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Google Forces A Call Extension Change

Google Removed the Useful ‘Click to Call’ Option

For businesses where calls were a major source of leads, Google AdWords offered a Call Extension option for all search campaigns.  Here you’d see a phone number instead of the traditional headline and call straight from the search results page.  This was fantastic, especially for businesses that were worried about losing people on their sites.

It was good for AdWords agencies that had clients with outdated sites.  Here you could circumvent the site and still get the lead for your client.  For companies it offered a chance to speak to the customer directly and overcome any objections.

But this has changed.

When setting up Call Extensions previously you’d see the option: Show the following links: for “Both my website and the phone number” and “Just the phone number” has been removed.

Here’s proof in pictures!



The option is completely gone.  Maybe Google is trying to make life easier by narrowing down your choices?

So What’s The Default Setting Now?

With those 2 options removed, all Call Extensions are auto-migrated and by default are set to show “Both my website and phone number”

This simply means the ad Headline will only be headline text link (No more option for the Headline to display as a phone number if “Just the phone number” option was previously selected)

On mobile phones there will be a Call Extension Button on the bottom right of the ad.
mobile eg

And on desktops the Call Extension Number will be displayed on the right of the ad (Except if it is a Call Only Campaign, which only serves on mobiles).
desktop eg

How Will This Change Impact Your Previous Settings?


Google has made it simple, whether you’d like it that way or not. ALL previous settings are automatically set to show “Both my website and phone number”.

You won’t see a difference in historical stats & data. All previous call details data are still accessible. (Call details such as: Call start/end time, Duration, Caller area code, Call type/source)

The key takeaway – Call Extensions are now defaulted set to show “Both my website and phone number“.

Want campaigns where ads would display your phone number instead of a headline?

We miss those call extension options too.  Google now wants you to set up a “Call Only Campaign” if you want the ad to only display a phone number to call.  Read more about Call Only Campaigns here

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