Paid Media

Google Rolls Out Review Extensions to Adwords Accounts

Almost four months after Google announced its release of review extensions, they are finally making them available to users with Adwords accounts. These review extensions allow businesses to show third party reviews directly on their online advertisements. For those of you who are running PPC campaigns, you better start using these extensions if you want to keep up with your competition.

Below is a screenshot of what these extensions look like:

New review extensions for AdWords
New review extensions for AdWords

Before you implement review extensions, be sure to review the policies Google created to keep them valid. Review extensions that do not adhere to Google's policies will be disapproved. To make sure this does not happen to you, be sure to follow these basic guidelines:

  • Be sure that your review came from a reliable third party source. Google says that your source must be a reputable website, newspaper, magazine, book or person. Personal blogs can not be used for extensions since Google does not classify them as a third party source. Whether your source is "reliable" or not will be determined directly by Google. A team is going to review the sources individually and make their own judgments as to whether or not your source is credible. I was told that as long as you are not in a grey area and don't directly violate any of the policies you should be fine.
  • You can use exact or paraphrased quotes as extensions. Parts of quotes can be used as long as you insert an ellipses (...) into the extension. Also, you can use paraphrased quotes as long as they are attributed and linked to the published source. In either instance, you want to make sure that your quotes were not manipulated in any way and that they were truly an outside opinion.
  • Make sure it is about the business as a whole. Reviews can't focus on a particular location, product, or service, and should be about an award or accolade received by the company.
  • Make sure the review is current. It should be less than a year old.
  • They can not highlight paid endorsements.

It will be interesting to see how these extensions affect click-through rates. Google's stated that they've had a good response to the extensions throughout the testing process and referenced a major Israeli airline that had a 10% increase in click-through rates after implementing review extensions into their campaigns.

Although these extensions have a lot of potential to be effective, it is impossible to say whether or not they will be beneficial to your individual ad campaign. With so many factors involved in getting customers to click, individual results are guaranteed to be different and will depend on your industry, demographics etc. For those of you not using review extensions, give them a shot. For those of you who are, what kind of results are you seeing?

John Crenshaw
John Crenshaw
UFO company founder. 15+ years experience in performance marketing.
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