Everything You Need To Know About Click-To-Text
What Is It?
With more searchers using smartphones than ever, Google is driving forward with their efforts to make the user experience more mobile friendly. In line with this strategy, they have released a new tool that allows advertisers to connect directly with consumers utilizing one of the most widely used and easily executed methods of communication—Text Messages—in Google Paid Search Ads.
How Does It Work?
Through the use of message extensions, Google advertisers can include an SMS icon in their paid search ads which will allow customers to immediately text message the company when it is tapped on.
These icons only show up on devices that are compatible with SMS messaging, making this a “mobile only” extension. If a customer uses one of the keywords that advertisers are already paying to be aligned with (e.g “used car sales”) on a mobile device, they will see the icon and be able to send a pre-populated message (set up in advance) in order to receive more information. The user does have the opportunity to customize this message in order to make the message more specific to their buying needs.
What You’ll Need
A Phone Number That Has SMS Capabilities – Utilizing a cell phone or even a CRM with text capabilities, businesses will use this device to receive and reply to consumers.
Extension Text (35 Characters) – This is the text which will appear alongside the Google Search Ad in the SERP. Using a very direct, easy to comprehend call to action such as “TEXT US NOW” or “SEND US A TEXT MESSAGE” will guarantee that the searcher expects to send a text message if the icon is clicked.
Message Text (100 Characters) – This text will be from the point of view of the consumer seeking information. Providing a message that is easily customizable and that acts as an icebreaker is recommended for higher conversions. Using messaging that is customized per ad group or campaign will also increase the effectiveness of this tool as the inquiry will already relate to the ad topic.
Does It Work?
According to Google research, more than “30% of all online shopping purchases now happen on mobile phones,” and “97% of smartphone owners use texting as the app they use most frequently.”
Because this is a new tool, it’s hard to conclude whether this will be more or less effective than other mobile tools such as Click To Call extensions. According to Google’s research, “65% of consumers say they’d consider using messaging to connect with a business to get information about a product or service, or to schedule an in-person appointment.” Google searchers can now reach you at the moment when they’re most inclined to convert. With a direct channel of communication, there is no lag time between searching their topic of interest and contacting you, the seller. The time sensitivity involved in todays market means it’s essential to offer a selection of communication methods from apps to websites to click to call and now SMS.
Like other ad extensions, Message Extensions are eligible to show alongside advertisers’ ads on the SERP making them larger and more feature rich – increasing CTR.
Click To Message Extensions are at no additional charge, so there is no risk to the advertiser.
Google Research Source & Announcement: https://adwords.googleblog.com/2016/10/click-to-message-ads-bring-new-and-easy.html