If you use Adwords and you haven't yet rewritten your ads to take advantage of their expanded text ads, you might end up kicking yourself if you put it off any longer.
Expanded text ads launched in the summer of 2016 on the Adwords platform. I immediately put them into use on a high-volume account and had a massive increase in CTR (Click Through Rate) across the board. Sometimes I had twice the CTR with expanded text ads. Sometimes I had more. I don't think we had one campaign that didn't see a lift when using them.
And they seem to convert at least as well. I've said before that you want to pre-qualify visitors as much as possible with your ad so you can actually avoid clicks from those who aren't a good match for what you offer. With expanded text ads, you're both more visible AND able to better qualify visitors because you can tell them more about what you offer.
As you can see in the image here, I tested several expanded text ads vs. older ads, both with plenty of impressions; both over the same period of time; all falling very close to the same average position on the page. The CTRs on the expanded ads blew the rest away in every case.
So get onto those ads. And if you're a small business who needs a hand with your Adwords account, I welcome you to get in touch. Most agencies won't work with small accounts, but I enjoy working with small businesses and can lend a hand whether you need one-time setup help or ongoing management of your account.
I remember a teacher pointing out when I was just a kid that using "xmas" to stand for Christmas pretty much removed the whole point of Christmas. It removed "Christ." So when I shorten it, I've always had the habit of using "Cmas" instead. Makes a lot more sense to me.
So when I tried running some Google Adwords ads related to Christmas products, I wanted to use Cmas ... but knew that most people would probably better recognize Xmas. So I decided to try both and see which one got a better click through rate, or CTR.
I ran two ads that used Xmas in the headline, and two identical ads that used Cmas in the headline. Of course you cannot perfectly control all other variables in an outside setting like Google Adwords. The position of the ad is one such factor; the other ads or organic listings running nearby could also alter someone's actions; etc.
So to some degree, I have to consider this lack of control in the results, but I'll point out that the best performing ad in terms of CTR was only in the second best Average Position (4.8), and was nearly in the same position as two other ads (5.1). The worst performing ad Averaged a Position of 4.3. On that factor alone, you would expect it to have more visibility and therefore more clicks.
In fact I found what you might have predicted: Xmas performed 92% better than Cmas in terms of CTR (if you combine the two ads for Xmas and the two for Cmas). And this was verified as statistically significant through this handy calculator, which I recommend you use if you are running your own tests like this, lest you assume valid results too soon.
Now this isn't to say that Cmas wouldn't outperform Xmas in another setting, for a different audience or whatever. But this is just a simple Christmastime example of why it's important to run different ads in your campaigns and see where you get better results ... as long as you have enough search volume to legitimately test them.
One caution: remember that CTR isn't always your test subject. If I offer a "Free Science Fiction Book" in my ad, I might get a lot more clicks than if I tell people the book costs $12.95. But if the book does in fact cost $12.95, all the "free book" clicks (a high CTR) would be useless and a wasted investment; those clicking on the $12.95 ad (a low CTR) would be much more targeted to actually coughing up money for that book. In short, not a bad idea to weed out the wrong audience with your ad; save money on those clicks for a better audience!