Google AdWords Sunsetting Expanded Text Ads

May 18, 2022

Question: What’s Google’s favorite time of day?

Answer: Sunset!

If you know, you know. If you don’t, we got you. Google has announced they will be sunsetting Google Analytics Universal (3) and Google Adwords expanded text ads in Search Engine Marketing. 

We’ll be covering what to expect in the sunset of expanded text ads in this announcement and you can find the GA information on this blog here.

Current Types of Search Engine Marketing Ads



Expanded Text Ads (ETAs)

These types of ads have (3) headline fields and (2) 90-character description fields and a display URL. 

Responsive Search Ads (RSAs)

These types of ads are created with options - up to (15) headlines with 30 character limit and up to (4) description lines with 90 characters each. These headlines and descriptions are combined in different ways to different users and Google’s algorithm begins to ‘learn’ the highest performing combination and starts to push those. 

Dynamic ads

These types of ads are the most controlled by AI. They dynamically generate copy from your website that best matches the user’s search query automatically creating a higher optimization and relevancy score from Google. 



This announcement has come with mixed responses from industry leaders - including our own. 

Digital Media Director, Michael Neumann, says of the switch, “It makes me nervous anytime Google forces the adoption of a machine learning tool. RSAs perform similar or better than ETAs now that it has had time to learn but that wasn’t the case in the beginning. So while it takes time to learn, we will most likely see the learning phase play out in lower numbers than we’re used to seeing”. 

“Reporting will also be something to keep an eye on,” Michael continues, “This push will definitely make creative testing harder. Right now at least, Google isn’t giving performance information segmented by asset or combination (or headlines and descriptions that are performing best). That being said, I do believe Google is promising for it get better”. 

What To Expect With The Forced Adoption of Responsive Ads

A possible drop in impressions: while AI learns what works and picks up speed 

Less human control: this is just another move on Google’s part to push machine automation over human operation

Limited reporting: see note above 

Better outcomes: in experimenting with responsive in the last year, we have seen some accounts really take to it resulting in a lower CPC due to better result rates 

And we predict a force to dynamic is coming in the next year or so. 

If you're a nerd like us and want to explore this topic further, you've got options! Use our chat, subscribe to our newsletter, or give us a shout!


Written by Michael Neumann and Alex Hanes
Share Article

digital marketing google search engine marketing sem