AdvertiseadwordsIIYour Google AdWords Quality Score can make or break your Google AdWords campaigns, so how do you improve it?

Are your Google AdWords Campaigns Floundering?

In our previous post, we discussed how utilizing Google AdWords can allow your business to tap into the dominance of Google Search and other Google products and services. We also discussed how Google determines how much the Pay-Per-Click (PPC) rate for each ad and where the ad is placed within Google’s search results through the use of ad word “auctions”. Google understands the profitability of their advertising service depends on users actively engaging their ads through the use of clicks.

The Good, The Bad, And The Ads

If ineffective or irrelevant ads are displayed prominently, users will be much less likely to click on these ads and will eventually tune out and disregard them completely. Google has a vested interest in the quality of the ads prominently posted on their products. To successfully place a high-ranking ad on Google products, including Search, you must prove to Google that your advertisements are successful and relevant. Google determines this through the use of a Quality Score for each keyword, which plays a prominent role in each ad’s “ad rank”. How does an advertiser improve their Quality Scores?

Quality Scores And Keywords

Luckily, Google readily provides each AdWords advertiser access to their Quality Score for each keyword. Simply login to your AdWords account, select the Keywords tab and click the white speech bubble next to a keyword’s status. Quality Scores utilize a ten-point scale, with one being the lowest score. According to Google, the factors that are used to calculate each Quality Score include “your keyword’s past ClickThrough Rate (CTR), the CTR of your display URL, your account history, the quality of your landing page, your keyword/ad relevance, your keyword/search relevance, your geographical performance, and your ad’s performance on a site.”

Past And Future Campaigns

By breaking down these factors, we can determine that Google is mainly interested in the success of both your previous and current campaigns, the quality of your ad copy and your “landing page”, which refers to the page on your website or other online property serving as the destination of a user clicking on your ad. Google asks itself, “How successful is this advertiser? Is their ad relevant and useful to our users? Finally, will the ad take our users somewhere compelling and relevant?” By improving these elements of your campaign, you will subsequently improve your Quality Score.

Make Them Count

To begin, it is important to make sure your ad copy is worded to maximize its quality and relevance. Make sure that your ad is specific enough that it is instantly relevant to the user’s search query. If you are an electronics retailer bidding on the keyword “high definition televisions”, the ad copy should refer specifically to the high-definition television brands and models you carry, not generic copy referring to the range of consumer electronics products you carry that includes high-definition televisions. Use strong “call-to-action” phrases. Last but certainly not least, be sure to include the actual keywords in your ad copy!

Keep URL’s Short

A simple way to improve your Quality Score is to ensure that your display URL, or the URL displayed on your ad, is effective. Keep the URL short and direct. Consider whether or not the URL should include the name of your product or service or a business or product slogan. Which would be more effective in enticing users? Don’t use a slogan consisting of more than two or three words!

Landing Pages

Next, consider where your ad is “landing” users. Many advertisers and companies grossly underestimate the value of landing pages. In fact, many ads simply funnel users to the company’s homepage. Creating effective landing pages can greatly improve both the success of your campaigns and your Quality Scores. It is important for landing pages to “carry on” where the ad copy left off. You have complete control over the content displayed on your landing page, so invest the time and resources needed to create compelling and interesting landing pages for each campaign.

Know Your Geography

Finally, it is important to ensure that you are targeting geographical regions effectively. If you operate a small business, it may be ineffective to target all users who utilize a keyword in your state. However, if you operate a business that is not confined to a specific geographical region, it is important to research where your customers are located and advertise in those regions. If your business and/or product or service is new, research into your competitors’ markets may be necessary to optimize your geo-targeting.