How does Google evaluate your ads and decide where to place them on a search engine result page (SERP)? Google uses a specific metric called Quality Score.

Quality Score (QS) does a couple of things for your Google Ads campaigns. First of all, you should always aim for a higher Quality Score (QS) since it influences the actual cost per click for your ads (the bigger the QS — the lower the cost).

Secondly, combined with the maximum bid that you have set, QS also influences your overall Ad Rank. In turn, your Ad Rank is going to determine the position of your ads in relation to your competitors.

So what makes a Google Ads Quality Score?

  • Ad Relevance
  • Landing Page Experience
  • Expected CTR (click through rate)

Ad Relevance

The answers your ads provide for the users' search queries should be as precise as possible. You can achieve that by adding your keywords into the header and the body of an ad.

For example, you could repeat the keyword you are using verbatim, which makes your particular ad more relevant to the search queries that have led to this ad being shown.

Landing Page Quality

Landing page quality includes a variety of factors such as keyword inclusion in the ad copy, ad metadata, user page behavior, the page’s convenience and the user’s ability to find all the necessary information quickly.

Google also analyses user behavior after they have left your page. Basically, this means that if a user goes back to the search engine and uses the same search query they have used before to find another information source, this will send Google a signal that your particular ad-linked webpage does not present relevant information. Needless to say, this will negatively affect your ad’s Quality Score.

Google will also analyze whether your landing page is mobile-friendly or not. It is a known fact that mobile traffic volume is now outpacing that of desktop so Google will definitely check if your landing page is mobile-compatible.

Expected CTR

Historical CTR data influences your expected CTR. It is very important to optimize your ads CTR-wise. It means that you don’t have to chase the first ad position by overheating the auction through aggressive bid raising. Try optimizing your CTR and you will end up paying less than your closest competitors do.

You will need to pull in additional columns to see all these stats in your reporting dashboard and make the right decisions according to them.

Extra columns with Quality Score data

You need to pull these columns in from the left-hand side of the dashboard by clicking «Keywords», then «Modify Columns».

After that, choose new columns under the «Quality Score» section. You can add everything we spoke about before, such as Landing Page Quality, Ad Relevance and Expected CTR.

You can also use historical quality score data to compare changes in your performance. This will be very helpful if you decide to change your ad copy or upgrade your landing page.

Google Ads Quality Score

Now, after you’ve added these new columns you will be able to see your Quality Score next to each of your keywords. It is displayed using a scale of 1 to 10.

If you hit a Quality Score of 7−10 you might want to focus on adding additional keywords or testing out new strategies, whereas lower scores identify that you need to work on the points mentioned earlier in the blog, such as CTR or your Landing page.

Based on this data you can make decisions on where to pay closer attention: on the ad itself, the landing page or focus more on the potential ad CTR.

Track your Quality Score, create the most relevant ads, craft convenient easy-to-use landing pages, add them to your ads, and never link your ads to unrelated pages and you will be able to achieve the best ad positions and pay less money than your competitors.