Expanded Text Ads, Responsive Ads Begin Rolling Out

As previously announced, Google AdWords’ Expanded Text Ads have begun exiting beta as of Tuesday morning, and rolling out to advertisers nationwide.

The revised ad format, which is shown below, will run alongside legacy text ads in Google SERPs for the near-term. However, as of October 26th (per Search Engine Land), standard text ads will no longer be accepted by AdWords.

Image via Google

This delay will give advertisers a few months to A/B test standard vs Expanded Text Ads formats. However, given that the end result is one that’s predetermined (ETAs will remain, regardless of individual performance), it’s more of a chance to test messaging than anything else.

In an early beta, I have seen an increase in CPCs without much change in CTR via the Expanded Text Ads format, something that others participating in the test that I’ve spoken with have echoed. However, this may just be the result of so few of these ETAs currently running; or the fact that these tests have run at the same time that brand CPCs on mobile have seemingly increased with little rationale.

Whatever the cause, it’s good to see Google giving advertisers ample time to test & refine their ETA messaging before the October 26th cutoff.

Responsive Display Ads

In related news, Google is slowly introducing another new ad format to AdWords as well: responsive display ads. These ads are meant to fit to any publisher’s website, regardless of which size & format they support. Like the display ad builder, Google provides advertisers the means to develop these ads directly in AdWords, with no creative experience required. Responsive ads from AdWords are designed to show as a native ad on one website, for example, and a text ad on another.

The new responsive ad format is available via GDN.