Attention Google advertisers: in the coming weeks get ready for a new ad extension which will allow customers to reach you at the moment when they’re most inclined to convert.
Google is introducing click-to-message ads, combining SMS messaging with search ads in an effort to generate more leads and increase conversions.
Through the use of message extensions, advertisers can include an icon in their ads which will allow customers to contact the company via text message when it is tapped on.
After tapping on the ad, the customer’s default SMS messaging application will open with a pre-written message inquiring about the product or service. In reality, customers can send any message they’d like, the pre-written message is just for added convenience.
Texting a business prior to making a purchase, whether it be a product, service, or hotel reservation, certainly strays from the norm. So, will customers actually engage with message extensions? According to Google’s research, many say they would at least consider it:
”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.”
There’s little risk for advertisers when it comes to using message extensions. There’s no added cost — like any other pay-per-click ad, the advertiser is only charged if someone taps on the icon to send a text message.
Setting up message extensions requires your business to have a phone number that is capable of sending and receiving text messages. By the same token, message extensions are only shown to people searching on phones that can send and receive text messages.
As an added convenience to advertisers who wish to use message extensions when they become available, one extension can be applied to an entire ad group or an entire campaign.