Do you ever wonder how Google decides where they’re going to place your PPC ad on their search engine results pages? Many advertisers don’t realize that Google has a specific algorithm in place that helps determine the placement of PPC ads. Part of this algorithm is your Quality Score. Your Quality Score measures the relevancy of your keyword, ad, and landing page in relation to your customers’ search query. When a customer enters a keyword in the search query that you’re bidding on Google evaluates it and gives it a score from 1-10. The higher your score the more relevant your ad is according to Google, so you guessed it, the better the placement of your ad. So what makes up this score you ask? Well, there are many factors that are considered. For example, the quality of the page where you’re sending customers is a key factor. Is the content on this page relevant to what the user is looking for? Does it have current content and a favorable amount of content? Are there other features on the page, like photos or videos? Your account history is important as well. Google likes to see advertisers that have been in the system for an extended period of time. It gives Google confidence in your company when they see you’ve been around for a while. How’s your click through rate (CTR)? Are your ads getting clicked on a lot or are people bypassing them for your competitor’s ads. A click through rate of 1% or greater is considered good as an industry standard. If you’re seeing CTR’s below 1% on a regular basis Google will not view your ads in a favorable light and your ad placement will suffer. You can work to improve your CTR by running tests on your ads and making sure you have top performing keywords in your ads.
It may seem like Google is using their algorithm and the Quality Score rating to be difficult and to give advertisers yet another hoop to jump through in trying to achieve their PPC goals. However, nothing could be further from the truth. The fact is that Google has the Quality Score formula in place for the benefit of the consumer, as well as the advertiser. Google wants to ensure that users who are searching on their engine are always provided a “Quality” experience. They want to make sure their searches are met with relevant results and the content they need. On the flip side, this also protects the integrity of ads featured on Google, as it prevents advertisers from simply paying their way to a desired ad spot.
If you follow the best practices in creating your ads and keep in mind the main factors that affect your Quality Score then you’ll be on the right track in achieving optimum search engine results.