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What Are Quality Scores In Google Ads?

By Leadhub
Posted on April 22nd, 2024
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Any home service company owner knows Google Ads are a pillar of your marketing strategy and bottom line, which is why you likely have a trusted marketing partner like Leadhub acting as your Google conduit. But how much do you know about how Google Ads work?

Leadhub strives to be a transparent source of marketing answers for our clients. When we make adjustments and optimizations to ad campaigns, there are hours of strategy behind those decisions! We’re here to debunk some of the hard-to-understand marketing metrics that we use to determine how campaigns are performing.

Let’s talk today about a metric Google provides to give an idea of whether your campaign will connect with customers — the quality score.

Google Ads Quality Score

While there’s a lot that goes into Google Ads optimization and management, few things are as important as your Google Ads quality score. The quality score rates the relevancy between the keywords your campaign is targeting and the content of your ads and landing pages.

In other words, it’s a prediction of how closely your ad meshes with what customers are typically looking for when they search for those keywords. Google measures this on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being the most irrelevant and 10 being the most relevant.

Google calculates the quality score based on three components:

  • Expected clickthrough rate (CTR) — The CTR is the likelihood a user will click on your ad when it’s shown to them.
  • Ad relevance — The relationship between your ad and the user’s intent with their search query.
  • Landing page experience — The usefulness and relevance of your landing page to users who click your ad.

You obviously want your Google Ad rank quality score to be as close to 10 as possible, but that’s not always realistic. According to Albert Salinas, Leadhub’s digital advertising manager, you’ll usually find the highest quality scores on branded keyword campaigns – and should expect somewhere around 8-10 for those.

For sales or conversion-focused keywords, you want to aim for a quality score greater than 5 for most of these types of keywords. Note: It can be more challenging to get better quality scores on longer tail keywords or near me based keywords.

Why Is Google Ads’ Quality Score Important?

Beyond providing a window into the potential success of your ad campaigns, consistently high Google Ads quality scores help in several different ways. For starters, maintaining better quality scores can help improve ad rank in Google’s auction process and lower your average cost per click (CPC). Lower CPCs mean you’re spending less money for new leads — and they help lead to lower cost per conversion, as well. 

Monitoring And Improving Your Quality Score

All it takes is a couple of simple steps to check your quality scores. First, make sure you’re at the keyword level in Google Ads. Then:

  1. Pick the specific campaign you’d like to view
  2. Click on AdGroup
  3. Select “Search Keywords” under the Keywords tab

Important note: Quality score may not be visible by default under the metrics columns. If you don’t see it by default, select “Columns” to modify your columns list. You can find Quality Score, along with additional relevance metrics, nested under the “Quality Score” drop-down menu. Salinas always recommends saving your adjusted columns as a “column set” so you don’t have to manually adjust the columns every time you log into your Google Ads account.   

Now that you know your quality scores, it’s time to boost them even higher. Here are some of the areas Salinas focuses on when thinking about how to improve the quality score Google Ads campaigns receive.

Negative Keyword Maintenance

No matter if it’s an old or new campaign, one of the first things you should do is spend time each week going through your incoming search terms report. This allows you to add any irrelevant terms that are wasting your ad budget to your negative keywords list.

Keyword Research

As obvious as it might be, check your keywords and conduct routine keyword research. You want to make sure you're continuing to target the right and most relevant keywords since search behavior and trends can change over time.

Keyword Organization

Beyond targeting the right keywords, organize them into relevant AdGroups based on a common theme. By grouping keyword “themes” together, it can help make tailoring keywords, ad content and landing page content feel more cohesive. Having consistency throughout all these steps in the user journey makes for a better ad and landing page experience, which helps improve the quality score.

Tailor Ad Copy

You should always test ad copy that is tailored to the theme of the AdGroup you are creating ads for. Higher-quality ads will get more clicks and generate a higher CTR (click-through rate). Remember, CTR is one of the variables that determine quality score, so this can have a huge impact.

Landing Page Optimization

Does your landing page design and content make the user experience easier and more relevant? Tailor page content to tie things back to what was mentioned in your ad copy. Make sure you include calls-to-action (such as Call Now, Schedule Today, etc.) to drive users to perform the conversion actions you want to track. Ultimately, make sure the page itself is working properly without any technical issues that can make for a bad user experience. Some of the most common issues include leaving out a form submit or call button, having broken page sections or failing to include tracking scripts on the page.

Avoid Black Hat Or Spammy Practices

Google is going to eventually penalize any black hat or spammy tactics, so it’s best to resist that temptation from the start. One of the most tempting tactics is “keyword stuffing” your page content, which means overly repeating the same keyword on a single page. Google sees this as repetitive and something that leads to a poor user experience since the content isn’t naturally readable.

At Leadhub, Quality Is King 

It's vital that you know your home service company's Google Ad campaigns are in the right hands. You can trust the experts at Leadhub to boost your quality scores while driving conversions and lowering your campaign costs. Contact us today for a free discovery call!

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