October 19, 2007
All week we have focused on how to improve your Quality Score, how to recognize “myths” and important factoids that lead to a solid understanding of Quality Score. Today’s post is the fifth and final post in our 5-day series, and it is the culmination of a week’s worth of knowledge!
In days gone by, PPC bidding wars were commonplace when trying to achieve top positions in competitive markets. As a result many advertisers were forced to pay outrageous CPCs and had no choice in the matter. Google AdWords’ Quality Score and its dynamic formulas turned the PPC world on its head. This monumental shift allowed advertisers the ability to increase rank without necessarily out bidding the competition.
Here are 4 basic tips to use Quality Score as a tool to beat your competition:
- Optimize, Optimize, Optimize: It is important to plan the strategy for beating your competition on solid groundwork. Your account structure, and more importantly keyword organization within ad groups, is of utmost importance when optimizing for Quality Score. Precisely grouping relevant keywords together with the right ad texts and landing pages will help you avoid losing your keywords! Optimizing correctly will undoubtedly improve your campaign and ad group level Quality Scores. When these pieces are in place, your account level score will improve as well. And if you think about it, having campaigns and ad groups that are easily navigated can economize account management time giving you an edge.In another move towards transparency, Google this week announced (and released) what is called the Keyword Analysis Page.
The Keyword Analysis page is a new feature within AdWords that provides information and recommendations about a keyword’s Quality Score. For example, the Keyword Analysis page can tell an advertiser that their keyword’s Quality Score is low because of landing page, ad text, or poor performance.
With this new level of information, it is easier than ever to use Quality Score to beat your competitors!
- Relevant Ad Texts: If you’ve completed step #1 correctly, creating relevant ad texts should be a piece of cake. When you have ad groups with 5-10 similarly themed keywords, the ad texts should practically write themselves! Keywords in your ad copy will immediately and dramatically improve your click-through-rate, which as we all know is a direct piece of the Quality Score formula. Focus on Quality Score, but remember your end-user. Make it accessible not only to Google, but to your customers, too. Give them no choice but to click your ad.
- Relevant Landing Pages: Much like ad texts, landing pages have a similar impact on your Quality Score. You can organize your account to perfection, you can write amazingly clear and relevant ads, but if your landing page doesn’t contain the keyword – it’s all been for naught. This is an exercise in remembering what is at the core of Quality Score: improving the user’s experience. If your landing page doesn’t contain the keyword that got the user there in the first place, you’re doing something very wrong (not to mention you just wasted money on a click). Creating relevant landing pages has a two-fold effect. One, you’ve tied your keyword through the ad text to your website. But much more deeply than that, you’ve enhanced the likelihood of the user completing the desired action (signing up, contacting, buying or whatever it is you do)!
- Bid Smartly: Now that your well oiled PPC machine is zapping the competition, it’s time to take stock of your bids. By accurately executing steps 1-3, you’ve positioned yourself to start saving money. All of these actions, if done right, will allow you to pay lower CPCs for higher ad ranks. Constantly review your max CPCs in relation to your average CPC and average position. Monetize on your Quality Score success. Incrementally begin lowering your bids to test what ad position that puts you in. Use the Ad Preview Tool to see where that positions you against your competitors. If you can continue to lower your max CPCs while still besting your competitors – do so! Saving money per click will eventually allow you to drive more click traffic within your budgetary confines, and drive more customers away from your competition.
A lot of search marketers regard Quality Score as something to be feared, even loathed. Regardless of the naysayers, my hope is that you’ve learned something about Quality Score this week. I always like to think of knowledge as power. And what’s more, hopefully you’ve discovered a new tactic or realized a new way to think about your account! Using Quality Score as a tool in the management of your AdWords account can and will help you beat your competition. Best of luck!
Was today’s post helpful? Check out even more helpful information with PPC Hero’s Google Quality Score Handbook!