Sick & Tired Of Google AdWords Quality Score

Jan 12, 2011 • 8:32 am | comments (11) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google AdWords

Google made AdWords famous with their Quality Score component. I am not going to explain what Quality Score is, for that, read here. But advertisers, long time advertisers are becoming really tired of it.

Every few months, it seems like Google continues to add quality metrics to the Quality Score algorithm. At first, Quality Score was based 99% off an ads click through rate, which worked well. But now there are tons of quality instruments, such as landing page, speed, ad copy, URLs and more. For advertisers to rank well, they need to know SEO.

The whole purpose of ads is to pay someone to get your ad in front of potential customers. But what Google is doing is making it hard for advertisers to pay for their ads to show in front of customers. Of course we as searchers don't want spam or harmful ads. Of course, Google wants the most relevant ad and that is how they rationalize the quality score feature. But advertisers want to pay money to get their ad in front of customers, they don't want to hire an SEO to reverse engineer the quality score algorithm in order to allow Google to take their money and show their ads.

A WebmasterWorld thread has advertisers who are simply tired and fed up over this quality score algorithm. WebmasterWorld's Brett Tabke said:

I completely agree. The whole quality score issue has turned into a farce. It is advertising - let people buy it.

Most AdWords advertisers agree, but they have no choice. If you want to be where your customers are, you need to do it. This is why top AdWords consultants do so well. So in a sense, it is job security for AdWords consultants but it does make it hard for new people, with small budgets, to compete.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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Terry R

01/12/2011 01:59 pm

I agree that there are several quality score problems with Google, especially when the algorithm changes so often. However, quality score isnt hard to moniter. It still has 70% based on CTR and 15% based on bid. If it was purely based on price/bid, then smaller budgets wouldnt stand a chance on Google at all. At least weighting the quality score towards the CTR allows them to compete, as long as their ads are relevant. If the site doesnt have at least basic seo when being set up, then who would really want to see it on Google? Chances are the quality is poor. If the site is well built and has no seo, then it shoul still appear for at least 1/2 of searches (proving they are relevant), and use creative ad copy to improve the CTR. This will mean that the advertiser will start to show for the majority of searches. If an advertiser doesnt have enough knowledge to understan that, then maybe they should be calling a media agency to help them.

Craig Danuloff

01/12/2011 05:06 pm

I don't think people are tiring of Quality Score itself, but of the confusion and lack of transparency around it. The market has realized they're playing a game based on hidden and sometimes changing rules. And the game costs them money every day. Who wouldn't get tired of that?


01/12/2011 05:16 pm

I agree entirely with Craig! Quality score is a great idea. I love the idea of Google telling me that they don't like my ads. I just get sick and tired of never knowing all of the reasons why they think my ad sucks and/or what they want me to change. The most frustrating part is when you call a Googler and the answers they have for quality score are very vague!

Joel Pinkham

01/12/2011 11:15 pm

"It is advertising - let people buy it."...ridiculous. If only it were that simple. If you're paying $5 per click, and getting a 0.5% click through rate, it's a $25 CPM. If you're paying $1 per click and getting a 5% click through rate, it's a $50 CPM for Google. Google is trying to maximise their revenue per impression - which is actually a good thing for users, advertisers and of course their shareholders. I see CPM by keyword/ad creative directly correlating with average position quite often and why wouldn't it? If anything they're doing ignorant advertisers a favour by having the quality score in place. Sure, the algorithms don't get it right everytime but in most cases if you're not ranking or getting clicks, you probably shouldn't be advertising in that area.


01/13/2011 02:47 pm

Quality score has gotten out of control ...Google tries to complicate things for no reason. Instead of letting people focus on whats happening to improve ROI they have worry about the quality score and reluctant to make changes. I think QC its useful at a certain extent but its too much to handle now and it takes time out of the workday.

April Dahlenburg

01/13/2011 05:12 pm

I agree! I's a 3 yr PPC SEM and Organic SEO even with the capability to create well SEO'd landing pages, we are not seeing QS come up at all!!! Clients don't care about QS, they just want their AD shown! I am getting so sick of battling Google QS I am encouraging my clients to supplement with B.


01/15/2011 11:01 am

I agree with this point ov view about quality scor algorithm. all the SEO should try with thier best for getting high rank.

Randy Pickard

01/15/2011 05:55 pm

In a addition to quality score, Adwords also seems to be applying a governor restricting new sites. Take the following with a grain of salt as it is based on a sample of a single site, but for a new site I am working on, Adwords required a huge premium to buy a sponsored spot at the top of the page, despite reporting a quality score of 10. It seemed like an initiation fee.

spletno oglaševanje

02/09/2011 01:48 am

Perhaps the adwords philosophy is infact to complicated afterall, but everytime they ad some feature i believe it improoves the product. Bare in mind that when google twqeaks adwords is always to maximise their profits, and they have been doing that so since ever. mostly important, they maximise their profits when all is in "optimum": searchers, advertisers, publishers. All must fit perfectly to maksimise (note: not optimise) Google profit.

Jack Bee

02/16/2011 03:51 am

This guy is really Surgey Brin in disguise...

Jack Bee

02/16/2011 03:55 am

Here we go....another Googler. Perhaps this guy is really Larry Page undercover.

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