Working with Dynamic Text Replacement

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The world's most successful marketing campaigns have one thing in common: They're personalized. 

Prosperous marketing campaigns are specific to their target audience and use message matches to assure their customers they've reached the best destination for their needs.

This is where Dynamic Text Replacement (DTR) packs a punch.

DTR is a feature that lets you tailor the text on your landing page to match keyword parameters, pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns, and other sources, using external variables you can attach to the URL. 

Unbounce Dynamic Text  + Google Ads Keyword Insertion = Better Conversion Success!

This article will cover the following:

  • What is Dynamic Text Replacement (DTR)?
  • Why You Should Use DTR
  • How DTR works with Unbounce and Google's Dynamic Keyword Insertion
  • Understanding & Analyzing your URLs & DTR
  • How You to setup DTR in Unbounce

What Is Dynamic Text Replacement?

Dynamic Text Replacement is a real-time solution that allows you to add personalization to your landing page content using different custom keyword parameters. 


Why Should I Use DTR? 

Dynamic Text Replacement provides great advantages for ads! Personalization is a great way to combat the ‘banner blindness’ that now afflicts most consumers due to being constantly besieged by ads. By personalizing your ads to exactly what your customer is looking for, you can improve your click-through rates. 

The process of personalizing your ads and your landing page to present the same message to the customer is called message match. Unbounce allows you to add DTR across many facets of your landing page in addition to your GoogleAds keywords insertion, which means you can message match across ALL of your campaigns, and not just in your advertising! 

You can use DTR with:

  • Email Campaigns
  • GoogleAds
  • Facebook Ads
  • Bing Ads

We’ll describe how to set up DTR in your landing page, build your own URL containing DTR for use on email campaigns and other Ad streams,  then show you how to set up your keyword insertion in Google Ads. 


How does Unbounce’s DTR feature work with Google Ads and Keyword Insertion?

Creating your Ad Group & Keywords

Creating your ad group & list of relevant keywords in Google Ads first is a great way to start setting up dynamic text replacement in Unbounce. When building your ad, try to choose keywords that will best match what your page visitors will search for in hopes that they’ll land on your page from an ad click.

Each ad group contains a keyword list focusing on popular terms relating to your landing page - you can decide what keywords to associate with your ad group. The text or content that will change dynamically on your page relies heavily on the list of keywords your ad group from Google Ads, so choose wisely!

To help you get started, Google provides some documentation on essential tips for building a keyword list and getting started with ad groups work

After selecting keywords, you will then need to decide on a match type for the keywords you’ve chosen. Do consider how targeted you’d like your ads to be, as Google has three different match types available.

Using Dynamic Keyword Insertion 

Since we’ll want to show your potential visitors a more targeted & relevant ad based on their search query, we’ll want to use dynamic keyword insertion! Dynamic keyword insertion (DKI) works to update your ad’s text dynamically to include a keyword (from your list) that’s most relevant to what your users searched for.

Suppose users click on your landing page URL through an ad. Dynamic text replacement leverages the inserted keyword by dynamic keyword insertion to replace the text on the landing page too!

Google Ads’ Dynamic Keyword Insertion + Unbounce’s Dynamic Text = Better Conversion Success!

Analyzing your URLs

DTR can be a bit complicated concept to explain, so we’ll use an example diagram of a URL and go through each part of the URL:

Structure of Final URL in Google Ads

Display URL once text changes dynamically & and in browser

[landing page url]? [parameter] = {KeyWord: Default text}

[landing page url]?[parameter]=value

visit.puravista-retreat.com?destination={KeyWord: Resort}

visit.puravista-retreat.com?destination=Getaway

  1. The Landing Page URL is the URL of the landing page where you’d like to add DTR.
  2. The Parameter is a specification of your choice; the context of that URL parameter will determine what text will be replaced and dynamically updated once DTR is set up in Unbounce. You can choose your parameter when setting up your final URL in Google Ads
  3. The KeyWord refers to what will be referenced to dynamically update your ad text & include one of your keywords that matches a visitor's search term. 
  4. The Value is the keyword that you’ve chosen to replace dynamically according to the customer’s inputted search terms.

    You’ll also need a default value or default text if your visitors inputted search term doesn’t match the keywords from your ad group list (i.e., when the keyword from your list does not replace text). In this example, Resort is the default value.
    If a potential visitor completes a search term using one of the keywords from your ad group list, DTR will work to replace this value with the visitor's search query. 

Example: Dynamic keyword insertion & DTR

Using the above URLs as examples. Let's look at an example to explain how DTR and your Google Ads setup works. 

Using this landing page, let’s say I want to word "Retreat" within my hero section to change dynamically depending on what my page visitor searches for and once they’ve clicked on the ad:

“Pura-Visa-Retreat-hero-section”

To start, I’ll create my ad group and setup my chosen keywords in Google Ads:

ad group Pura Vista Travels
keywords "Resort", "Getaway", "Holiday",

Next, I’ll want to create my URL to use for my email or ad campaigns. I will need to include a parameter within my final URL, which will act as an anchor to help dynamically change the text on the landing page to our chosen values and keywords.

