Decoding Digital: Responsive Search Ads

Written by | Tagged Decoding Digital, Digital Marketing, SEM,

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Welcome to our Decoding Digital series, where we take complex digital marketing topics and make them easy to understand! Today we’re talking about Responsive Search Ads.

First off, why should you care about Responsive Search Ads?

Responsive Search Ads will be the standard now and are likely to bring in more qualified paid search leads due to the way they are optimized.

What are Responsive Search Ads?

Responsive Search Ads are now the default ad type in Google ads (replacing Expanded Text Ads). Google just announced that you will no longer be able to edit Expanded Text Ads beginning on June 30, 2022, making RSAs even more important.

Traditionally, text ads consisted of headlines and descriptions that we would write in their intended order. We would often create multiple versions of an ad to show things in a different order or to test out different headlines and descriptions. With RSAs, each piece of the ad is viewed as an asset and Google can mix and match assets to find what they deem as the best combination for the campaign goals. These require quite a bit more thought and time because 1) each asset needs to be able to stand on its own and 2) you need to add a lot more assets to each ad.

What can we do to prepare for Responsive Search Ads?

Now that we know for sure that support for Expanded Text Ads will be ending, all accounts in Google Ads should begin the transition to RSAs, and should aim to complete this transition before June 2022.

Some best practices to keep in mind:

  • Create these ads directly within Google Ads in order to pay attention to the Ad Strength rating (aim for Good at minimum, Excellent if possible) and decide which (if any) headlines and descriptions to pin.
  • Create 1 RSA per adgroup. These can run alongside Expanded Text Ads for now.
  • Add 8-10 unique headlines per ad (30 characters each). Add applicable keywords (prioritize high-performing keywords) to at least 2 of these, but make sure they aren’t too repetitive. At least 3 headlines can be more conversion- or CTA-focused and less keyword-focused.
  • Add at least 2 unique descriptions per ad (90 characters each). You can add more if desired. It just gives the algorithm more possibilities to work with.
  • Ensure all headlines and descriptions could stand on their own and combined with the other assets in any order.
  • Pin headlines and descriptions using the thumbtack icon to ensure they show in their designated spot. However, we have noticed pinning makes the Ad Strength rating go down, so only do this when absolutely crucial.

Questions about RSAs or the future of PPC? Contact us!

When you work with us, you get access to a full (fun!) team of marketing experts. Get to know the Rosenberg Advertising family!


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