As mentioned before the Google Adwords ad auction is not only based on maximum CPC, as many believe. It is more complex than that. Google determines your ad ranks by looking at keyword maximum bids and quality score´s (QS). The rather complex formula QS range from 1-10 and is calculated every time your keyword is eligible to trigger an ad. Remember! The higher QS the better position and lower CPC, which of course means lower CPA (and increased conversion rates). So, there is a lot to win by having good QS´s. Always, and I mean always have your keywords QS´s under control. I have always been a bit in doubt about how precise the QS formula is… What are your thoughts?

What exactly what lies behind the Google QS?

Here is the answer from Google:

Quality Score Formula

  • The historical CTR of the keyword and the matched ad on Google; note that CTR on the Google network only ever impacts Quality Score on the Google Network—not on Google
  • Your account history, which is measured by the CTR of all the ads and keywords in your account
  • The historical CTR of the display url´s in the ad group
  • The quality of your landing page
  • The relevance of the keyword to the ads in its ad group
  • The relevance of the keyword and the matched ad to the search query
  • Your account’s performance in the geographical region where the ad will be shown
  • Other (unknown) relevance factors

And most important, what can you do to increase your QS´s:

  • Change the default settings for Ad text display. The default settings for ad display are set to optimize, which means that Google always shows the better performing ad. The problem is if you crated one ad version from the beginning, and decided to ad anothe version – the new ad will never be shown as the old one has data, and is by so the best performing ad. So, always set your ad display settings to rotate. This allows you to actually test your ads, to increase your CTR´s (and conversion rates).
  • Always think “Relevance” and create über specific ad groups around themes (of course with highly relevant ad texts landing pages and keywords)
  • Use your keywords in your ad texts
  • Always test your ads by using multiple ads in each ad group
  • Choose your keywords carefully – all of them have to have potential
  • If you have a large account – do some keyword scrubbing, and clean out keywords with: low relevance, low CTR, no conversions, no wievs, no clicks, poor QS (No wiews/clicks can be result of a too low bid, so always check that this isn´t the case)
  • Increase the CTR by using exact- and phrase match types
  • Use negative keywords to eliminate views to increase CTR
  • Fine-tune your ad copy for increased CTR
  • Make sure that your landing pages have short load time, relevant and original content (use your keywords!), high usability (easy path for a user to purchase the product or offer in your ad).

See Google´s guide on creating a LP with high QS

I also recommend you to read this post from Redfly!

A video focusing on LP QS: