Ad Writing

6 top tips to write great ad copy that sells

Written By
Rachel May Quin
Writen By:
Rachel May Quin
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You’ve got your keywords, you’ve defined your audience, you’re ready to go. But hold up… have you thought about what you’re going to say? If search advertising is your digital shop front, it’s more important than ever to think about how you’re going to make those casual browsers stop in their tracks and give your ad a click.

Google dominates about 92% of the global search engine market and savvy digital marketers are turning to search campaigns to boost brand awareness and drive leads.

The ad copy you write will make or break your ad. Even with the best page placement in the world, if your potential customers haven’t got a reason to click, you won’t be making any sales.

Don’t worry, we’re here to help. Before we dive into our tips on how to create amazing ad copy that sells, let’s quickly recap on what you’ve got to play with:

  • 3x headlines (30 characters each) - the title of your ad and the perfect place to draw in customers with your keywords and a short summary of who you are
  • 2x descriptions (90 characters each) - this is the place to get creative! Add your detail and describe what you’re offering, include any promotions or USPs here
  • 2x paths (15 characters each) - the path is essentially the display URL, here you can give people an indication of where you’re sending them instead of a garbled URL (i.e., it’s a good idea to use keywords here too

Okay, let’s go!

Get to the point

You’ve got the best product or company in the world. You’re super excited, you want everybody to know how amazing it is, and your ad is the place to shout it from the rooftops. But here’s the thing, you’ve got under a second to grab their attention. No pressure.

The trick to getting the most out of your ads is to get straight to the point. At this stage in the marketing funnel, your target audience really doesn’t care about the eight amazing features plus the processing power AND ALSO it can water your plants and make you the perfect matcha latte (although we will admit, that is really ).

When you start to write, drill right down to the user intent when they’ve gone to that search bar and started typing. What is it about your product or company that’s going to change their life, solve a problem, or even address a need they didn’t know they had? Once you’ve got those golden words on paper, take a step back.

You’re really connected with what you sell and naturally, it’s so tempting to splurge every little thought and detail into the ad. Strip it back, highlight the USPs, and give your potential customers just enough information to keep them wanting more… and hopefully clicking through to your website.

Here's an example we love from pet sitting site BorrowMyDoggy.

BrrowMyDoggy Google Ad

Be more human

How often do you sit and have a lovely chat with a Siri? In the interest of full disclosure, we have occasionally asked Siri who let the dogs out, but that’s not the same thing. When you’re trying to reach new customers, it’s important to talk to them as a person, not as a faceless company blasting out sales messages.

Ideally, you’ve created buyer personas to help guide who you’re talking to, i.e. ‘I want to reach millennials with at least one pet living in a major city’. The best way to write copy that actually sells is to think like a consumer and speak to your ideal customer on their level. What appeals to you? What would make you click?

If you think your ad sounds boring and stilted, that’s because it probably is. When you’re writing, think about what they want and why they’re searching today. Appeal to the human, save the robot for the dance floor.

Hit those keywords

Don’t be afraid to tell people exactly who you are and what you do. A mysterious copy line might seem sexy, but if your potential customer has literally no idea what you’re selling, they won’t waste their time trying to find out more. They’ll move right along, probably to your competitor.

If you’ve touched on the keywords the searcher is looking for immediately in your copy, they know they’ve found the right thing. For example, if you’re selling costumes for pets, you might want to get that upfront.

But remember, less is more. Don’t squeeze in every keyword under the sun, make sure they fit naturally into the rhythm of your copy. Ad copy overstuffed with keywords is just as bad as a line that tells you nothing.

For example…

Get your keywords in your ads

Why not try?

Get your keywords in your ads

Check, check, and check again!

We’ve all been there. You spent hours agonising over crafting the perfect copy, you’ve tweaked every word to perfection and breathing a sigh of relief, you hit send… and then you spot that glaringly obvious typo.

Google has rules around meeting professional and editorial standards, but if you want your customers to take you seriously, take the time to check and double-check your ad copy before anything goes live. Read it yourself, read it out loud, have a colleague check it.

Make sure you’ve used punctuation where it makes sense, checked thoroughly for spelling errors, and that it reads well. Don’t let your ads be sunk by an embarrassing error.

Check spelling in Google Ads

Highlight important extras

Everybody loves to feel like they’re getting a bargain. You can never underestimate the power of a good discount to make customers feel valued.

If you offer 10% off to new customers, free delivery or a special exclusive to customers willing to buy from you, make sure to flag that up front in your copy to draw in those customers that need a little extra persuasion.

You should also make sure you’ve pulled out those most compelling key benefits, whether it’s about the product or you as a company. If you’ve recently won an award or been voted number one in your industry, shout about it! You’ve it.

If you’ve got a lot of great things to highlight, this is where it could be worth adding a Google ad extension, giving you more space to showcase why you potential customers should pick you. According to Google, adding an extension typically increases an ad’s click-through rate (CTR) by several percentage points. You can choose from call buttons, location information, extra links, data capture and even app downloads.

Be clear about next steps

You’re paying good money to appear in Google search, the most important thing about creating great ads is making sure you’re explicit about what you want your customers to do next.

Need a helping hand with your Google ad copy? At Prof, we’re obsessed with Google Ads and we’re all about turning your clicks into customers. Chat to us about how we can help you run better Google ads, get in touch.

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