OK, first a disclaimer: if I had to guess, I’d say that the majority of performance boost from the contest I’m discussing comes from the improved headline that front-lines the savings. See for yourself:
So, yeah, if 70% Off is a key selling point on your offer, then moving that claim up to the headline is a good idea, and probably accounts for a majority of the 44% increase in Click-Through Rate that the ad achieved. But we’ve covered and emphasized this tip a lot lately, so I’m going to talk about the other major element at work in this ad/contest.
Today we’re going to talk about Unverified vs. Unverifiable Claims
See, because PPC Ads are so excruciatingly short, limited as they are to 95 characters and a URL, they represent one of the few occasions in all of copywriting were unsubstantiated claims are not only OK, but often advisable. If you have “Unique” designs or “High Quality” Items, it actually helps to say so in your PPC Ads, even though you can’t hope to PROVE those claims within the ad itself.
Readers will be encouraged by the claims and will generally click through to your Website in order to check it out for themselves and to see what kind of proof and evidence you’re willing to present once you have the space, bandwidth, and multi-media abilities offered by a Website (instead of text ad).
But there is a difference between a claim that is as-yet-unsubstantiated and one that is so entirely subjective that it could never be substantiated. And that’s the difference between unverified and unverifiable.
In today’s contest you see that difference in each ad’s first line of copy: “Modern & Durable” vs. “Fabulous.” Whether a decor is modern or not is easily verified by simply looking at it — and most searchers would be happy and fully confident in rendering a judgement on that, after they’ve clicked through to the Website. Durable is a little tricker, but it can still be substantiated by copy that details the build and material quality of the decor, as well as by warranties and guarantees of durability and satisfaction.
Now compare that to “Fabulous,” which is entirely subjective. Anything could be claimed to be “Fabulous” by the store. Not only is it unverified within the ad, but it is rightly seen as unverifiable by the searcher.
So the tip to take away from the Boosters is to use unverified claims, but to steer clear of unverifiable claims.