Image extensions are an exciting way to make ads stand out at the top of the Search Engine Results Page (or SERP). Results have already shown that users engage with these ads at a higher rate than with standard text ads. But while image extensions have promise, there are still a few factors to consider when implementing.
Choose campaigns carefully: Image extensions will only serve when an ad is in absolute top of page position. So, consider implementing image extensions on campaigns that are optimized for top of page impression share, since these campaigns will be most likely to serve image extensions at a higher rate. Additionally, image extensions are currently only serving on mobile, so consider implementing them on campaigns that perform well on mobile devices.
Consider which products fit the format: In order to see the best performance, enable image extensions for products that can be easily represented with visuals. Image extensions still serve below Product Listing Ads, so they offer another good opportunity to grab a user’s attention at the top of the SERP.
Gauge your client’s comfort with dynamic image extensions: Google has encouraged advertisers to opt in to dynamic image extensions, which allow Google to pull images directly from the advertiser’s site and even show up on desktop. These perks mean that dynamic image extensions offer increased reach for advertisers, but they also mean that advertisers have less control over the images they serve. If you do opt in to dynamic image extensions, work with your SEO team to ensure that images on your site meet the proper specs, and consider adding image alt tags or schema to help Google pull the most relevant images.
Pitch image extensions as an exciting, free new feature: Image extensions don’t require any additional funding, and they could even help lower costs in the long run by increasing quality score (with a higher CTR). When proposing image extensions to clients, it may be beneficial to have a few campaigns or products in mind that they could use – these would be good campaigns to use for initial test-runs, to gauge performance of the new extensions within your account.
Requirements & Best Practices
- Aspect ratio: 1x1
- Minimum: 300x300
- Recommended: 1200x1200
- Max file size: 5120 KB
- File format: PNG, JPG, static GIF
- Image safe area: Situate important content within center 80% of image
- Prioritize ad groups that are optimized for absolute top of page impression share, because image extensions only serve for ads at absolute top of page
- Provide at least 3 images per ad group
- Certain image types are not supported: GIFs or moving images, collages, low quality images, images with overlaid text or overlaid logos (text and logos that appear in the original image are OK)
Standard Image Extensions (Advertiser provides images)
- Step 1: Navigate to the extension creation page, and select image extensions
- Ads & Extensions tab -> Extensions -> ‘+’ Create extension -> Type = Image Extension
- Step 2: Select campaigns
- Google ads will ask the user which campaigns should be enabled for image extensions
- Step 3: Provide images – select one of the two following options
- Create New: choose from one of the below options to create a new image
- Scan website – Google suggests images from the advertiser’s website
- Upload – Images can be uploaded from your computer
- Recently Used – Select from previously used images
- Use Existing:
- Select images that are already being used as an image extension on another campaign or ad group