Is Optimizing for Quality Score Always Right?

Is Optimizing for Quality Score Always Right?

Optimizing for Quality Score

Here’s Why Optimizing for Quality Score Isn’t Always the Right Choice

As digital marketers, we focus on quality score because it is a fundamental component of ad rank. Google determines quality score by factoring in your ad copy, landing page experience and click through rates.

Optimizing ad campaigns for quality score has been promoted as a best practice, but is it? Improving your ad quality score is tough, and it may not have as big of an impact on your SEM campaigns as you think.

What Your Quality Score Says About You

You can gain valuable insights from your quality score including relevance, landing page experience and click through rate. If you’ve optimized your landing page experience for search queries and user experience and your quality score and click through rates are still low, there may be more to blame than just your page copy.

Your keywords may be too broad or don’t show enough intent and are being matched with queries that aren’t an actual fit for your business. To determine if this is the case, look into your keyword search report. If the terms aren’t a fit for your business offering, it’s time to rethink those terms.

If you find a few out-of-place keywords, adding negative keywords can help. You might also consider changing keywords from broad match or phrase match to broad match modifier to prevent off-topic keyword searches. If a term is leading to several mismatches, it’s time to pause that keyword.

When to Care

Quality score is an important metric to track when looking for optimization opportunities. For example, if there is a search term that earns you conversions but has a low quality score you could be generating more sales and revenue by improving that score. In addition to showing your ads more, a better quality score could earn you a lower cost per click that would improve your cost per acquisition.

When to Throw in the Towel

There are times when it might be wise to throw in the towel on a quality score. If you have terms with quality scores of 1 or 2 your time is better spent elsewhere. You may want to rank for certain terms, because you think they’re relevant, but they don’t match up with the intent of the consumers who search them.

Don’t Put Quality Score Over Conversions

An ad that converts with an average quality score is better than the ad that doesn’t convert with the highest score. If you’re worried about quality score alone, you may tweak ad copy in a way that will cost you conversions. It’s important to ensure your ad copy still drives conversions if it doesn’t earn you the highest quality score.

Quality score is still an important metric. It can reduce your cost per click, CPA and help you earn top position. However, it’s not the only metric to watch. Keep track of conversions, and make sure your ad copy continues to reach and convert your target audience.


Always follow industry best practices and all applicable rules and regulations with your advertising and marketing materials. ArrowShade takes compliance very seriously. We are also here to help. For questions regarding compliance, please email us at


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