Best Practices for Improving Quality Score

Melody Park
April 7, 2011

Maintaining a high Quality Score is important if you want to increase quality traffic and reduce costs. Publishers do not give detailed insights on how Quality Score is calculated. However, the publishers do provide some insight on how an online marketer can achieve and maintain Quality Score in their search campaign. There are four simple steps you need to take to bring your search campaign into “Quality Score Success”:

  1. Campaign Structure
  2. Keywords and History
  3. Relevant Ad Copy
  4. Landing Page

Campaign Structure

As a search marketer, it is important to start the process by truly knowing the brand you wish to advertise. This is because having knowledge of the brand will give you clear insight on how to create the campaign structure. Therefore, visit the brand site and learn the business as thoroughly as possible. Once you have clear knowledge of the brand, you will be able to easily categorize your business into separate components. You can categorize in any which way you choose, as long as it makes sense to the business. Once you have determined and broken down the different categories, you can easily create these into campaigns and adgroups within your search account.

Keywords and History

Once you have a well organized campaign structure, it is time to start looking for keywords.

Many advertisers select keywords after observing the campaign structure and making a “best guess” on what keyword will bring in good traffic. Although this method is a good way to start, just doing this will not be an effective way to bring up overall Quality Score for your account. This is because you have no insight on how these “best guess” keywords have historically performed or will perform in the near future. The engines reward accounts with rich historical data by raising overall Quality Score, and it turn, cheaper cost per click and stronger volume. Therefore, it is important that you generate a keyword list with historically high volume keywords. Keyword research is relatively simply due to the many sources available through the search engines. You can easily generate thousands of keywords by simply typing in a “best guess” keyword or the brand website. You can also check to see if any of your keyword considerations have enough historical volume to be qualified for your search account.

Also, it is important that the keywords you select are consistent and relevant to your adgroup. Many advertisers mix a list of unrelated, but high volume terms into an adgroup, hoping that it will improve performance. However, this is detrimental to Quality Score. Make sure that your keywords within an adgroup are related and relevant to the actual adgroup they reside. The key is that the keywords are relevant to the structure and to each other.

Relevant Ad Copy

Having relevant ad copy is just as important as having relevant keywords. This is because users respond more positively to ad copy that is relevant to their searched keyword. Therefore, if you have an account with relevant ad copy, you will see higher overall CTR% for your account. The This is due to the fact that relevant keyword/creative combos is what brings in a high CTR. Engines take high CTR% and relevancy, and use it as an important factor for determining Quality Score.

Creating relevant ad copy is a much more simple process once the campaign structure and keyword lists have been built. You can use these factors as a guide to keep all messaging relevant to your adgroup. Simply view the keyword list for any given adgroup, and use the keyword list to determine the best theme for the ad copy. The key is to create ad copy as relevant as possible to your original keyword set.

Landing Page

Once you have completed building your entire search account, it is time to find the appropriate landing pages.

This is where your knowledge of the brand will come to great use. As you have already visited and learned the website for your brand, you will be able to easily navigate and find relevant micro-pages to use as landing pages. Instead of having every ad default to a generic landing page, it is important to find micro-pages that are closely related to the ad copy and keyword list within an adgroup. The engines want to ensure that advertisers are providing the best user experience, thus making sure landing pages are closely relevant to the ad copy. Therefore, for any given adgroup, use the keyword and ad copy set to determine the most relevant and closely related landing page. This will guarantee a high Quality Score.

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