character description line
  • Standard ads have custom display URLs, ETAs have a set URL, followed by two customisable URL paths

Here are eight more things we think you should know about Expanded Text Ads

1. You have to fill in both headlines

Both headlines are required. They won't appear as one continual headline though, they'll be separated by a hyphen. Treat Headline 1 as your main headline, and Headline 2 as a secondary headline, because…

2. Headline 2 won’t always show in its entirety

Whilst each headline can be 30 characters, Google may truncate your ad. The truncation won’t happen all the time, and won’t occur in Headline 1.

Google are suggesting keeping the total character length of both headlines at 33 or below, to ensure you don’t get truncated. However, that leaves a lot of wasted space that you may want to take advantage of.

3. Headline 2 will never appear in front of Headline 1

Furthermore, Headline 2 will always accompany Headline 1. Headline 1 will never be on its own.

4. URL paths are not compulsory

Just like standard display URLs, you don’t have to fill in the path fields; you can also just fill in one if you prefer.

5. Display URLs do not truncate

If you have two paths, trust them to always show consistently.

6. If Google spread your description line over two lines, there is no set point where it will decide to split

We’d expect it to split it roughly in half, but this may not happen if your description line isn’t very long

7. There is no deadline for creating Extended Text Ads

However, your competitors will be setting them up, and you will fall behind if you don’t set them up for your campaigns. Standard text ads are likely to have lower a lower associated Quality Score and Ad Rank than their Expanded counterparts.

Also, you won’t be able set up Standard text ads as of the 26th October.

8.Tracking templates and Custom Parameters remain unchanged

If you’re using custom tagging on your URLs, these will perform in exactly the same way