Do note that the URL parameter remains static (i.e., the term destination does not change). The context of that URL parameter will determine what text will be replaced and dynamically updated once we set up DTR in Unbounce. For this example, I'll use the term destination as the parameter when creating the final URL.

We'll then set up the final URL. The final URL is the URL of the landing page your visitors will land on after they’ve clicked on your ad. After setting up dynamic keyword insertion in Title Case for my text ad, here’s how the final URL for the ad appears:

visit.puravista-retreat.com?destination={KeyWord: Resort}

If a potential page visitor performs a Google search for “holiday getaway,” and they find and click on the ad, the final URL of the ad would dynamically replace {KeyWord: Resort} with the keyword that matched the search term, “Getaway.” The final URL of your ad will change from:

visit.puravista-retreat.com?destination={KeyWord: Resort}

to

visit.puravista-retreat.com?destination=Getaway

When a visitor clicks on this ad, they will be taken to the display URL above with the keyword inserted as the value for the destination parameter, which will replace any DTR elements on the landing page targeting the destination URL parameter.


If I’ve set up DTR on the word Retreat within the Unbounce builder, this text will change dynamically on the page:

“final-url-on-landing-page”

And that’s it! Users redirected from my ad will see the term Getaway instead, making the ad more relevant to the user’s search term and dynamically changing the text on the landing page.

Setup Notes

Creating your list of keywords, ad groups, dynamic keyword insertion, and building your ad’s final URL must be configured outside Unbounce using Google Ads. You can set up Google Ads Keyword Insertion by following the Google Ads guided method to set up keyword insertion for your ad text.

What you can do in Unbounce is add DTR to your landing pages, popups, and sticky bars to dynamically update text once users land on your page through an ad click.

Adding DTR to Your Landing Page Copy, Buttons, Popups, and Sticky bars

DTR can be added to your Unbounce landing page in three different locations: 

  • Title, Keywords, and Description
  • Landing Page Copy
  • Buttons

Ideally, you would use the same URL parameter in all three locations for the ideal message match. Follow the steps below to learn how to add DTR to each of these three locations.  

  1. Navigate to the landing page, popup, or sticky bar in the Unbounce Builder where you’d like to add Dynamic Text Replacement.
  2. Design and edit your landing page, popup, or sticky bar to your specifications. 
  3. Follow the steps below to add DTR to your text or button:

To Add DTR to Text

  • Be sure to double-click on the text that you’d like to make dynamic with DTR.
  • Highlight the specific word or phrase where you’d like to apply DTR.
  • Navigate to the Properties section on the top right side of the builder: “action-tab-dtr”
  • Then, head over to the Action editor tab. Scroll down to the Dynamic Text Replacement section and click on the Dynamic Text button: 
    “action-editor”
  • A new dialog box will appear. 

Add DTR to a Button

  • Click on your button once, then click the Properties section on the top right side of the screen: “dtr-button-properties”
  • Scroll down to the Button Label section and highlight the word or phrase you'd like to make dynamic, then click the Dynamic Text button:
    “apply-dtr-to-button”
  • A new dialog box will appear.
  1. Within the new dialog box:
    • Add in the URL Parameter field with your chosen parameter from your final URL in Google Ads.
    • Fill in the Default Text field with the default text or value you’d like to show on the page. This can be the same default value you have set up for your Ad. 
    • Select a Text Style from the drop-down menu:
      “setup-dtr-in-builder”
  2. Click the Save Dynamic Text button in the bottom right corner once complete.
  3. Save and Publish/Republish your page, popup, or sticky bar.

Once you’ve published (or republish) your page, popup, or sticky bar, you'll be able to change the text dynamically via URL parameters.

That’s it! You’ve built a Google Ads advertisement that works with our Dynamic Text Replacement feature.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I test whether Dynamic Keyword insertion and Dynamic Text replacement work on my landing page and ads?

Because the text on the landing page dynamic changes based on how visitors interact with the ad, the only way to test the dynamic keyword insertion and dynamic text replacement is by testing out a search query and clicking on your ad directly.

Can I use DTR to get more ad clicks?

Each time a user conducts a search query, your ad will enter an auction to determine whether it will show visitors. While DTR can help you create more relevant ads, there is little guarantee or assurance that DTR will ensure your ad gets chosen first. Take a look at Google’s documentation explaining auctions for more information on how ads are selected.

Can I create my Final URL in Unbounce?

Building your ad’s URL takes place within Google Ads - completely separate from your Unbounce landing page. You can set up Google Ads Keyword Insertion by following the Google Ads guided method to set up keyword insertion for your ad text.

Helpful Resources

Basic Tips for Building a Keyword List

Set up keyword insertion for your ad text

Using Keyword Insertion in Google Ads

Display Values in Your Form Confirmation Dialog (Using Dynamic Text)

Using dynamic text in Bing ads