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Quality Score

Adwords Quality Score – Why Should You Care?

There are two key reasons why you should care about the Quality Score of your ads. First, the top spot, at the very top of Google searches, is reserved only for ads that have high Quality Score. If your ads have a low quality score, you will only feature to the right of the organic search. Second, the average cost per click is determined directly by the quality score. If you go from a quality score of 2 to a score of 10, your cost per click will reduce by 80%. This means that over the course of a campaign you could increase the number of clicks to your website by five times!

Quality Score – The Basics

Your Adwords Quality Score is calculated every time your keyword matches a search query. That means a new quality score is calculated for every search. The core components are:

  • The historical clickthrough rate (CTR) of the keyword and the matched ad
  • Your account history, which is measured by the CTR of all the ads and keywords in your account
  • The historical CTR of the display URLs in the ad group
  • The quality of your landing page
  • The relevance of the keyword to the ads in its ad group
  • The relevance of the keyword and the matched ad to the search query
  • Your account’s performance in the geographical region where the ad will be shown
  • Other relevance factors

Based on this there are several things you can do to improve the quality score of your ads.

Increase your Click Through

The click through rate for your ad is compared to the CTR for other ads in the same position, so position is irrelevant. There are several factors that will affect your click through rate.

  1. Relevancy of ad to keyword – the more relevant your ad is, the more likely a user is to click
  2. Competitiveness of ad to other ads – if you advertise coffee cups at $5 per thousand, and your competitors are at $3, you are unlikely to get many hits
  3. Compelling ad copy – people see these ads all the time, if you ad looks like every other one on the web you are not going to be noticed
  4. Interesting offer – if you are in a very competitive market, having an offer that is interesting, and might attract attention, can sometimes be better than just beating your competitors on price.

We ran through some ideas for improving your Google Adwords in another post, but basically you want to create lots of ads, and be as specific as you can with each of them. If you have the chance to list some specifications in your ads, do it!

Improve your landing page

There are three key guidelines that Google offer for improving your landing page, and they are basically the same as the webmaster quality guidelines.

  • Be original in your content
  • Be transparent and honest
  • Be easy to navigate

From these we have set out the following steps for improving your landing pages;

  1. Make sure you are consistent in your use of keywords. If you are selling one particular product on a page, make sure that the same name is used throughout.
  2. Make sure that keyword is used in your ads, and is used in your target keywords. The more narrow/specific you can group the keywords, the better.
  3. Use your own unique voice when writing information about the product. Don’t use the same old information that the vendor uses.
  4. Use images as well as copy. The more product specific images you can have, the better.
  5. Keep the design neat, if you use other advertising make sure it is minimal. Don’t use pop ups or other annoying nags.
  6. Make sure you have your telephone number, address, privacy policy and terms clearly marked on the page.
  7. Direct your ads to the most specific landing page you can. If you are advertising for coffee cups, but offer three different sizes, it is better two have three different ads, with three different landing pages. However, it is not the end of the world if you want to send customers to your category page, as long as the category page is specific to one type of product.
  8. Make sure it is clear what the price is, and how people can check out.
  9. Make sure your website runs like a modern site. If it takes a long time to load, or is hard to navigate, that can be a negative factor.

Improve the relevancy of your ad groups.

Google Adwords allows you to have ad groups under each campaign. It is highly recommended that you use as many of these adgroups as you can, to group specific target keywords together. If you are a plumber, group the keywords into specific parts of your service, like bathroom renovations, gutter cleaning, hot water boiler installation etc. The more specific you can target, the better.

  • Use negative keywords to filter out words that are not relevant. For instance if you are targeting the keyword phrase “used books” but you only sell paperbacks to backpackers, you might want to filter out “rare” as a keyword.
  • Select longer, specific, keywords, rather than broad ones. “Wholesale bathroom taps Manly” is going to work far better than “plumbing” or “plumbing supplier”. You might get more clicks overall for the broad keyword phrases, but your quality score will go down, and the cost per click will go up. Not only that, but you will have more clicks coming from people that are really not that interested in your service.
  • Make sure you have specific landing pages for specific ad groups, where there is consistency throughout.
  • Make sure you use keywords in your ads consistent with the target keywords.

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