5 Tips for Writing Text Ads for Google AdWords

What an ad says is just as important as where it is displayed and who sees it. Learn five tips to write more compelling ads for your Google Ads campaigns.

Text ads are a major component of Google AdWords and many other online platform PPC strategies.

If you’re going to run ads on the Google Ads network (until recently, called Google AdWords), you’re going to need to do a little copywriting. What an ad says is just as important as where it is displayed and who sees it.

A Google Ad has a headline, URL, and a small description. The headline is the first part of the ad that people see, and then the description is the hook. If you can convince someone what you have on your site is worthwhile with your attention grabbing headline and powerful copywriting, you can generate some relevant traffic and leads.

The following are some tips on how to write text ads that will boost your conversions when using Google Ads.

Tip #1: Keep It Relevant

Think about the user when copywriting. Let’s say you sell fresh roasted coffee beans. Your potential customer types in “roasted coffee beans on sale” into Google. What headline do you believe that person would most likely click on?

  1. All About Coffee Beans
  2. Premium Fresh Roasted Coffee Beans
  3. 10% Off Coffee Beans – $0 Shipping

If you chose C, you are correct.

It’s likely the Google user wasn’t just looking for coffee beans, but she was looking for coffee beans that are on sale, as in discounted. Always test the most relevant ad copy first, and then later test more creative variations.

Tip #2: What Makes You Unique

You’re likely competing with hundreds or even thousands of people selling the same products and/or services. You need to stand out in some way. Think back to when you wanted to start your business. What did you want to do different from others? That’s likely your unique selling point.

Tell prospective customers your unique selling point in the ad text. It must be short and to the point. Many people need help with this one because it can be hard to convey such a big passion and dream into one short statement.

Tip #3: Tell People What To Do Next

Your unique selling point in your text is what entices, and then you’ll need to tell them what you want them to do. This is called the call-to-action.

What’s the next step in your sales process?  Should your prospect call you? Go to your website to learn more?  Whatever it is, spell it out in your ads so it’s crystal clear.

Tip #4: Create Urgency

Another tactic that can work well with Google Ads is to create urgency in your ad copy. This can be time-based (ex. For a limited time only) or quantity based (ex. Only 20 seats left).  Ads with urgency encourage prospective customers to take action now versus procrastinate. It’s human nature to not want to miss out on a special deal.

Warning:  Be careful to not overuse urgency in your ads and make sure your ads are up-to-date. If prospective customers discover your ads aren’t accurate and the time-based or quantity-based deadlines weren’t real, then that will obviously hurt your reputation online.

Tip #5: Identify With the Audience

You know who is searching for the keywords you are using for your ads. If you don’t, you need to do some research on the people who are searching them. Your text ad should identify with the user.

Let’s take the example of the roasted coffee beans. It’s highly likely someone who is searching for “roasted coffee beans on sale” likes coffee or is buying it for a friend. You can also assume the person wants a good deal. Combine the two when writing the text ad.

You can simply write “Love coffee? Our specialty roasted coffee beans are 10% off with free shipping. Offer ends soon.”

You’ve identified with the audience, given them what they are looking for, let them know what the unique selling point is, and created a sense of urgency.


Writing text ads isn’t as difficult as it may seem when you first start. Start with the headline, which should be relevant to the keywords you’re targeting. As you write the text portion, be sure to include your unique selling point, call-to-action, sense of urgency, and identify with the audience.

It’s important to know that there is some trial and error when writing text ads. Even the best copywriters in the world don’t land the perfect ad the first time. Test two different ads at one time to see which one performs better, and then take the better performing ad and put it up against another ad variation. With little changes, you will eventually get to an ad that performs the best for the identified keywords.

Want more Google AdWords tips to improve your performance? Click here to grab a copy of our Ultimate Google AdWords Checklist.

Author: Phil Frost

Phil is Founder and COO of Main Street ROI. Phil leads the company’s operations and is primary creator of Main Street ROI’s marketing training programs. He is an expert in search engine marketing, website analytics, and sales funnel optimization. Phil’s marketing thought leadership has been published on Forbes.com, Inc.com, MSN.com, and many other major business media outlets.

Phil earned his Master of Engineering Management degree from Thayer School of Engineering and Tuck School of Business and his Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Engineering degrees from Dartmouth College. While attending Dartmouth, Phil started every game on the varsity football team as the defensive safety.

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