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Using and improving your Google AdWords quality score

From: Pay-Per-Click Fundamentals

Video: Using and improving your Google AdWords quality score

Google's quality score should be used as an indicator of For example, I had a client that sold a very What this means for you? Quality score isn't everything.

Using and improving your Google AdWords quality score

Google's quality score should be used as an indicator of your keywords performance and your expected performance in the ad auction. But it is a metric that can be taken in multiple ways. The fact that you cannot track quality score progress over time in your account unless you set up something like an add word script to record it daily in a Google spreadsheet makes it a difficult and frustrating metric to base advertising decisions and goals on Additionally, it is technically recalculated on a per query basis, which makes it a bit of a moving target to try and track and follow. Another interesting quirk is that Google often sets a bar on a per industry or per query basis based on historical performance of that keyword in the marketplace.

For example, I had a client that sold a very specific type of feather bed called a bafflebox feather bed. The product page listed it as a bafflebox feather bed. The keyword on the page multiple times in the copy. In the title tag, the ad used the keyword, and the keyword was on the keyword list as bafflebox feather bed in multiple match types with no other keywords in the ad group. Ideally, this kind of setup would produce at minimum a quality score of 7 or higher. I would be expecting an 8 or 9 even. But this keyword and ad group, over the course of 2 months, could not earn a quality score higher than a 4.

After several discussions with Google representatives, and other paid search friends in the industry, it was determined that the industry vertical that this keyword was was not a high-volume, high-performing area. So Google would not be awarding it any higher than a 4 unless something major changed in the amount of search volume or click-through rates. What this means for you? Quality score isn't everything. If you find yourself struggling with quality scores, especially after trying a few of the techniques laid out in this lesson, I would recommend that quality score as a metric takes a backseat to other metrics. And in some cases, disregard it entirely.

At the end of the day, the ideal metrics you should be focusing on should be around conversion rate, cost per conversion Cost and number of transactions overall. If you're doing well, then stick to it. But before we give up entirely, let's walk through a few methods in which you can improve quality scores as it does have it's benefits when it comes to lowering cost per click and increasing impressions rate. Let's concentrate our efforts on the lower end of this scale as the most improvement from these techniques will come from there. Once you arrive in the 7 and above range, it is far more difficult to make significant impacts. So let's say for keywords with scores of 1 to 3, or 4 to 5.

Always move the lowest, least performing keywords into new ad groups. Do not disturb ad groups or keywords that are doing well. Leave them to be to continue performing for you. Separate out any keywords with five or higher into their own ad groups. Consider changing match types. If you're currently using a broad match, change it to a modified broader phrase, and watch the quality score over the next week or so. Delete keywords. Sometimes things were just not meant to be. A keyword with a quality score of 1 or 2, that is not converting, is pulling your entire account down. Kill it, and increase the bid. While this technically doesn't influence quality score directly, it does influence the available funds for that auction.

I recommend increase of at least 25 percent. A bigger move you can make is to break your ad groups out by match type. This is where you need to consider how many impressions you're getting and how to make this decision. If the broad match is getting a thousand impressions a day, an exact is only getting a hundred. Consider breaking them up by match type, so that the more targeted terms in the exact match ad group have a chance at a higher quality score. Add site links. This is a big one. Utilize site links in the ad extensions tab. The CTR of site links is calculated into the overall CTR of the ad, and therefore increases it, and possibly your quality score.

Use at least 4 site links, but not more than 8, and try to make it an even number. I've seen improvements in quality score from doing this overnight. Add negative keywords. Filtering out unwanted impressions, and hinting to Google what your aggregates are not about, helps with the overall quality of the keyword list and can increase quality score. And last, but not least Edit your ad copy. CTR is a huge influence on Quality Score. The higher it is, the better. So if your ad copy is less than 2%, try editing it to include the keyword in the headline, body copy, and/or in the display URL.

Now if you're in the range of 4 to 6 in terms of Quality Score, I recommend moving keywords with lower scores out into ad groups on their own and deleting those keywords first. Next, I will focus on utilizing sitelinks. Adding negative keywords. And focusing on keywords by match type, to give yourself the possibility of increasing CTR, to push quality score those next few slots up. None of these things are guaranteed to improve quality score. Remember, there are no guarantees with PVC. But they all should certainly help. If you find yourself with low quality scores consistently, I recommend looking to other metrics and statistics, as again, quality score is an indicator of performance in adwords auctions, but not at all related to conversions, revenue, or transactions.

If you're doing well in sales or leads, whatever your goal might be, then make that your overall focus, and don't get hung up on quality score.

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This video is part of

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Pay-Per-Click Fundamentals

34 video lessons · 3568 viewers

Elizabeth Marsten

Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 1m 14s
    1. Welcome
      1m 14s
  2. 10m 9s
    1. What is pay-per-click (PPC) marketing?
      2m 2s
    2. Understanding PPC's role in your marketing mix
      2m 12s
    3. Pros and cons of PPC
      2m 30s
    4. Things to know before you get started
      3m 25s
  3. 14m 10s
    1. Creating a Google AdWords account
      5m 56s
    2. Creating a Bing Ads account
      6m 13s
    3. Setting up your account structure
      2m 1s
  4. 19m 32s
    1. Setting up campaigns in your new account
      6m 38s
    2. Choosing geographic targets and location-based settings
      4m 56s
    3. Setting daily and monthly campaign budgets
      3m 52s
    4. Creating ad groups without going overboard
      4m 6s
  5. 18m 32s
    1. Researching keywords
      5m 5s
    2. Selecting keywords
      5m 2s
    3. Selecting the match types for your keywords
      5m 4s
    4. Selecting negative keywords
      3m 21s
  6. 17m 13s
    1. Understanding what makes a good ad
      6m 31s
    2. Writing compelling ad copy
      4m 35s
    3. Testing your ad copy
      2m 49s
    4. Using dynamic keyword insertion in ad copy
      3m 18s
  7. 11m 41s
    1. What is quality score?
      3m 52s
    2. Using and improving your Google AdWords quality score
      4m 50s
    3. Using and improving your Bing Ads quality score
      2m 59s
  8. 16m 2s
    1. Using Google's Display Network
      7m 58s
    2. Understanding the Google and Bing search partner networks and how they work
      3m 51s
    3. Using the Bing Ads content network
      4m 13s
  9. 26m 43s
    1. Reviewing your metrics
      4m 32s
    2. Interpreting results
      6m 7s
    3. Installing conversion tracking
      8m 46s
    4. Troubleshooting common performance problems
      7m 18s
  10. 13m 14s
    1. Using the AdWords desktop editor
      2m 41s
    2. Using the Bing Ads desktop editor
      3m 9s
    3. Tips and tools for using offline editors
      7m 24s
  11. 1m 12s
    1. Next steps
      1m 12s

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