Written by John McElborough on 29 April, 2014
Have you noticed social extensions quietly vanishing from your Adwords interface?
The social extensions option which used to live under the Ad Extensions tab in the Adwords interface disappeared during the last update. Bemused by the disappearance we contacted Google to find out where it had gone and they confirmed that social extensions had been removed as an ad extension option for all accounts.Social extensions themselves haven’t been removed entirely – they still exist and can be linked to ads organically in a similar way to seller ratings, however you’ll no longer have the option of specifying a Google+ page to be linked to your ads. Or therefore have the choice to not show social extensions if you didn’t want your ads to be linked to your Google Plus page.
This seems like a sensible move as there were no options for where/ when your social extensions would show anyway so its just going to be Google deciding when its appropriate for them to be shown.
If you want to show social extensions with your Adwords ads now the guidelines remain the same, except you no longer have to link your Adwords account with your Google+ page:
- Your Google+ page has to be linked to your website.
Follow these instructions to link your Google+ page and your website, if they aren’t already linked. This will allow social annotations to appear, and it’ll also help your Google+ page and website to be discovered in Google search.
- The domain of your ad’s Display URL has to match the website URL that you’ve added to your Google+ page.
- For example, George’s ad that has a URL of happysnacks.com/low-carb will match with a Google+ page that displays the website URL of happysnacks.com because they share the same domain.
- If you have the same site with different top-level or second-level domains for different countries, contact us and ask us to match these. For example, your ads lead to google.fr and google.co.uk, but your Google+ page displays the URL google.com
- Your Google+ page needs to have recent, high-quality posts and a significant number of followers – meaning a minimum of 100 for most companies.
So if like us you noticed social extensions being removed from your account, fear not, they still exist but you no longer need to do anything to set them up – so one less thing to worry about;-)
Author: John McElborough
+John McElborough is co-founder and MD of Inbound360, a London based PPC agency. John has been building and marketing websites for over a decade and has consulted for some of the UK’s largest brands on PPC and digital strategy. His work has been published on leading industry sites including SearchEngineJournal, Social Media Today and Moz.com as well as his own Marketing For Growth” blog