How to Use Sitelinks with Search Campaigns

Posted by on Oct 11, 2013 in Advertising | 8 Comments
How to Use Sitelinks with Search Campaigns

If you’re not using sitelinks in your search campaigns, you’re seriously missing out. And here’s why.

Your ads for generic keywords and brand terms are displayed to a very wide range of people and you have limited space to win them over. With sitelinks, you’re given much more space to segment your audience, boast about your benefits and persuade them to click through to a specific page on your website that meets their needs.

What are Sitelinks?

Sitelinks enhance your ads with additional links and copy.

The sitelinks ad extension is an add-on available for Google AdWords and Bing Ads (although this post will focus on Google’s implementation) that enhances your ads with additional links and copy. Rather than sending all people to the same landing page, sitelinks display up to six extra links below your ad that users can choose from. And as of June, sitelinks can include two lines of description text each– they’re like a cluster of free mini-ads!

example of google adwords upgraded sitelinks

You’ll still have your standard ad, but you’ll be able to supplement it with more messaging and direct links that take up more of the coveted real estate on the search engine results page. It’s no surprise that advertisers who use sitelinks see their ad clickthrough rates improve by 30% on average. Utilizing sitelinks is all upside!

When Do They Display?

Sitelinks are designed to show up in situations where Google thinks your ad is the best result for a search. The format of your sitelinks will vary and not every sitelink you create will be displayed together. Your sitelinks won’t always display, but they’ll likely show up for searches on your unique brand terms and when your ad’s in the top position with a high quality.

What Do They Cost?

There’s no cost to setting up sitelinks, you’ll simply pay the same cost per click as your standard add. And if someone clicks more than one link, Google will treat it as a duplicate (or invalid) click and you won’t be charged again.

How Are They Set Up?

To enable and create sitelinks for your campaign or ad group, follow these steps:

Within Google AdWords

  1. Go to your AdWords campaign.
  2. Click the Ad extensions tab.
  3. Choose Sitelinks.
  4. Next to the Sitelink settings link, click Edit
  5. Create a new sitelink or edit an existing sitelink by clicking it.
  6. Fill out the sitelink text and URL.
  7. The Description field is optional, but recommended.

google adwords sitelinks settings

If you run into any issues, take a look at the AdWords sitelink policies.

Within Bing Ads

  1. Go to your Bing campaign.
  2. Click the ad extensions tab.
  3. Click the Sitelinks Extensions tab.
  4. Click Create.
  5. Fill out the sitelink text and URL fields.

Bing ads sitelinks

Within AdStage

  1. Go to your Google or Bing campaign.
  2. Click the ad extensions tab.
  3. Click the Edit Settings button.
  4. Select the Sitelinks checkbox.
  5. Click +Create a new sitelink.
  6. Fill out the sitelink text and URL fields.

adstage sitelinks section

How Do I Make Them Awesome?

Sitelinks go a long way to help you create richer and more relevant ads. These tactics will make your sitelinks perform even better:

  • Create sitelinks for popular pages that people would want quick access to (e.g., About Us).
  • Create sitelinks for promotions to make updating your ads easier (e.g., Winter Sale).
  • Use sitelinks as an extension of your ad copy by mentioning benefits (e.g., Free Shipping).
  • Create sitelinks for calls to action (e.g., Make an Appointment, Get a Quote, etc.).
  • Set unique URLs for your sitelinks, or else they won’t show.
  • Create as many sitelinks as you can, then review their performance to improve them.
  • Keep the text brief and simple.

Sam Mazaheri

Sam is the Director of Online Marketing at InVision and former Director of Marketing at AdStage. Prior to AdStage, he was part of the AdWords product team at Google, serving as the in-house AdWords expert and advisor to product management, engineering, and UX. Prior to that, he personally managed and grew in-house digital marketing programs with over $300,000 in monthly ad spend.



View Sam Mazaheri's profile on LinkedIn