<< by on February 16th, 2007
Andy Beal did his best online version of Paul Revere yesterday after talking to staff at Google about changes in AdWords Quality Score.
Google is indeed planning a change to the Quality Score, with two major updates.
The addition of a new column in AdWords campaigns, showing the Quality Score.
A change to the Quality Score algorithm.
Fox explained the addition of the new column was Google’s effort to “improve transparency” and “make it easier to understand the quality score.” He also explained that Google hoped the new Quality Score information would “help advertisers optimize their ads.”
The new data will be available as early as tomorrow afternoon, which is a key move in anticipation of an algorithm tweak to the Quality Score in the next week or two.
I for one really want to see the Quality Score and hopefully have more insight into the mystery of what it really is.
Inside Adwords, Google’s Blog about AdWords goes into further detail about what these changes really mean:
So, what does this mean for you? As a result of this update, you may notice that the minimum bids increase for some of your keywords and decrease for others. To better understand the impact of this change, we suggest that you implement the Quality Score column. This will allow you to better monitor whether your minimum bids increase or decrease based on our changes. If you find that the minimum bids for any of your keywords increase, making your keyword inactive for search, please consider optimizing your campaign instead of raising your maximum CPC to the minimum bid. We recommend changes such as choosing a keyword that is more specific to the product or service that you offer or editing your ad text to make it more relevant to the keyword before you simply raise your minimum bid. By improving your quality we hope to provide the highest quality ads to our users while also providing you with the highest quality leads to maintain great ROI.
In other words, Start Optimizing your AdWords campaigns or Be Prepared to Pay More to Compete Effectively.
My first questions are how will a poor Quality Score impact the ability to use Position Preferences? And, how will advertising on Google’s Content Network, which typically negatively reduces click-through rate impact Quality Score.
In my opinion, click-through rate on the Content Network should not be a factor in Quality Score. Google’s technology frequently serves ads in funny locations on the Content Network. I have seen ads served on my Denver Nuggets Forum for a lot of things totally unrelated to the NBA or basketball. If someone jokes that someone should take a cruise to Antarctica in a post, ads for Russian Cruise Lines suddenly appear. Or, my favorite example is when someone calls another poster a feminine hygiene product beginning with the letter “d”, ads for those type of products suddenly appear on the page.
Are these relevant locations for these ads? Google seems to think so and frequently serves up those ads. Should advertisers be punished on poor click-through rate in these instances? I hope not. I use the Content Network sparingly, but if it negatively impacts our client’s overall quality score I will likely stop using it.