Google Ads Quality Score Factors [+ How To Fix a Low-Quality Score]

Have you found yourself often asking why your ads get shown over others, or why your ads are failing to appear in Googles search results? Well, there are many reasons why your ads aren’t being shown. This may be because your keywords are too specific with small search volumes, or maybe you’re being too specific with the location you’re targeting.

One thing, however, will always affect where and when your ads will be shown and that is your ads quality score.

Your ads work within an auction that bids against other ads for a position in Google’s search results. 3 things determine where you end up in the auction.

They are:

– Relevant ad extensions, keywords and ads

– Your bid – how much you’re willing to pay for a click on your ad

– Your quality score – the quality of your ads ie. How relevant it and the website it is linked to is for the person searching

All these factors work together and are equally important in the Google Ads auction. Therefore, you could have a very high bid, but if your quality score is low with no ad extensions then you’ll find you’ll keep losing the auction. Conversely, you could have a low bid but well organized and relevant ads with a high-quality score that help you beat the competition every time and have a lower cost-per-click for your ads.

Read on to find out the factors that make up your quality score and how to ultimately improve it!

What is a Google Ads quality score?

 According to Google:

So what does this mean? Well, the more optimised, relevant and organized your account is, the better! Therefore, creating campaigns that are super strict with their ad groups and have specific keywords and ads that then link to a very relevant landing page. The more refined each of your campaigns are, the higher your quality score.

Remember the higher your quality score the less you’ll pay per click, for a higher position!

Let’s now look at some specific factors that affect your quality score.

The different quality score levels


To make it easier, when trying to find what needs to be improved, you can look quite deeply in your ad account to see the quality score of your ad groups and the quality score of each of your keywords in an ad group.

This will help to quickly pick out problem keywords that aren’t relevant for an ad group. An ad group’s quality score is determined by the average quality scores of all the keywords in a given ad group. Therefore, if your ad group has a low-quality score, odds are your keywords aren’t refined or relevant enough for the ad group and could probably be moved to a new, more specific ad group.

Now let’s see what you’re looking at when you see your keyword quality score.

*Pro tip* To find your quality score in your Google Ads account, click on keywords (or ad groups) in the left-hand column and you’ll see a table of your keywords. Then in the upper right corner of the table, click the columns icon -> select Modify columns -> select quality score. You can also select landing page experience, expected click-through rate, or ad relevance for more information.

Quality score factor


Expected Click-Through Rate (CTR)


This is based on how likely your ad will be clicked on after a user has searched for your keyword. The higher this number is the more relevant your keyword is for your ad group and the ads shown. If this number is low, or your quality score is low, it’s worth asking the question – could there be a more relevant ad for this keyword? If so, move the keyword and make a new, more targeted ad group!

Ad Relevance

Are you mentioning your keywords in your ad copy? If not, start revamping your ads with a focus on the keywords in that ad group. If you have too many unrelated keywords in an ad group this will cause a low-quality score because of low ad relevance.

*Pro tip* Make sure your keywords are not only in your headlines and descriptions but also in your personalized URL!

Landing Page Experience


The landing page that your ads send users to should say the same things your ad does. If not, then you’ll be creating false promises and unhappy users. Your landing page should therefore be highly relevant and reflective of your keywords and ads.

If your quality score is low, take a look at your landing page. Is it doing everything that it should to entice users? Does it have the same copy and keywords used in your ads sprinkled throughout the page? Maybe it’s time to start creating new, more targeted landing pages.

How to fix Quality Score problem


1. Organisation

Campaign, ad group and keyword organization

Keywords must be split into specific, tight and refined ad groups and campaigns.

Simple steps to do this:

Look at the keyword with a low-quality score – is it due to ad relevance (change text of ad), landing page experience (change landing page of ad) or CTR (move the keyword to a more relevant ad group or create a new one).

2. Better keyword research

Add new, relevant keywords to your ad groups and create new SKAG’s (Single Keyword Ad Groups) that are highly relevant to one popular keyword (keyword optimized ads and landing pages).

*Pro Tip* Take a look at your search terms in your Google Ads account to find new, relevant and more specific searched for keywords.

3. Constantly add new negative keywords


It is as important to exclude irrelevant keywords as it is to add new, relevant ones. You can find potential negative keywords in your search terms as well.

4. Refine your ads

You need to be continuously testing new ads and making tweaks to your ad text to find out which improve the CTR of your ads. Also, don’t be scared to pause non-performing ads ie. don’t keep spending money on ads that don’t convert.

5. Created expanded text ads

Use the extra headlines and descriptions to add more information and calls-to-action to improve the persuasion and CTR of your ads.

6. Create ad extensions (if you haven’t already)

Google loves ad extensions because they add more value to your ads and improves your overall click-through-rate. The best ad extensions you need to have are:

Sitelink extensions

Call-out extensions

Structured snippets

Call extensions

Just adding these extensions will improve the CTR of your ads straight away!

7. Improve your landing page experience

Your ads can all be well organized and your click-through rate could be through the roof but if you send your target market to an irrelevant landing page that causes users to bounce (leave straight away) then your quality score is going to be affected.

Each of your ad groups should be sent to a relevant landing page that boasts the same text and promises as your ads.

Apart from relevancy, your landing pages should also be easy to navigate, look appealing, have easy to read copy and loads fast!

8. Refine, refine, refine

Google responds well to an account that is consistently being worked on, whereby new keywords are being added, ads and ad groups being created and tweaked. Don’t leave your account to gather dust and trust that it’ll always perform well. Keep working, keep tweaking and keep refining!

And there you have it! Step one is to start refining and organizing your account into a more ordered and narrow structure. After this, you should start seeing improvements in your quality scores!

Overwhelmed by where to start with creating and managing well-performing Google Ads? With our experience we know how time-consuming creating and maintaining a successful Google Ads account can be. If you would like us to handle your Google Ads and paid search for you, take a look at our PPC services and chat to us today. If you would like to chat to one of our consultants right now then set up a meeting here.