Basics for Improving Your Google AdWords Quality Score

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Digital Marketing January 10, 2017

Basics for Improving Your Google AdWords Quality Score

Even though SEO—when done right—delivers quality results, one of its weaknesses for businesses expecting immediate sales is that it takes time. And while it may not pay to wait months for results to come through via pay per click (PPC) advertising, this method is one of the quickest ways to digitally drive revenue. Through PPC, a business creates Google search ads and whenever someone clicks, you pay.

There are many networks to choose from when it comes to launching a PPC campaign, but one of the most popular is Google AdWords. And while this platform is a great place to start, one aspect that’s important to pay attention to when putting a campaign together is the quality score.

The true value of this feature is constantly debated with some arguing that it’s a way for Google to make more money off their clients, forcing them to optimize towards a metric that doesn’t actually affect much. In this article however, we’ll explore why quality score is important for your AdWords campaign, and what can be done to improve it.

The Higher the Quality Score, the Higher the Revenue

InternetBefore making efforts towards improving your AdWords quality score, it’s important to understand why it’s something that would need to be improved in the first place. As Google defines it, the quality score “is intended to give you a general sense of the quality of your ads.” For each keyword in your account, a number from 1-10 is estimated to determine the quality of your ads’ success potential, and the landing pages triggered by them.

With this assigned score, the cost and effectiveness of your ads are impacted within each search campaign, similar to the way a credit score can reflect upon your standing with a bank when applying for a loan. How well your PPC ads performs and the amount you’ll have to pay for each click becomes dependent on this score. In short, a higher quality score leads to ads that rank higher in searches and lower costs per click.

How Does Google Adwords Quality Score Work?

According to Neil Patel, the first step in understanding how to make quality score work for your AdWords campaigns is to know what quality score means. And this meaning goes deeper than just what it is but how it works. Once you know how this score is calculated, you can begin to understand how to adjust for it within the ad creation process.

Within an AdWord campaign, ad groups are created with keywords selected to target towards potential customers within each group. The three main keyword types include:

  • SEOExact: Keywords displayed in square brackets i.e. [Google AdWords quality score]. Ads will only show for searches of these exact queries.
  • Phrase: Keywords displayed in quotes i.e. “Google AdWords quality score”. Ads will show on searches that contain this phrase.
  • Broad: Simple keywords displayed without additional punctuation i.e. Google AdWords quality score. Ads will show on search queries that contain the words in any order, including any synonyms.

Quality scores are calculated only on exact match keywords and by each keyword individually. This means that the same ad groups can generate different quality scores. Your AdWords account can also affect the calculation of quality score since Google tracks past ad quality and weighs them in conjunction with current ads being run.

Headline is Essential

Search Engine OptimizationWhen building an ad, one of the most important aspects to pay attention to is the headline. A faulty headline leads to a faulty ad with low CTR. With limited space (25 characters), it might seem easy to create a sensible headline, but consider these tips below:

  • Include your keyword.
  • Utilize sales copywriting best practices.
  • If your headline exceeds the character limit, use a full stop or exclamation point to end the first line after the headline. Google will recognize it as an extended headline and append the description or first line after the 25 characters to your headline.

Focus on Relevant Keywords

One of the worst things you could do to your ad sets would be to bid on the wrong keywords. It may seem like a good idea in the short term, but as can be seen across all areas of marketing, irrelevancy will always come back to bite you in the long term. After all, you want your ads to appeal to those most likely to become quality customers, not just seek quantity. There’s no point in paying for an ad that doesn’t answer the searcher’s query.

GoogleFor example, say you’re running an ecommerce site for cameras. Your website doesn’t provide a blog, but you decide to run ads that bid on the phrase “how to clean a camera lens”. If there’s no page on your website that will provide an answer to that query question, your keyword phrase will be irrelevant and have a negative impact on the quality score.

Provide Answers with Your Landing Page

Similar to the keywords used in your ad sets, relevancy is essential for landing pages displayed on your website. Google wants to ensure that their clients will provide satisfaction to their users. While quality ad and click through rates are a good indicator of this, where users end up afterwards is also analyzed. If a landing page does not meet a user’s expectations or answer their query, your ad campaign may become negatively affected.

When building out your landing page, make sure relevant keywords included in ad sets appear within the page. In addition, make sure there is a clear answer provided based on whatever keyword query you might be bidding on. Page load time as well as mobile responsiveness can also play a part in the impact of your keyword quality as well.

Do you have any other essential tips for improving your Google AdWords quality score? Tweet @MabblyDigital with your thoughts, and we’ll share our favorites!