5 Different Ways To Approach Sitelinks

By Kristina McLane | @Hanapin | Account Manager at Hanapin Marketing

Sitelinks are pretty great. They help our ad rank, improve click-thru-rate and give us a little bit more space to talk about ourselves. Anyone, who writes ads, understand that sometimes hitting that 35-character limit before you can squeeze in a call-to-action or feature can be frustrating. This is where sitelinks can come swoop in to help us! They obviously cannot change the 35-character description wall, but they do give us an extra 25 characters to play with.

In Google, it is recommended to have six sitelinks running for desktop and four for mobile. While we are given 25 characters to fill for each sitelink, shorter sitelinks at 18-20 characters have been seen to be more effective for desktop and even shorter ones work better for mobile. Bing gives 35 character total, but similarly recommends shorter sitelinks. As I said earlier, sitelinks are nice to have around, but deciding how to fill them should take some time and thought. While a well thought out sitelink isn’t equivalent to a well-written ad or a killer high-converting keyword, they still are a valuable asset and should be treated as such.

When approaching sitelinks, a good place to start is to think about what traditionally works well in the campaign’s ad copy. If a particular call-to-action has worked previously or a feature attracts more conversions, this is where we would want to start and expand on ideas from there.


  1. Tell Me More Information: 

Here is another place to list your additional benefits and features that weren’t able to make it into the actual ad copy. If you have special deals, no booking fees or anything additional about the product that is important to making the decision, a sitelink could be extra space to fill with these features.

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 2.11.02 PM

Although they might not click on the actual sitelink, it could directly affect the click-thru-rate for your ad.


  1. Don’t Forget Call-To-Actions:

 While someone, who is looking for clothes or shoes, knows that they are shopping, reminding them is never a bad thing. Call-to-actions are effective in ad copy and effective in sitelinks. Tell the searcher what to do and maybe they will listen.

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 1.51.46 PM

Adding call-to-actions could be as easy as taking your different products and adding “Shop” like is shown above: easy and repetitive, but also effective. Simple call-to-actions that directly relate to the goal of the searcher is what makes a good call-to-action and as a result, a good sitelink.


  1. Know Your Consumer and What Else They Might Buy:

Depending on the industry and what you are trying to accomplish, this can means lots of different things to lots of different people. However, the idea the same thing: you want them to bundle or you want them to buy this instead. If a particular item complements another product or if you are offering great deals on something completely different that could tempt your customer, this is a good way to do it. The ad is still going to speak directly to what they were originally looking for, but it gives you a chance to cross-sell or direct them elsewhere.

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 2.06.27 PM

If you sell the toys and The Lego Movie is coming out and your average customer loves The Lego Movie, that’s a big deal! If you know something appeals to your audience, even if it doesn’t directly relate to the original search, this is your opportunity to appeal to them on another level or catch their attention.


  1. Build Trust:

Testimonials, case studies, affinity partners or success stories are all great options to prove your worth. Anything that builds trust through social support is a good way to speak to any natural distrust of a great deal.  Proving that other people have believe and trust in you is a good way to catch attention.

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 1.50.33 PM


  1. Give Me Some Direction:

It is agreed that a relevant landing page is considered best practice for ad creation. Giving some additional direction to the searcher can be useful particularly when trying to determine how to approach the broad keywords that exist within an account. If I searched for “furniture”, but was l actually looking for something more specific, these sitelinks below speak to me more than general sitelinks about the company or specific case studies.

 Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 1.52.27 PM


This is by no means a complete list or a top rated list. This is just a list of five of the million different things that we can do with sitelinks. Like with writing ad copy, everyone has their own idea about what works best and it is going to vary between campaigns and account-to-account. The important thing to do is to test your sitelinks and see what is best for you.