Written By: Kerri Koncius
Okay, so you’re ready to start your first Google AdWords paid search campaign. Great! You’ve got your landing pages ready to go, your ad copy written, and your budget nailed down. Now all you have to do is bid highly on the keywords you want to target, and you’ll show up at the top of the results, right? Not so fast…
There is another piece of the AdWords puzzle that is incredibly important, yet widely unknown by those outside of the search industry. That piece is called Quality Score, and impacts not only what positions you show up in and how often, but how much you pay per click as well.
Google defines Quality Score as “an estimate of your ads, keywords, and landing page” and claims “higher quality ads can lead to lower prices and better ad positions.” It takes into account the relevance between your keyword, ad, and landing pages, as well as user experience.
The reason for this measure is that once upon a time, you could just pay your way to the top of Google results with a high bid. You could rank prominently on highly searched keywords without having anything to do with those terms. This led to users having poor experiences and not getting what they were searching for. Quality Score ensures that an ad for a dentist’s office won’t show up on a search for “Disney World,” no matter how much that dentist is willing to pay to target that term.
So how can you set your business up for high Quality Scores, low cost-per-clicks, and effective paid search campaigns? Here’s how:
- Don’t bid on keywords that aren’t relevant to your business
- Write compelling ad copy that encourages high click-through-rates
- Ensure that users won’t be surprised when they reach your landing page, that you are giving them exactly what they were searching for
The bottom line is that you need to make sure that your keywords, ads, and landing pages are all relevant to each other. This can be easier said than done, especially when you are a small business owner, responsible for many different facets of your company. Fortunately, there is a lot of help available, from webinars and whitepapers, to professionals that can set up and maintain campaigns for you. Whether you choose to give it a go on your own or enlist some assistance, if you keep relevance and quality in mind, you will be setting your business up for paid search success.