Expanded Text Ads are going Away; Here’s why we won’t miss them and neither will you:
Expanded text ads (ETAs) have long been a staple digital advertising and marketing ever since they became the gold standard back in 2017. However, while ETAs have long been the standard ad for every advertiser, you can bet your ads that they will be going by the wayside soon. Google has announced that starting on June 30th 2022, advertisers will no longer be able to create new or edit old ETAs. In the meantime advising advertisers begin working on responsive search ads to replace their current ETAs.
Why are ETAs going away?
ETAs, as mentioned above, were once the standard way to advertise on Google. So why are they going away? Basically, they are outdated. ETAs are certainly one of the best ways to get full control over what potential clients are seeing in your advertisements, but they are not optimized for every viewer. While ETAs might give the advertiser a large amount of control over their advertisements, they are generally a “jack of all trades” solution to digital advertising. Sure, they are cheap to run and get your business in front of a large audience, but they are inefficient and more expensive than the alternative in the long run. Simply put, ETAs are becoming obsolete due to the amount of optimization in the digital marketing/advertising space. ETAs are also “dumb.” What I mean is, ETAs do not change themselves depending on the situation they are put in. ETAs do not have the capability to adapt their own message to different audiences, nor can they change themselves to compete better in auctions against other ads. Essentially, ETAs cannot frame your business differently depending on where the ad is shown. This can limit the amount of people who will willingly click on the ad.
What is the replacement for ETAs?
Google is going all in on responsive search ads (RSAs) to replace ETAs almost entirely. RSAs are an ingenious way to get advertising in front of the most relevant potential clients without sacrificing the message of your advertisement. RSAs rely on automation to put your advertisements in front of the most relevant audience, instead of putting your advertisements in front of the most people possible. Google claims that advertisers that switch from ETAs to RSAs see an average of 7% more conversions at a similar cost to ETAs. With those kinds of numbers, you would be hard pressed to find any advertising agency that would advocate for an ETA over an RSA ad campaign. Unlike ETAs, RSAs give you the benefit of multiple headlines and descriptions, which Google can then mix and match to show the best possible combination to potential clients. In addition, the right combination of headline and description can help your ad compete for more screen real-estate.
Why won’t I miss them?
Your money is going to be used to advertise to more relevant audiences than ever before. This is precisely the reason that you shouldn’t miss ETAs once they’re phased out next year. RSAs, while more expensive to run in the short term, will perform better than ETAs (less expensive too!) in the long run. RSA’s are driven by data, not guesswork. Automation may seem scary, but really, it’s the natural progression of the industry. The more we can utilize data, the better your results will be. If you are worried about the change from ETAs to RSAs and how that affects your business, we at Lizard SEM will be happy to help you navigate this new feature. We pride ourselves on being ahead of the curve, and knowledgeable about the newest tech out there. We see each change as a new challenge, and a new opportunity to get better results.