I have been using Google Adwords for driving my online marketing campaigns for a while now. Being the best possible option to send relevant search users to your landing pages (and get conversions), a lot of Internet marketers depend a great deal on Google. However, your Google Adwords campaigns can turn out to be really expensive and may not yield much results unless the so-called quality score of your landing page is not optimized.
In this post let me explain what is meant by the quality score of AdWords landing pages and some practical tips & tricks that I use to optimize my AdWords landing pages.
What is Adwords quality score?
The quality score for your AdWords ads is calculated per keyword. Essentially it’s a measure of how relevant a particular keyword is to your ad text and the actual search query. It is a whole integer value between 0 and 10 (just like the toolbar page rank).
From what I have seen, a keyword quality score of 5 or above may be good. By the way, you can check the quality score of each keyword in your AdWords campaign by hovering the mouse along the ‘callout image’ near to the keyword under the ‘Status’ column. As per Google’s own tool the keyword quality score seem to be depending on three main parameters and they are:
- Keyword relevance
- Landing page quality
- Landing page load time
We just talked about the keyword relevance. Without having the search queries somehow ‘broad matching’ or ‘exact matching’ with your ad text and bidding keywords, you are not going to get any hits. Even if you do so, it will be at a very very high cost (CPC) than what is optimal.
Landing page quality score
Now, let me explain a few things that I do in order to improve my landing page quality score in Google’s eyes (Please scroll down to see optimization tricks as well).
Just like in the case of page rank criteria for regular pages, Google like original content on landing pages as well. Hence if you are planning to paste or reuse the same review text and HTML as the affiliate network provided, think twice. 10 others may be using the same stuff. Your first task in impressing Google AdWords is to custom write something that is appealing and extremely relevant to what you are trying to sell.
No malware, No frames, No redirects, No popups
Next you have to be aware that any attempt to capture information from the visitor, using frames with suspicious scripts, page redirects etc might land you in trouble including the extreme step of getting banned by Google AdWords.
Popup windows are another reason why many of the Clickbank product landing pages won’t get approved by Google AdWords and needless to say the page load time matters.
Proper call for action and conversion assets
The page content should be logically organized and easier for the visitors to go to the purchase or download pages. Authentic call for action conversion forms help the cause positively and if linked to secure payment/download sites, it is even better.
How did I optimize my landing pages for AdWords
I am not going to talk about the styling part and content here but here’re some of the thigns that worked very well for me.
- I always put my top two or three keywords that are attracting clicks on the Title and keywords meta tag. At the same time keyword stuffing is not a good idea
- Next I use exact match (in AdWords keyword tool use exact matches within […]) for those keywords that are working well as discovered above
- As a next step, I would run the Keyword suggestion tool from within my AdWords account and give the landing page URL to extract keywords. It should now show your top three or four keywords, unless already included in your bid list. Try to include some broad matching keywords along with this top there or four. Please note that this process takes several iterations
- Now, I run the ‘Diagnoze keywords‘ tool for all my keywords and check if the quality score is improving due to my landing page optimizations. Sometimes, there may not be an immediate change and hence you have to continuously do it for a couple of days
- Based on a few days results, I remove all irrelevant search keyword bids from my ad groups
- Finally, I use relevant part of my ad text/phrases on my landing pages including the title area
There are some more things that I do, including the creation of multiple adgroups based on the logical categorization, incorporating negative keywords etc. I shall talk about that at another point of time. Basically, I am still doing a lot of experiments with AdWords to see how can I improve CTR at the same time reduce the cost.
Happy Online Campaigning!