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How Does Google Ads Generate Responsive Search Ads

Updated on February 5, 2020
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One of the best digital marketing Experts of 2020 and over 14 years of marketing experience and has led the digital marketing strategy.

How Does Google Ads Generate Responsive Search Ads

How Does Google Ads Generate Responsive Search Ads
How Does Google Ads Generate Responsive Search Ads | Source

How Does Google Ads Generate Responsive Search Ads?

In the summer of 2020, Google unveiled several new updates and features to its PPC advertising platform. Of these updates, responsive search ads was a key standout.

At first, the most significant aspect of this new ad type was the physical length and size of the ads. By increasing the character length of headlines and adding an additional slot for both headlines and descriptions, responsive search ads doubled the maximum character length of expanded text ads.

Reason enough to be excited, right? After all, bigger ads command more space on the SERPs and are thereby harder to miss.

However, the power of responsive search ads is really because of the unique way that Google Ads generates these types of ad messages. How does Google Ads generate responsive search ads, you ask? Well, that is what this article will explore.

How Are Responsive Search Ads Different From Traditional Ads?

Aside from being physically longer, responsive search ads differ from traditional ads in one major way: they are dynamic! You aren’t just creating one, fixed ad. Rather, you’re creating thousands of ads simultaneously.

Well, more precisely, Google is creating thousands of ads simultaneously.

When you create a responsive search ads, Google asks for several ad components at once. You can enter up to fifteen headlines and four descriptions. Then, Google uses all of these smaller parts to assemble thousands of different combinations of completed ad messages.

That’s right; responsive search ads are automatically generated!

How Does Google Ads Generate Responsive Search Ads?

Now that there is an understanding of how these ad messages are unique, the entitled question can be answered.

The easiest answer is that Google uses a sophisticated machine learning algorithm that creates and tests various ad combinations.

Initially, the algorithm just makes simple guesses at what ad messages to create with the headlines and descriptions you’ve provided. But, once the first few messages are published, the algorithm analyzes the data and starts to learn what sort of messages your target audience responds to most.

Then, using these insights it further adjusts the ad messages to improve performance. The longer your responsive search ads operate, the better they become at connecting audiences to the correct messages.

The algorithm factors in user signals and behaviors that PPC marketers can’t see. This adds another dimension of data that you wouldn’t typically be able to leverage without responsive search ads.

Do PPC Marketers Have Any Control Over Their Responsive Search Ads?

Yes! Not only do you select the content of your ad messages and how many unique headlines or descriptions that the algorithm will use, but you can also pin assets to different positions.

For example, if you always want a headline containing your company name to appear at the beginning of your ad messages, you could pin it to position 1. You can also select to always pin a certain offer or feature that you feel is essential to your ad marketing.

This gives marketers some control over the automated ad messages that Google creates. However, it is crucial that you don’t overspin.

When you pin headlines and descriptions to certain positions, you’re limiting the number of possible permutations that Google can create. If you limited your responsive search ads too much, then the algorithm will be severely hindered.

Reporting With Responsive Search Ads

As the Google algorithm learns about the most effective types of ad messages, it also creates a report where you can see some of these insights.

To access your responsive ad report, you need to filter your ads by attributes, then select ad types and check the box next to responsive search ads.

This report will detail the impressions and impression share of each ad combination, the strength of the ads created and you can even look at how individual ad assets perform.

As your responsive search ads mature, the data contained in this report will also grow.

Let’s grow the business with Google Ads


Automation is a big topic of conversation in the Digital Age. Responsive search ads are another example of how machine learning can assist PPC marketers and help them reach a deeper understanding of how to improve campaigns and advertising messages.

© 2020 Frank


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