Should You Add Prices To Your Google Ads Listings?

Something that I haven’t really seen much written about is whether or not you should actually add the price of the products/services to your Google Ad’s listings, so I wanted to write a brief article on it.

If you’re not familiar with how Google Ads works, basically it’s Google’s advertising platform that charges you whenever someone clicks on your ads. Since that’s the case, ideally we want to make sure that we weed out as many “tire kickers” as we can from clicking our ads that will never in a million years buy from us.

One way that we can help to pre-qualify clickers is by adding a price to our listings just like below (excuse the crude Photoshop)

So the above is an example of the same Google Ad listing, however one has a price included while the other does not. Notice we are trying to advertise our chicken cookbook that we want to sell, we aren’t spending money on ads trying to teach the whole world how to cook chicken for free!

So which ad would theoretically work better? Unfortunately this is a “it depends” type of question, but I want to show you the calculations behind it and how you can use it for your own Google Ads campaigns.

So as you know Google Ads uses something known as “Quality Score”. This is a scale from 1-10 that’s based around user experience factors including landing page experience, ad expected CTR, and ad relevance. All these combined gives you a “Quality Score”, and based on how well you score Google determines how much you’re going to pay per click, where your listing shows up, and how often in comparison to your competitors. But so I digress.

The main point is that while adding a price to our Google Ads may seem like a great way to filter out some junk traffic, it should be obvious it will also tank our ad’s CTR, which in turn will result in a drop in quality score. And when your quality score drops, you end up paying Google more per click (those bastards think of everything).

Remember our interests and Google’s are diametrically opposed. Google wants everybody and their grandmas to click on your ads since they get paid per click, so if your ad’s CTR starts to drop, Google is going to want more money to show it.

So the only real way to know whether adding a price to your ads is a good idea (like everything else) is to run a test. For example using our above chicken cookbook example we could get the below:

We see in the above example, adding a price doubled our cost per click from $0.50 to $1.00, however the conversion rate also improved where we are actually paying less per CPA. So in this hypothetical example, adding a price worked for us as even though our cost per click was higher, we got rid of a lot of freebie seekers, and our conversion rate was decent as well.

However in contrast there will be times like the below example:

In this example we see that our cost per click (CPC) actually tripled from $0.50 to $1.50 and with the same amount of conversions as the first example, we see we actually pay a higher CPA in this scenario when adding a price to our ads ($15 vs $12.50).

Obviously these numbers could change depending also on the conversion rate. Using the CPC figures from the first example, maybe you find that adding a price doesn’t improve your conversion rate enough to offset the higher CPC Google is charging you. So if we only made 7 sales vs 10 sales, our numbers would look like below:

Again you can see depending on your conversion rate and how much you pay per click the numbers change, and this is going to determine whether adding a price to your ads is a good strategy or not.

Something you also have to consider is volume. When your ad CTR and quality score drops, there is a chance it can drop too far to the point where your ads aren’t getting served very much at all. So maybe your CPA is better by adding a price to your ads, but your overall daily profit is lower due to the lack of volume. Again something else you need to think about.

So I hope the above got you thinking a little bit about how to structure your Google ads. It’s definitely worth experimenting to see if your CPAs improve or tank miserably by adding a price to your listings. In my personal experience it’s about 50/50 when it comes to success/failure, but anyway you need to do your own testing and find out if it will work for your niche.

Richard Yoshimura

Entrepreneur. SEO Consultant. Marketing Enthusiast. I'm here to help you build better websites that make you more money.

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