For businesses who are looking forward to creating the best PPC, the Quality Score is criteria that allows you to be competitive. It determines the cost of your Adwords campaign, how effective it is and how much success it gives your website. Now for the problem: what is it really? How do you maximise it for yourself?
What is Adwords Quality Score?
The gist of Quality Score is as it says on the tin: it is a combination of different metrics that Google uses to push advertisers to make the best, most relevant ads and content. The more relevant and valuable your content is, the higher the QS is.
If you think you’ve heard this before, you did. It’s the very foundations that search engine optimisation or SEO stands on. This is one of the reasons that anyone who has decent knowledge of search engine best practices will find getting the best score important.
But for those who are wondering, why is Quality Score important? There’s a few reasons why you should take this seriously.
The foremost reason you would want the best Adwords QS is because it directly impacts your cost of the campaigns that you are in. It determines your cost per click (CPC), lowering it the better your score is. The higher scores that you get, the cheaper the costs are – allowing you to have a longer, more cost-efficient campaign.
In addition to cost, the score determines how you rank in the Google Search Network. In fact, Ad Rank’s formula is Quality Score multiplied by Your CPC Bid. What this allows is for small budget advertisers to be able to compete on search rankings with other bigger budget companies with lower overall scores.
In summary, getting good scores is desirable for two things: a strong ad rank and a cheaper CPC.
Factors For a Great Quality Score
Just like SEO, there’s a number of factors that contribute to a good Quality Score. These factors include keyword relevance, click through rates (CTR), strong landing page experience and historical performance. These provide different types of effect.
Optimised Keyword Relevance
Keyword relevance is one of the first things you would want to look at. Google always wants to make sure that you use the most relevant and contextual keywords that properly refer to what the searcher needs.
The idea of relevance is to make sure that people find what they need from your keywords, punishing the ones that don’t accurately portray the needed context for the phrase and rewarding ads that accurately provide information for the intent.
You would also want to make sure to organise them properly – organising them to become an effective ad group that laser targets a niche campaign. This is also the reason why you don’t want too many broad phrases, but rather smaller, more targeted groups.
Where you can, use the negative keywords listing to remove any phrases that are not relevant to your intent.
Strong Click-Through Rate History
Depending on who you ask, the click-through rate or CTR is probably the most influential or one of the most influential factors that can improve your score. This is due to the fact that it’s the metric that tells Google that people want your ads and they’re useful to searchers.
CTR is the easiest to improve because all it needs is one thing: make the ad copy valuable to your audience. This means using the proper words to entice your audience, be straight to the point and be as helpful as possible.
Make sure that your search phrases, your ad copy and your landing page message match. You need to make sure that if people search, for example, “seo agency hire Brisbane”, that they will be sent to a landing page that tries to convince them to hire the help of an SEO agency located or services Brisbane.
You would also want to make sure your landing page is well designed, easy to navigate and is optimised for conversion. At the end of the day, Google wants to help people find what they need; they also want to charge you more quickly with a higher CTR and what you should get out of it is more conversions. No conversions = no value for you.
Historic Quality Score is a problem that you might face if you’ve had your ads for a long time and only recently learning how to optimise your Adwords.
The issue is that Google remembers each and every QS you have ever gotten and the improvements (or lack thereof) that you’ve done. This means the lower your historical scores are, Adwords will most likely penalise you for it and pull down your future scores even further.
This is also true for new accounts, as Google would rather trust advertisers who have already spent more and performed more in their system compared to the ones who just made new accounts.
Much like SEO, you would need to wait for time and start with the right foot from the beginning. If you’re disciplined enough and do all the best practices prescribed, you’ll set a good precedent for your future campaigns.
Excellent Landing Page Experience
Having an awesome landing page experience is essential in your QS, due to the fact that Google wants your visitors to have a great time browsing your landing pages.
We’ve talked about landing page essentials before and we can write as many details about it as possible, but it all boils down to relevance. You would want to make sure that the landing page, again, matches the message in your ad that brought the visitor in the first place. You are expected to have done everything to optimise your pages for human use.
It’s critical to make sure you have optimal landing pages before you advertise, which includes:
- Unique, plagiarism free content
- Easy to navigate with great UI and UX experience
- Fast page load speeds
- Fully working internal and external links
- Mobile-ready where possible
If the landing page is bad, you can expect very low conversion rates. Again, low conversion rates mean a waste of time, money and effort on your side.
Why You Should Not Worry Too Much About Quality Score
At the end of the day, Quality Score is a multiplicative component of your Ad Rank, with the bidding being an equally important component of you getting the best results in your Adwords campaign.
Since Ad Rank determines you position in the SERPs, you would want to make sure that you do good both on the QS and the bidding part – something we’ll teach you on another lesson. Bidding strategies are complex and would require a strong understanding of your Adwords Console.
What you want is to act on what your data tells you. A lot of people I know get hung up worrying that their QS will be so low that the historical QS might penalise them long term.
Just make sure to maximise the quality of your landing pages and make sure the messages of your ads, landing page and everything in between match.