Google rolls out lead form extensions in beta

A new feature to maximize your conversions


Google advertisers can benefit from a new feature: lead form extensions. Still in beta, it gives online marketeers additional opportunities to maximize their conversions.

There are already several dedicated formats to get a maximum of conversions on mobile devices. Call extensions and call-only ads are among the most popular. But with an ever decreasing attention span it is in every one’s benefit to keep the conversion funnel as short as possible. Google Ads lead forms allow a prospect to send a form directly from the ad without even visiting the advertiser’s website.

The new extension follows the same logic as other extensions: you only pay when someone effectively clicks your ad. Where and when Google decides to show the lead form extension is up to Google itself, except that it will exclusively be shown on iOS and Android devices. The arguments to insert it are also similar: it allows your ad to stand out visually. It also fits into Google’s philosophy to put more attention on mobile traffic.

Limitations to the new format

Not all accounts or campaigns will be eligible to use the new extension. Google limits the scope and naturally Google’s ad policy is applicable. In order to use a lead form extension:

  • It has to be a search campaign.
  • The account mustn’t be in a sensitive (sub)vertical. These are the usual like alcohol, gambling, healthcare etc…
  • Your business name in the lead form has to be accurate and represent the advertised business.
  • You mustn’t use promotional language in the business name field of the form.
  • Insert a url to the privacy policy on your own website.
  • You have to be in a country where the extension has already been rolled out.

How to insert a Lead Form extension to your ad

Inserting the new extension is very straightforward. Log in to your Google Ads account and select the account, campaign or ad group where you want to insert the extension.

The very first time you create a Lead Form extension, a pop-up will appear asking you to accept the Terms of Service.

Next, you can choose from a predefined number of call-to-actions.

Fill out the headline and your business name. You are a bit limited in characters here: 30 and 25 respectively. You can let yourself go in the description where you can write up to 200 characters.

Choose from a maximum of four fields you want to include into your form. These are set. No possibility to add some yourself. Finally you have to provide the link to the privacy policy on your website and a background image for the form as well.

The final step is to write a submission message. You can again choose form a number of pre-defined call-to-actions and you can provide a url to your website.

How to measure Lead Forms as conversions?

This is where things are becoming a bit less user-friendly to say the least. When someone clicks to open the lead form, this will be counted as a lead form click. If the form is effectively sent, it will be counted as a lead conversion. But at this moment there are only two ways to extract the content of a sent form:

  • By downloading a .csv-file. It is important to keep an eye on this because you can only download leads of the last 30 days.
  • Using a web hook so you can insert the forms directly into your CRM. However, the documentation on this topic is very limited as long as this feature remains in Beta.

Moreover, lead forms aren’t entirely new either. Google already launched very similar features with Lead Capture Forms back in 2010 and with Cost-per-lead ad formats in 2011. Neither of these initiatives turned out to be viable. It will be interesting to see if Google can make it work this time. In the meantime, you should definitely give this a shot.

Posted on November 17, 2019 by , last modified on November 17, 2019

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