Offer Extensions: How To Guide for AdWords Setup

Last week, we introduced Google’s new Offer Extensions, what it is, and how you can use it. Today, we will talk about the business implications of this new type of extension and how it will impact brands, businesses and marketers online. This blog post also provides a thorough walk-through on how to properly set up Offer Extensions in your Adwords account.

First Things First: Business Implications

Will Offer Extensions Impact Brands & Businesses Online? Yes.

Once rolled out to the public, Offer Extensions will affect how brands, businesses, and marketers do business online for a few reasons. Businesses will be able to put their coupons, discounts, rebates, and other deals front and center in Google Search – which will be dirt cheap. Advertisers may be able to attract visitors to their site or store front for as little as $0.10! AdWords charges you the same rate for all clicks, regardless of whether the link clicked is within your your ad text or within your ad extension. The cost you will pay for a click depends on how well optimized your AdWords account is and the type of keywords you’re bidding for. Businesses will start taking paid search advertising more seriously which will attract more strategic approaches and competition. Expect marketers to shift marketing funds away from traditional mediums and reallocate budget to digital marketing. As businesses realize the value in paid search advertising and start saturating the search industry, this will also drive up the cost per click of advertising online. Early adopters will get the most benefit from AdWords advertising whereas the laggards will struggle to catch up.

How To Set Up AdWords Offer Extensions

1.) Create an AdWords Campaign

After signing into your AdWords account, select the Campaigns tab and click on the New Campaign button. Offer Extensions are only available at campaign level of your account.

The benefit of campaign level extensions is that you can create one Offer Extension and apply it to show with any of your ads found within that campaign. The disadvantage is that you cannot offer different Extensions for different ad groups within that campaign. For example, let’s say you have a Widgets campaign and have Blue Widgets and Red Widgets ad groups within it. If you were offering ‘Buy One Get One’ for Red Widgets and ‘20% Off for Orders Over $150’ for Blue Widgets, you would need to create a separate campaign or take turns running only one offer at a time.

2.) Select the Offer Extensions Option within Ad Extensions Tab

Once you enter your campaign information and save your settings, click on the Ad Extensions tab. By default, Location Extensions will be selected. Click on the dropdown to select Offer Extensions. Click on the + New Extension button below the dropdown menu.

3.) Fill Out the Offer Extensions Form

The next step will be to fill out the Offer Extensions form that appears. This includes providing an up-to 60 character offer headline, promotion start and end date, type of discount, offer restrictions, how to redeem information.

Offer Headline:

Your offer headline should be a summary of your offer – remember to include any discounts or restrictions. Your offer headline will appear below your text ad as an extension.

Best practices:

  • Be Specific. Be transparent and tell users the deal they can get – this includes what the deal is, how long it lasts, redemption criteria, and any or restrictions/conditions.
  • Be Consistent. Your offer headline should match up to the Offer Extension settings you create. Don’t set up the Extension to last for two weeks but have messaging say the promotions ends tomorrow – be consistent.
  • Give a Good Deal. Give users to see your ad a reason to click on it. Provide a unique deal that offers a significant amount or percent discount.
  • Differentiate. Try to keep wording used within your ad and within your offer header different. This method provides more information for users; therefore increasing relevance, which makes them more likely to click on your ad.
  • Be Exclusive. Users should be required to use the offer or promotional code to receive the deal. If they don’t require redemption code or barcode – then it shouldn’t be listed under the Offer Extension option.
  • Follow AdWords Policies. Learn more about offer extension policies and ad policies.

Redemption Starts:

This is the first date that customers can begin to use your offer.

Redemption Ends:

The offer redemption end date is the last date that customers can use your offer. The redemption end date can be any date in the future that you’d like. Google won’t run your offer alongside your ad after the redemption end date.

Best practices:

  • Include an Expiration Date. Your Offer Extension must include an expiration date. In fact, Google examines the duration you set as a signal to gauge the quality of the offer. Accordingly, a general sale or regularly offered promotion would not be acceptable.
  • Redemption Period. Be mindful that people will be able to redeem your offer both on the Redemption Start Date and Redemption End Date you set.

Discount: this is the type of discount that customers will receive when they redeem your offer. Your offer discount can be for a certain percent or amount discount, or you can create additional offer discounts such as free shipping.

Best practices:

  • Give a Good Deal. This is such a valuable point I thought I’d mention it again. Give users who see your ad a reason to click on it. Provide a unique deal that offers a significant amount or percent discount.
  • The Offer Must Be An Offer. It shouldn’t be a description of your normal pricing or offering, and it shouldn’t be a notice of a sale, discount, or regularly offered promotion. Customers must use the offer in order to get the deal.

Offer Restrictions: you have the option to include restrictions in your offer. You can create an offer, for example, that requires customers to spend a certain amount of money in order to receive your offer discount (i.e. get $A off when you spend $B, or $X off with a $Y purchase) within the available 60 characters.

Upload Image:

You can select an existing image (if you have uploaded images for display advertising) or choose to upload a new image.

Best practices:

  • Build Trust With Your Customers. Upload an image of your business logo or a product that you sell.
  • File Type. Your image should be a .gif, .png, or .jpg file.
  • File Size. Your image shouldn’t exceed 100 x 100 pixels.

Where to Redeem:

You can choose to have your offer redeemed online or in-store.

Best practices:

  • For Online Orders, Use your site URL. Your landing page should include your offer headline, deal details, image of your choice and a barcode/code to redeem your offer (all of which you need to provide yourself).
  • For In-Store Orders, Use a Google Hosted Page. A Google hosted landing page will include your offer headline, deal details, image of your choice and a bar code/promo code to redeem your offer (all of which you need to provide yourself).
  • Make It Easy. Make it simple for users to view, save, print, email or SMS your offer.
  • Manufacturer Coupons. Advertisers can also promote a manufacturers coupon via the in-store option.

What Kind of Offers Would You Set up? Leave your comments in the section below.

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