Business Writing AdviceBusiness, Writing, Advice
ServiceScape Incorporated
ServiceScape Incorporated

The Art of Google Ad Writing: 10 Tips for Increasing Your Click-Through Rate


Marketing is a hard but essential aspect of being a business-owner. Whether you're an author advertising your books or a freelancer looking to market your services, ads can be your best friend—and, admittedly, a little difficult to master. There are a few different platforms you can use to run ads, and today, we're going to focus on Google Ads.

Here, we bring you 10 tips to help increase your click-through rate.

1. Identify your audience

The first step is identifying who you want to see and, better yet, engage with your ad. We probably don't need to remind you that your ad spend dollars are precious, so by identifying and specifically targeting your audience, you ensure that everyone who sees it will in some way be interested in what you're advertising, and the likelihood of them clicking on it and converting to a sale is high.

Google Ads makes it simple to refine your audience's location. If you want to target your ad to just the people who live in the US, Canada, and Australia, you can select those locations. If you want to target people who live in just major US cities, you can choose those too.

2. Identify your keywords

Arguably, keywords are the lifeblood of your ad. They ensure that your ad will be seen by someone who already searching for something related to your product or service, so it's really important you choose ones that are effective in order for your ad to have as much visibility as possible.

For instance, say you've written a YA paranormal romance. Those are all keywords you'd want to choose. Would your book appeal to fans of Twilight? That might also be a keyword you use. Is your audience primarily women? Try including "for women" in your keyword list. Using words that relate to your product—book, fiction, romance, paranormal, vampire—as well as phrases will help your ad be seen by more people who are already interested in what you have to offer. Moreover, it limits your audience to just people who share these same interests, thus allowing you to get the most out of your CPC (cost per click).

3. Clean, concise, interesting copy

A targeted audience and all of the most effective keywords won't serve your ad if the copy isn't intriguing, free of typos, concise, and pointed. You have very limited space for copy, so every single word needs to count. If you're a graphic designer, present your services in the most straightforward language you can. If you can seamlessly and naturally include a couple of keywords in the ad copy also, so much the better. Being as specific as possible leaves no doubt in a potential customer's mind as to what product or service you offer, and, importantly, what you do not offer.

4. CTA

The goal of your ad is to have a customer click on your product or service and hopefully, buy it! Therefore, a call-to-action is possibly the most important part of an ad, because you're telling them what you want them to do. CTA keywords include: "get," "buy," "shop," "try," "click," and "sign up," to name a few. These are the specific actions you want a potential customer to take.

5. Headlines

Headlines are another key component of an effective ad. The customer doesn't see your targeting or keyword list—they see the copy, the headline, and the CTA. Therefore, your headline has to be as strong as your copy. It must stop your potential customer's scrolling and entice them to click on your ad. Often, using one of the CTA keywords we shared in the last tip in the headline is a great way to get straight to the point. E.g., "Claim your free book now!"

Your headline should also mirror the potential customer's end goal. In a service-oriented industry, most customers want a fast turnaround time. If you're advertising graphic design services, for example, your headline might say something to the effect of "24-Hour Book Cover Design!" Something that speaks to fulfill the needs and wants of the customer before they have to ask.

6. Be Specific

Specificity helps further tell the customer what you're offering and, in turn, what you do not offer. Don't simply state that you offer translation services—specify the languages you specialize in. Don't just say you're a romance author—state that you write romantic suspense or historical romance. Being clear and specific about what you're selling allows the customer to make a much better-informed opinion of your product or service, and thus increases the chances of quality leads. If you offer a service with measurable metrics, throw some specific and relevant numbers into your ad. Copies sold, customers served, translations completed, logos or covers or graphics designed. All of these things help support a customer's reason for using your products or services over another.

7. Countdown timers

Google ads now offers a countdown timer that will appear in real-time on your ad and will be seen by customers. Research has shown that loss aversion, or the fear of missing out (commonly known as FOMO) is real, and that on average consumers tend to respond more to the notion of potentially missing out on something rather than on gaining something. By creating some urgency in your ad, this can help increase clicks and conversions. This is an effective tool to use with big sales or specials, but this is also a tool that shouldn't be overused. Countdown timers should be used at strategic times of the year that are few and far between, or else your prospective customers may start to think you're crying wolf.

8. Keep ads current

On the topic of urgency, your ad should have some relevancy of time in it. For instance, an ad that states your book won an award in 2015 probably isn't as exciting as one that states your book won a notable award in the past year (note: only make claims that are true). By including some current metrics and notable occurrences for your product or service, that can boost the urgency around your ad. Readers will be clamoring to read the novel the next hot blockbuster was based on, or the novel that won Best Book of 2019 or that sold a million copies in February 2020.

9. Personalize

Make your ads personal to the customers you're targeting by using words like "you" and "your." Headlines that are focused on you as the business or product, use words like "me," "ours," etc., have been proven to be far less effective than the opposite. You want a customer's business—so they need to know why patronizing your business will benefit them. Occasionally, you can speak to a customer's need and benefit and still highlight some of your accomplishments if they tie into each other, but this requires some careful finessing. Focusing on the customer is always the best bet!

10. Test, test, test

So, you've made sure to properly target your audience. You've selected the best and most effective keywords for your ad. You've made sure your copy is clear, concise, free of typos, and to the point. Your headline will stop scrollers in their tracks. Every tip we've given you has been applied, and now you're ready to launch your ad into the interwebs. The sales should start rolling in, right?


As with anything related to sales, whether or not your ad's clicks will convert to sales ultimately boils down to your audience. You may have followed these tips to the letter and still not gotten a sale. What do you do then?

You tweak your ad, then you try it again. And again, and again, and again.

Testing the effectiveness of your ad is key to refining it to be the most productive and beneficial for your bottom line. You can use Google's A/B testing feature to run two ads at the same time. They might be very similar with only minor differences (that can create major change) or they might be drastically different. Your audiences might be different, or perhaps you're using two kinds of copy. Either way, this is a great tool to make sure your ad is performing the way you need it to.

No matter what you're advertising, there's an art to marketing, proven tactics and tips that help sell your product or service. Marketing is not simple or necessarily cheap, so any tips and tricks to maximize your dollars are going to help you achieve a balance between budgeting and results. We hope these tips were helpful, and remember to test out your ads until you find the best one that works for you!

Get in-depth guidance delivered right to your inbox.