If you’ve been in the search game a while now, you likely remember when Google rolled out (and ultimately sunset’d) image extensions. These were ad extensions that appeared as a carousel of images around your text ad when triggered in search. Compared to other ad extensions, they only showed very rarely and had trouble really gaining traction, save for larger advertisers like Oakley.
Yet, here we are a few years later and Google Ads has introduced Gallery Ads – which is a very similar concept currently in beta. Gallery ads are mobile-only ads that function much the same as image extensions, except they are ads, not extensions, and your ad account is charged on either a click-through or on viewing of the third image – not just on the click alone. The swipeable image-based ads allow for showing 4-8 images which serve to help advertisers tell a more immersive story about their brand and better connect with the searcher.
Here’s how Gallery Ads work:
When triggered in Google Search, based on a user’s query matching to a keyword in your Google Ads account, potential customers are eligible to see your Gallery ads with up to three of your ad headlines, your ad text description, your URL and the first image from your “gallery”. If interested, customers can swipe to view more images, which appear individually, or they can tap an image on their mobile device screen to open the full gallery. The full gallery shows all images vertically, taking up the full face of the user’s mobile phone, where they scroll through all of your other images.
When someone views your Gallery ad, your Google Ads account will be charged if they click through from the ad to your website or view the third image in your gallery. If both actions are taken, you’ll only be charged once.
Gallery Ad Requirements:
- There are three headline fields for Gallery ads, but only the first is required. They can be 30-characters long each. Multiple headlines can appear next to each other and will be automatically separated with a “|”
- The display URL is automatically pulled in using the domain of your Final URL.
- Just like with the current search ad formats, you can add up two optional Path fields, at 15 characters each, to show after your display URL and give the user an idea of where they’ll be taken on site.
- You can upload a maximum of 8 images, and a minimum of 4 to make a Gallery ad. Images should have an aspect ratio of 1.91:1, a minimum resolution of 600×314 pixels and a maximum file size of 5MB.
- There are also 70-character long text descriptions that go with each image. These should each be unique and relevant to the image they appear with, along with proper grammar, spelling, capitalization and punctuation. These cannot contain URLs.
- Legal disclaimers are an optional text field for images as well and can be 2,500 characters, but are only recommended if needed.
See if You Have Access to Gallery Ads:
Remember, that Gallery ads are currently in beta (as of the time of this writing, 6/4/19). You can follow the steps below to see if you have access to Gallery ads in your account.
- Sign into your Google Ads account.
- Navigate to the campaign and adgroup where you want to create the ad.
- On the left-hand menu, click Ads & Extensions.
- Click the “+” button, which is typically on the left, under the stats graph.
- If you see the option to add a Gallery Ad, you’re golden! Click Gallery ad.
- If you don’t see Gallery Ad as an option, reach out to your assigned Google representative to ask to be whitelisted for the beta. As a note, your account or agency may have to meet certain requirements to be eligible.
Create a Gallery Ad
- Follow the steps above and once you see the option to do so, click “Gallery Ad”.
- Within the ad template, you’ll be prompted to build a Gallery ad with a final URL, path fields, and headlines. When you are building, you can check the preview to the right to make sure it looks as you intend.
- Click the “+” next to “Add Images” and then select where you’ll be uploading images from. Follow the directions to upload your images and ensure they meet the required aspect ratio.
- Once uploaded, select the 4-8 images you’ll want to use for your Gallery ad and then Save.
- Click “Add tagline” to add descriptions for each image, and if needed, you can add a legal disclaimer in the option Disclaimer field.
- When you are finished entering image taglines and legal disclaimers, click “Done”.
- You can edit parts of your ad by clicking the pencil icon near a specific field.
- When you’re finished, click “Save.” Your ad should be enabled and ready to run if approved.
Have you gotten access to the Gallery Ads Beta? We’d love to hear about your experience in the comments.