Why do ads with Sitelinks have better Click through rates?
Back in April I wrote a blog about ad extensions and Sitelinks in particular. I showed that across 13 different accounts, on average ads have a 150% higher click through rate when Sitelinks are displayed. But there was no way of telling if the increased CTR was a result of people clicking on the Sitelinks themselves or if it was just the increased real estate of the Pay Per Click ads that was making them more appealing.
Then on November 30, 2011 Google rolled out a new segmentation option for ad extensions. You can now segment by click type. So in this example below, I can clearly see that the huge majority of people are still clicking on the headline of the ads instead of clicking on individual sitelinks, or location extensions.
I was curious if this trend was consistent across all my accounts so I did a little research and confirmed that even though displaying Sitelinks dramatically increases your CTR, people are still clicking on the Headline. I reached this conclusion by taking a sample of 20 campaigns from a variety of accounts and I compared the Headline CTR to the Sitelink CTR. Here’s what I saw:
On average the Headline CTR is 1233% higher than the Sitelink CTR. What this tells me, is that while it’s crucial to include Sitelinks as often as possible, it is also crucial to make sure your Headline Dest. Url is pointed to your most important conversion action. We can not rely on Sitelinks to send people to conversion actions because people simply don’t click on Sitelinks.
Ad extensions are a huge benefit because they make our ads more interactive and more appealing to end users.
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