For more info on different kinds of AdWords extensions, check out our Retailer’s Guide to AdWords Extensions.
When you’re talking about AdWords app extensions as they pertain to retail advertisers, you’re probably talking to a small crowd. App extensions (and apps in general) are relatively unexplored territory for even many major retailers. A quick series of searches in the Apple App Store revealed that Target, Best Buy, Amazon, Cabela’s, Gap, and Newegg have apps for their store. I already have the Amazon app, so this ad above ^ is somewhat of a fail, especially since the link takes me to the app store and doesn’t just open my existing app. However, improvements to app extensions were a major (and arguably underwhelming) part of the much anticipated AdWords Innovations announcements on April 22 this year.
The reality is that if I never manually searched for these major retailers in the App Store, I would have never known that Gap, Target, etc. even had apps. If you put all this money into app development, why not feature it on Google? Apps give retailers the unique opportunity to remain top-of-mind and find a home where their shoppers spend a huge chunk of their time – their phones.
Clickthroughs on the app link will cost the same as a click-through on your site link, so if you do have an app, it’s worth your time to run a test of the app extension and see if the value of a click-through to download your app is in line with a click-through to your site.
How to Add App Extensions
A couple criteria for app extensions right off the bat:
- An app that is currently available in the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store
- The package name for your app, which typically looks like the reverse of your store’s domain name (ex. com.retailer.mypackage for a package named mypackage created by the app developer at Retailer.com)
- Your app store URL
1. Add an App
2. Fill Out Your App Info
After saving, the app extension should take a little bit of time to verify. I selected Mobile for Device Preference because if I know my app is very functional, if not more functional than my mobile-site, and has great ratings in the Play Store, then I feel confident in prioritizing my app extension over others when it comes to mobile devices. The opportunity to live on a consumer’s phone is too great to pass up, especially if you’ve already sunk a lot of time and resources to develop your app.
Of course, if after a month or so the historical data doesn’t support you continue showing the app extension, it’s probably better to prioritize a different ad extension instead.
Check back for more setup and strategy best practices for other AdWords Extensions, or view our overview of the 9 different AdWords Extensions here.