Brad Geddes / PPC Geek
Official Google Ads Seminar Leader.
Author of Advanced Google AdWords.
Co-Founder, Adalysis.
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Brad Geddes's Theories on Marketing How Important is the Landing Page to AdWords Quality Score?

How Important is the Landing Page to AdWords Quality Score?

Recently, I posted about a video from Google Chief Economist, Hal Varian which explained the ad auction process.

Many were surprised to see the sizes of the pies he used for the quality score factors.

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Since the screenshot is pulled from the YouTube video, and difficult to read; here’s a breakdown of the three pieces from largest to smallest:

  • CTR
  • Relevance
  • Landing Page

In general, those factors are also rolled up to three main Google points; there are actually sub points under those items. For example, CTR also uses display URL CTR in determining the entire CTR pie piece.

Landing page looks like a small piece; however, this is what I find about landing pages:

A bad landing page will hurt you more than a good landing page will help.

For instance, in the old days of minimum bids, the higher your minimum bid the more likely it was to be the landing page at fault, and at a $10 minimum bid – it was almost always the landing page.

This is still true. A non-relevant landing page will hurt your account more than just about any other factor. It’s easier to work with a bad CTR than a bad landing page. While the total percentage allocated to landing page may look small, there is a much more severe penalty for a bad landing page than a lower than average CTR.

Going from a good to a great landing page helps very little.

I spoke with the Munich agency team a few weeks ago in Germany at an AdWords seminar and one statement they were willing to make was: If the system says your page is relevant, you can’t do any better. I have found this to be a fairly true statement. If you click on the magnifying glass icon next to your keyword and AdWords says your page is relevant – don’t worry about the small changes. Worry about the page as it relates to conversions.

On a side note, if you’re in Germany you have a fantastic team to work with. Take advantage of the support and resources that they offer. I was thoroughly impressed with that AdWords team.

Conclusion

Don’t spend hours of time tweaking your page for a quality score boost – it’s not worth your time. If you want to increase quality score, and your page is already relevant, then first start with testing ad copies. The changes you make to the landing page should be to increase conversion rate.

If you’d like to read more, here’s a piece at Search Engine Land on the 9 myths of landing page quality score.

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