Google Ads Headlines Just Got Longer

Good news for car dealers, the search giant rolled out changes to its search-ad format in late July that give dealers more characters to work with; meaning more descriptive in their sales ads.

Instead of having one 25-character headline, the new Google AdWords format now has two headlines of 30 characters each that will allow dealerships to write more attention-grabbing headlines. In addition, the description section becomes one consolidated 80-character line instead of two 35-character lines.

Consultancy PCG Research estimates that franchised dealerships spend around half of their digital budgets on AdWords, which amounts to millions of dollars annually. With so much cash going into AdWords, Google says the expanded text ads will help ads “work harder across screens” to reach mobile shoppers who want to know exactly what a business offers before clicking over.

The “30-30-80” format hasn’t been out long, but Dominion Dealer Solutions says it’s seeing higher click-through rates thanks to the lengthier pitches it can put in ads. Around 30 of Dominion’s dealer clients were allowed to test the expanded ads during the beta phase in June and July. AdWords had been on the “25-35-35” format since its inception 15 years ago. Tighter character limit of years past sometimes made it a struggle to get a message across.

Dealerships should focus intently on crafting headlines that take advantage of the space. One benefit is that stores will be able to fit stronger calls to action in the headline as opposed to shoving them into the description area where people may not look.

Instead of a headline saying “New Mazda6,” for example, Peck said the added space could be used to say “starting at X dollars” or that a store has the vehicle in stock.



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