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After reading a few articles here and there about using Emojis in Google Adwords headlines, I found that it was a good topic to discuss in my blog post after this 3 day weekend.

Who never used that little smiley face in a text or email? Or that little heart to send to your loved one?

No one!

We all use them, but only in the private sphere. We keep them as a way to communicate to our friends and family.


The use of emojis in search ads is actually not a new trend. This article from 2012 is making reference to those, but back then, they were only displayed on mobile phones.


How to use Emojis?

There is no secret as to how to add an emoji in your text ad: copy and paste! Simple!

All you need is a website displaying all the emojis (such as, select the one you wish to add and copy and paste it into your ad.


It seems a bit paradoxical to be able to use them as advertisers are not even allowed to have more than one exclamation point… Needless to say some ads actually get disapproved while trying to post texts with emojis, but some get through approval!


Why should you give it a try.

The range of emojis is also very wide. Whichever industry you’re in, you can always find one that fits your products. Selling bamboo products? Go for the panda! Electrician? Go for the light bulb! There is only so much you can do.

Larry Kim, founder of Wordstream and MobileMonkey, in his post about emojis, compares the results of 2 ad variations in Adwords, one using emojis and one standard with no emojis. In his analysis, he does notice a difference in performance.


As you can see in Kim’s results, the number of clicks, the CTR and the average position are better for the ad with emojis.

Ads with emojis might attract the users as it can make the brand look more friendly and accessible. I believe it is a great way to raise brand awareness also. Those ads really get more attention on the condition that your products are actually relevant of course.


Why you should not.

It may seem very obtrusive to insert emojis in your ads though. Imagine 11 ads on your Google search results page, each having 2 emojis in the headline… You see what I mean?

While companies just try to get some attention and to stand out from the other ads, the users could perceive it negatively.

All in all, you can always experiment and have 2 variations of your ads with and without emojis and see which one performs better.


Keep in mind

If you’re looking for Brand awareness or you are selling products and services that are meant to be entertaining and fun in everyday life, it’s a good thing to try.

But if you’re in an industry that requires more research from the users and your products or services are of a more serious matter (such as a law firm, or insurance), it might not be a good idea. You want to look reliable and serious in what you do!


Would you be willing to try it? Have you tried it? Let me know if this is something that appeals to you!


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Share your opinion

4 Responses

  1. Hi Elodie. Wow! I had no idea you could use emojis in ads. Depending on the context and the advertiser goal, might be just the item to lift CTR. To be used sparingly, I think.

    On another note, there was an interesting study done on the impact of emoji on road signs. If a driver was over the speed limit, the digital road sign showed a sad face. Apparently this was more effective at stopping speeding than the threat of a big fine.

    • Elodie Bonnamy says:

      Hi Chris, thank you for sharing this and mentioning the use of emojis on road signs, I remember seeing road signs with smileys on the roads in France, and they apparently used those in the areas that were more prone to accidents and speeding!

  2. Is this still working for anyone? As of this morning, AdWords won’t let me save ads with emojis. Kicks them back for having excessive punctuation.

    • Elodie Bonnamy says:

      Hello Brian, thank you for your comment.
      I have been reading a few updates here and there yesterday and it appears that this is a failure in Google’s approval system, hence why some ads get approved and some don’t.
      If you really wish to add emojis in your ads, I suggest you give it another go (but be careful not to be flagged!) as I would assume Adwords will fix this ‘issue’ rather rapidly.

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Emojis In Ads… Is It Really A Thing?

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