Adwords Quality Scores 101

AdWords Quality Scores 101

Quality scores dramatically impact ad effectiveness and their cost per click. If you’re trying to get the most out of your pay per click (PPC) ads, understanding the value of your quality score is essential. Basically, it has nearly the same power as your credit score; it is the determining factor on how much you pay for each click and whether your ad is performing as successfully as you’d like.

Since quality scores hold so much weight in the realm of online marketing, we hope to break them down into easily digestible explanations. Ideally, you will walk away from this article prepared to understand the components of your score, check it and enhance it.

Components of Your Quality Score

Quality scores are broken down into a number of components, which can be overwhelming and exasperating if you don’t know what they are. Therefore, allow us to alleviate some of that burden here. These are the components of your quality score:

  • Previous AdWords account performance
  • Landing page relevance and quality
  • Ad text relevance
  • Click through rate (CTR)
  • Keyword relevance to its ad group
  • Geographic success in the region targeted
  • Performance on targeted devices


Unfortunately, no one knows what portion of the score each of these components constitutes. We do know, however, that CTR is a crucial factor. Therefore, we advise that you keep an eye on your score regularly. So, how do you do that?

How to Check Your Quality Score

Now that you understand how important your quality score is to your ad price and its successful reach, it might be beneficial to know how to check your score. There are actually a few ways to do that. The first step though is to go into your Keywords tab. From there you can run a keywords diagnosis. All you have to do is click on the white dialogue bubble next to each word.


Additionally, you could enable the quality score column. This is also done under the Keywords tab. In the statistics table, look for the Qual. score column. If it’s not there, you can add it by clicking on the drop-down menu labeled columns. Then, select customize and attributes and then add Qual. scores. Make sure you save it so that it’s there for good.




Benefits of a Good Quality Score

Since a consistent CTR is critical for achieving a good quality score, you should understand it’s benefits. When Google sees that those who are exposed to your ads have a tendency to click on them, they reward you. Some of these benefits, or rewards, include:

  • Keywords first bid estimate – The quality of your ad directly effects these estimates and determines whether or not your ad will show up on the first page of a search.
  • Higher ROI/lower CPC – Since a higher score enables you to pay a lower cost per conversion (CPC) your rate of return on investment (ROI) increases!
  • Eligibility to take part in ad auctions – Lower scores inhibit your hopes for successful bids in ad auctions.
  • Ad rank – This determines where your ad will appear in paid search results. The better your quality score, the higher up the ladder your ad goes and the less it costs to do so.

Effective Ways To Improve Your Quality Scores

There are different actions you can take to help improve low keyword quality scores. By simply moving keywords into new or different adgroups, changing the text ads so they’re more relevant to the keyword, or even just removing keywords with extremely low click through rates all help improve quality scores within your adgroups.

You really want to make sure your adgroups have a small number of keywords that are all closely related with text ads that are written specifically for those keywords. If you have 10 or 12 keywords in an adgroup and two of the keywords have very low ctr’s while the rest of those keywords maintain a high ctr, peel the low ctr keywords out and place them into an adgroup of their own with ads written specifically for those keywords.

Low ctr, low quality score keywords are toxic to the rest of the adgroup they’re in. By pulling them out, this will improve the quality scores on the other keywords in the original adgroup; and if the ctr improves for the keywords in the adgroup, the quality scores should also improve.

Everything You Ever Needed to Know about Quality Scores

Everything you ever needed to know about quality scores in a limited space has been thus far provided for you. If we were to truly sum it all up, a good quality score is based on ad relevance and the number of people actually clicking on it. Ultimately, that score will make or break your return on investment because it determines the CPC for each of your ads as well as their placement on search result pages. Therefore, it is definitely in your best interest to utilize the quality score column in your keywords tab. Always monitor your investments!