March 10, 2008
Today, I will not be discussing certainties. Usually, we prefer to write articles backed by concrete statics, historical performance, and an in-depth knowledge of pay-per-click. However, my post today will be most speculative than usual since some of the details are still filtering in to us. PPC Hero’s duty is to make sure that you are aware of everything going on with pay-per-click and when it comes to your Google Quality Score, we want to keep you as informed as possible.
Google has add an new metric to the AdWords Quality Score: landing page load time. There has been quite a bit of discussion within the forums about this new information, however, here is the information you need to know in a nutshell:
- This element of the Quality Score does not enhance your overall score; it can only negatively effect it. What I mean by this is that your overall score does receive any kind of bonus for fast load times; you only receive negative marks for slow landing page load time.
- We are uncertain of what a “good” load time is, versus a “bad” one. The faster, the better.
- To get a little insight into how Google will be judging your load time, here some information directly from the source (Google):
The load time will receive one of two grades. If it’s graded “This page loads slowly,” your landing page quality and Quality Score will be negatively affected. If it’s graded “No problems found,” your landing page quality and Quality Score will not be affected.
You’ll see the number of redirects the user is taken through after clicking your ad. Typically, the more redirects there are, the slower the load time.
We’ll report the site’s average load time.
- We’ll provide a comparison of the load time for your site versus other sites in the geographic area. Note that your load time grade is determined relative to the average in your geographical area.
Summary and what to do: Just make sure that your landing pages are clean and simple and easy to load. Don’t bog them down with complex graphics or information. Here are some tips to make sure that your landing pages are as search engine friendly as possible (from Google):
- Use fewer redirects.
- Reduce the page size by using fewer, smaller, and more highly-compressed images.
- Do not use interstitial pages.
- Minimize the use of iframes on your landing page.
- Contact your webmaster or webhosting provider to discuss other ways of improving your website’s load time.