Paid advertising requires quality too
In the early years of Adwords, the only things that mattered when you wanted your ad to appear in top spots was the price you were willing to pay – the cost per click bid (CPC bid) – and the click through rate(CTR%).
This is no longer the case. Now there’s more to consider.
When CPC bid and CTR% were all that mattered, it was common to find low-quality irrelevant ads all over Google. If you searched for ‘shoes’, you might receive advertisements related to the broader category of ‘fashion and clothing’ instead of exactly what you were looking to find.
Over a period of time, Google felt the need to give its searchers more accurate and relevant results in order to ensure the company continued to be associated with high quality search results.
If Google had not made changes to the way Adwords worked, that entire aspect of their business might have been at risk. So, they stepped up and brought in yet another parameter that would affect the Ad Rank – Quality Score.
Your Adwords Campaign success today is all about your quality score:
Today, the amount you pay per click is determined by the following parameters:
- CPC Bid (Cost per click)
- Click Through Rate (CTR%)
- Quality Score
The higher the quality score and the higher the CTR%, the less you pay for each click. Hence, to bring your cost down, it is essential to work on your quality score.
Quality score depends on two things: keyword relevance and the overall quality of your landing page.
The offer on the landing page (the page that the ad links to), the keywords you are bidding on and the content in the ads must be coherent. If Google finds them irrelevant, it awards a low quality score which may even mean your ad is not displayed due to poor relevance. It could also mean that you have to pay a very high price to appear on the first page of Google – also know as first page bid estimate.
Here are a few things you can do to improve the quality of your landing page:
- Ensure that the keywords you are bidding on are present in the landing page title, meta tags and in the page content. This is not simply to ‘game’ the search engines, but also for usability purposes.
- Make sure that your keywords are present in your ads. This also makes your ads appear bolded when someone searches for the keywords you are bidding on.
- Copy the exact same content you have in your ads into the meta description tag.
- If you are using images, make sure to use the keyword you are bidding on in the ‘alt’ tag.
It is said that if you are paying $1 per click for a keyword when the quality score is 10, you may have to pay $2, if your quality score falls to 5. By taking care of the above points to improve your quality score, you will be able to bring your CPC down considerably.