By Emma Welland

Google have recently launched a new beta - Offer Extensions! These are the first step in driving online traffic into other channels via promotional marketing.

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It’s February, Christmas has been and gone and sales are phasing out – how can retailers pick up sales? Google have recently launched a beta called Offer Extensions.

Understanding Offer Extensions

Offer extensions are Google’s new way of incorporating multi-channel promotions in to the PPC world. These allow you to drive traffic from search into your stores via promotions. How do they work? Offer extensions are another form of plus box that appears underneath your advert, in a similar way to product extensions.

When a user clicks on the plus box the offer is revealed, and an action can be taken by a user for example they can print the offer, email the offer to themselves or recieve the offer via SMS. When a user actions the offer (e.g. printing) the advertiser is charged like a click on the advert.

The offer has to be redeemable via 2 methods, so this cannot be used just to promote online voucher codes, a user has to be able to redeem the offer by another method as well for example in store or phone etc.

Google's US Case Study

So far, I have yet to see an offer extension in the UK, but Google have provided a case study from the US where Adidas trialled this via mobile:

“In their ad, the company offered customers 15% off purchases made in an Adidas store of $75 or more. Interested users could store the offer either via email or SMS. In addition to the coupon, the ad also provided a phone number and map of a local Adidas store, giving consumers all they would need to go in-store, redeem the offer and make a purchase. With a click-through rate 28% higher than their past mobile advertising, the mobile Offers Ads campaign doubled in-store coupon redemption and increased the average in-store order value.” (Google Mobile Blog)

Example of Offer Extensions:

Use it to your advantage

This seems like an exciting opportunity to use online marketing to drive footfall into stores or online purchases, particularly in a low sale time. Adidas’s use of the tool, shows the future of online retailing, providing the customer with all the information they could possibly need to make a purchase. I suggest this is going to be one of many tools that Google develop, to incorporate both online and offline marketing over the coming months.

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