How to Improve your Quality Score in 5 Simple Steps (2018 Edition)

what is quality score

So you’re running your Google AdWords campaign and you think you have everything optimised.

Ads/keywords are relevant and compelling.

All the ad extensions are switched on.

Locations, ad scheduling etc. are all set in place and fit your clients needs.

But for some reason your Ad Quality Score is super-low. Help!

You might have heard that having a 10/10 quality score in AdWords gives you a number of benefits over your competitors, and you’d be right.

To be able to understand the steps to improve quality score we first of all need to answer the all important question…

What is Quality Score?

Google AdWords introduced Quality Score to help them decide which position an ad should be displayed in without solely relying on how much someone is bidding.

Did you know?: The average cost-per-click on Google AdWords in the UK is between £0.66 and £1.32

No longer does the size of your budget completely dictate how often you will show for your desired keywords or phrases. Google has made this change in their policy to improve results for their users.

AdWords Quality Score ranges from 1 – 10 and is based on a number of factors.

AdWords Quality Score Factors

  • Ad Relevance – How relevant are your adverts to the keywords you are bidding on? If your “red shoes” keyword delivers an advert for “blue shoes”, then not very well at all.
  • Landing Page Experience – Does the landing page that you’re sending users to when they click your ad relate to the ad itself? If your “PS4 Games” ad sends users to a list of Xbox Games, then it’s no good.
  • Expected CTR – AdWords takes into account how well your keyword has performed in the past. The expected click-through rate (CTR) AdWords provides for a keyword in your account is based on historical data on how often that keywords is getting clicked.


You might be thinking:

Well this is all well and good but how do I improve these things for my AdWords account?

Don’t fear…

How to Get 10/10 Quality Score in AdWords

Improve CTR: The best way to improve your click-through-rate is to ensure that you have strong ad copy that adheres to Google’s best practices and a number of ad extensions enabled so that your making full room of the ad space you’re given. Ad Extensions include – price, location, call, sitelinks, callouts, promotions and more. Which ones are most relevant to your business?

Improve Your Account Structure: Google recommend that you should make your account structure as granular as possible. By this I mean that you only have a maximum of a few keywords (with modifier variations) for each Ad Group. If you have 10+ keywords triggering a single ad, chances are, this isn’t best practice.

Increase Ad Copy Relevancy: Similar to point 1, not only does improving your Ad Copy increase CTR, it also improves your Quality Score directly if your keywords are relevant to the ad copy. Our rule of thumb? Always use your keyword in your Headline 1 of your ad e.g. if you keyword is ‘red shoes leicester’ Make your headline ‘Red Shoes Leicester’.

Improve Landing Page Experience: Make improvements to landing page to keep people on your website for longer. Good landing pages = pages with good content including videos and helpful or entertaining copy. Avoid simply having a lead generation form that doesn’t inform the user but include strong calls-to-action e.g. Form Submission buttons.

Utilise Analytics Landing Page Statistics: Fire up Google Analytics and check your landing pages bounce rates / average time on page. Are these abnormally poor compared to other pages on your site or your industry average? Highlight these pages for improvements.

Check the video below from Google themselves where they explain how to improve your AdWords Quality Score:

What is Ad Rank & How Does This Affect My Ad Position?

Ad Rank!? But I’ve just got my head round Quality Score! What’s Ad Rank!?

Calm down…

Put simply:

Ad Rank = Maximum Cost-per-Click Bid X your Quality Score

Simple right?

Essentially, what this means is that regardless of your bid, if you have a poor Quality Score you could appear lower in Google for a keyword whilst bidding more on it!

On the flipside, this means that if your Quality Score is 10/10 (like we’ve shown you how) then you can outrank your competitors whilst paying less money! Awesome 🙂

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