Quality score: if you’ve ever taken a look into PPC, it’s likely you’ve heard of it.

It’s a rank assigned to any one of your keywords that shows how relevant Google considers your keyword, ad and landing page to be for a person searching for your product, rating it out of 10. Sounds simple, right?

Google calculate the quality score based on a whole bunch of different factors. It’s not as straight forward as using your targeted keyword in your ad; they take into account:

  • The past CTR (click through rate – how often the ad is clicked compared to how often it’s shown) of both the searched keyword and display URL.
  • The quality of your landing page
  • Your account’s history.

But that’s only a small list of what Google considers when deciding the quality score, and most of the factors that Google looks at are kept a secret.

Better yet; the quality score is recalculated every single time someone does a search which displays your ad.

Not so simple after all.

Why Is Quality Score Important?

Having a high quality score gives you a number of advantages.

Your ad will appear in a higher ad position, as you might expect given that Google considers it more relevant. A top position means more space on the page for your ad and that it will be more obvious to searchers. Higher quality score means your ad is also likely to show up more often, and you’ll also pay a lower CPC (cost per click).

On the other hand a lower quality score will see your ads appearing less often and in lower positions. You’re less likely to get clicks, and when you do it’ll cost you a little more than if you had a better score.

All in all – it’s in your best interests to strive for a higher quality score.

How Can I Find Out What My Quality Score Is?

You can find the quality score of any given keyword by going into the Keywords tab. You’ll see all your keywords appear; look under the Status column and you’ll see a speech bubble next to each keyword’s status – click this to see its quality score.

quality score in adwords

Alternatively you can change your column layout to show quality score. Below the Keywords tab there is a Columns buttons, click this then Customise columns.

Customise columns

There are a lot of possible columns to add – click on the Attributes list to find Qual. score, click Add then Apply to add this to your column list.

Add qual score from attributes list

You will now see the quality score alongside your other metrics like clicks and impressions.

Don’t forget in both cases, this is just an average of your recent quality scores – your quality score is calculated whenever a user searches Google.

So How Can I Increase My Quality Score?

There are no set rules to increasing quality score. Like I said before, there are a massive amount of contributing factors that go into deciding it – the specifics of which Google keep to themselves.

There are, however, a few best practices that help towards a good quality score. Namely, focussing on relevancy of your keywords and the ads served up when someone searches for them. Splitting closely related keywords into ad groups and writing specific ads for them is going to help – including that keyword in the ad is going to help even more.

Just as important is the relevancy of your chosen landing page, send people to the page for the product or service they want rather than straight to the homepage. Your landing page really needs to be super relevant to what the ad is about – your quality score will stay low and you are unlikely to get many conversions otherwise, as you’ll just be leaving people lost.

There’s a much larger guide on quality score over on the PPC Hero site if you’re interested in finding out more.

If you’ve got any more quality score advice, let us know in the comments below!