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Understanding Google’s Quality Score

Silverback Strategies

What is quality score?

Quality score is essentially Google’s scoreboard for your Adwords account. It also is a good indicator of the overall strength and health of your Adwords account. The higher your quality score (on a scale of 1-10) means that Google’s system thinks that your ad, keyword, and landing pages are relevant and useful to a users query.

How does Google determine quality scores?

  1.  Keyword relevance – If a high number of users click on your ad from a certain keyword search term, Google will find it relevant and award a higher quality score number.
  2.  Ad relevance – Ad’s are vital because attaining high click though rates will eventually result in better quality scores. You can have a relevant keyword to the query searched but a poorly crafted ad. Ads need to assist the keywords and get the users to click.
  3.  Landing page relevance – The landing page is the least important of the factors determining quality score. Though still an important part of the equation, Google has said that it doesn’t score landing pages on a 1-10 scale, but rather a yes or no scale. In other words, the landing page is either good or not good.
  4.  Time – When a new keyword is added to an account, Google gives it a quality score based on historical data. Once that keyword begins accruing statistical data, the quality score is likely to go up or down. So if your new account or new keywords seem to low quality scores – don’t worry too much. Give it a little time and you will probably see the scores rise.

Why is quality score important?

Simple: the higher your quality scores, the better your ads will rank, and the lower you will pay for clicks. For example – a keyword with a quality score of 3 might pay $5 for a seat in position 2, while the same keyword (in another account) with a quality score of 7 could pay $4 for the top position.

Google has made it clear that they want its users to have the best experience possible. Therefore, the quality of the keyword-ad-landing page will often beat out the highest bidder.

How can I improve my quality scores?

Start with the structure of your account. It is important that your ad groups are tightly themed and focused on one particular product or service. For example if you’re selling mens running shoes, do not have an ad group with keywords like kids shoes, womens tennis sneakers, and mens work boots. The mens running shoes ad group should contain keywords such as mens running shoes, running shoes for men, and best running shoes for men.

Make sure your landing pages contain the keyword you are bidding on, as well as call-to-actions and offers you are using in your ads. So if your ad looks like this:

                                                                   Men’s Running Shoes
                                                                   50% Off Men’s Athletic Shoes.
                                                                   Order Online for Free Shipping!

Be sure to include content on mens running shoes. And don’t forget to mention the 50% offer. If your landing pages are not specific, consider building out a custom landing page for each ad group.

Constantly monitor your campaigns and cut out the keywords and ads that are not performing. Pause keywords which have low click through rates, use negative keywords to make broader terms more relevant, and test ad copy to ensure you are serving ads that attract the right users. Keeping your click through rates high is imperative to achieving higher quality scores.

Though quality score isn’t an exact science, it is an important aspect to running a successful and efficient Adwords account. If your ad groups are tightly themed, keywords match the ad copy, and your landing pages have relevant content – you’re on the path to high scores!