Get ready for changes to how your display URLs will be capitalized. If you are used to changing the display URL in your AdWords ad variations to get the attention of people searching for a specific term, you might be interested to know that the AdWords team has decided to display the domain portion of the display URL in lowercase letters for all ad variations. If you have ads with a display URL containing capital letters, these will soon automatically be changed to lowercase letters.
So what will this look like?
The example on the left show what you have previously been allowed to do in AdWords and on the right you can see how the ad will start appearing in the coming week or so.
Does this change also apply to sub-domains in the display URL?
Yes, the change will also apply to display URLs that contain sub-domains. For example, if we have Canon.CameraShopSite.com, soon it will be displayed as canon.camerashopsite.com
The good news is that the portion corresponding to sub-directories can still be capitalized and use dynamic keyword insertion. For instance, the link Canon.CameraShopSite.com/Digital-Camera will now appear as canon.camerashopsite.com/Digital-Camera
Do I have to change my display URLs?
No, you don’t have to make any changes to your ad variations because they will automatically be changed for you.
The bad news is that if you don't have additional information in your display URL, different to the domain (e.g www.site.com) your destination URL will look plain compared to other ads that use additional keywords within the destination URL (e.g www.site.com/KeywordSearched).
Why has capitalization of display URLs changed?
The AdWords team has said they "...found that consistent display URL casing leads to better ad interaction rates".
The official blog post announcing the change also indicates that Google is keen for people to start testing variations of their landing pages and driving general website improvement. In other words, it's time to start using Google Website Optimizer to improve your post-click conversions and visitor experience.
Our advice on the new AdWords display URL capitalization:
Keep an eye on the performance of your ad variations during the next few weeks, if Google says it leads to "better ad interaction rates" we could all see an increase in clicks and CTRs (Click Through Rates) for our ads.
If you see a negative impact on your campaigns, create new ad variations, keeping in mind the restrictions for capitalization under the destination URL. Remember you can still add keywords after your domain name in the display URLs and of course use Google Website Optimizer to improve the performance of your landing pages.