What Are The Three Main Factors That Determine Ad Quality?


PPC Ads are one of the most established forms of digital marketing. They offer the highest ROI out of all advertising models out there.

PPC stands for “Pay-Per-Click,” which is a form of online advertising where advertisers pay for each click on their ads. And Google Ads is the single most popular PPC advertising system in the world. 

Why? Mainly because Google dominates the search engine market, with a 90% share globally. As a result, advertisers tend to focus their PPC efforts on Google to reach the largest audience possible.

And if you’re trying to get started with PPC on Google Ads, you’ll need a solid understanding of Ad quality and quality scores. Mainly, what are the three main factors that determine ad quality?

Ad quality and quality scores greatly influence the cost and effectiveness of all your Ad campaigns. This metric affects how your search Ads will perform and how much you pay for each click.


This article will walk you through everything you need to know about Ad quality, the factors determining quality scores, and how to improve and optimize your campaigns.

What is Ad Quality Score?

While some marketers use it as a single term, ad quality and quality score are separate concepts.

Ad quality is an estimate of the user’s experience as they interact with your search ads and how well an ad aligns with their search intent.

And quality score is a Google Ads metric meant to give you a sense of how well your Ad quality compares to other advertisers. 

For example –

If your target keyword is “Day planner” and your landing page is a neat list of the top 10 daily planner apps, it’s clearly a relevant Ad, and Google is likely to give you a higher quality score.

If, on the other hand, someone searches for “Day planner apps” and your Ad shows up, with the landing page offering a sign-up link for a productivity course, you may get a lower quality score for bidding on Keywords that aren’t relevant to your offer.

A high-quality score indicates that an ad is relevant, helpful, and likely to result in a positive user experience. It can also lead to lower cost-per-click, higher ad positions, and better ROI.

How to check your Ad Quality score?

The most effective way to check your quality score is by enabling the quality score column within the keyword tab of Google Ads. This way, you can continually monitor individual quality scores for all your keywords.

To enable quality score columns, follow these steps –

  • Sign in to your Google Ads account.
  • Go to the left menu, and select “Campaigns.”
  • Choose “Customize Columns.”
  • Pick “Attributes.”
  • Select “Add” next to “Quality Score.”

 Save your changes.


Now that you know what quality score is, let’s take a look at the three main factors that affect it.

3 Main Factors That Affect Ad Quality Score

When Google calculates Ad quality score, it considers 3 main factors related to Keywords, Ads, and Landing pages.

As you read about the three factors, keep in mind that Google weighs each of them differently. 

As per research, Expected CTR and Landing page experience contribute more to Quality score than Ad relevance.


1. Expected CTR 

The Expected click-through rate is a keyword-related factor that measures the likelihood of someone clicking your Ad while searching for the Keyword associated with it.

This metric is based on the past performance of the Keyword. It does not consider your Ad’s position, assets, or other Ad formats that reduce your Ad visibility.

In real-time, however, Google uses a more accurate version of the expected CTR based on demographics, device type, and other auction factors.

Three potential statuses that Google assigns for your expected CTR –

  • Above average – This means your expected CTR for this Keyword is better or as good as all other Keywords on the Google Ads network.
  • Average – Your Keyword has no major Expected CTR issues.
  • Below average – Your click-through rate for this particular Keyword is lower than all keywords across Google Ads. 

How to improve your Expected CTR?

  • Choose the right keywords – Use relevant and specific keywords that match search intent. Use keyword tools to find the most relevant and highest-volume keywords.
  • Create compelling ad copy – Use engaging and persuasive ad copy that clearly communicates your product’s or service’s benefits. Use a strong call to action to encourage users to click on your ad.
  • Use ad testing – Test different ad copy and ad extensions to see what performs best. Use A/B testing to compare different versions of your ads and optimize for the best-performing versions.

2. Ad Relevance 

Google defines ad relevance as “how closely your ad matches the intent behind a user’s search query” 

And as an advertiser, it’s more about the relevance of your Ad copy to the Keywords in your Ad group. The more relevant your Ads, the more personalized it is to the visitor.

For instance, if you run a digital marketing agency, “web design agency,” “content marketing services” or “SEO agency” might be relevant keywords for your Ad campaigns.

But instead of creating separate Ads targeting each Keyword, if you’re using the same Ad for all three Keywords, you’ll be sacrificing relevance. This is what Ad relevance is measuring.

How to improve Ad relevance?

  • Create specific ad groups – Group your keywords by theme and create ads specifically tailored to each group. This ensures that your ads are relevant to the user’s search query.
  • Use dynamic keyword insertion – This technique allows you to automatically insert the user’s search term into your ad copy, which helps increase relevance and grabs user attention.
  • Focus on the user’s intent -Try to understand what the user is looking for and tailor your ad to meet their needs. For example, if a user is searching for “best coffee shops near me,” your ad should focus on the location and quality of your coffee shop.
  • Use ad extensions – Ad extensions can provide additional information to users, such as your business address or phone number, which can help increase relevance and make it easier for users to contact you.

3. Landing Page Experience

When measuring landing page experience, Google takes into account the following factors –

How clear and useful is the landing page to your customers?

How related is it to the Keywords that the users are searching for?

How likely is it to provide a good experience to the customers?

But what exactly does “clear and useful” mean? And how “related” should be the landing page content with the keyword?

  • Clear – The landing page should be easy to navigate and have a clear layout, a prominent yet minimal headline, a clear call to action, and relevant images or videos supporting the content.
  • Useful – Design is one thing; content is another. The content should be easy to consume, clearly highlighting the product’s or service’s benefits, with little to zero fluff.
  • Related – Ensure that the landing page is closely related to the ad group and keywords that triggered the ad. The landing page should contain the keywords used in the ad and other relevant keywords that match the user’s search intent.

Avoiding “keyword stuffing”, or using the same keyword repeatedly on the page, is also important. This can be seen as spammy and hurt the user’s experience. 

Instead, focus on creating a high-quality landing page that provides value to the user and is closely related to the ad and keywords being used.

Final Thoughts

Quality score is all about helping you target the right keywords, write compelling copy, and create landing pages that offer a positive experience to your target audience. By consistently monitoring and improving your ad quality score, you can outperform your competitors and achieve your advertising goals more effectively. 

If you run a business, however, it can be time-consuming to oversee your Ad campaigns. Here at Intensify, we specialize in helping businesses achieve success through highly effective digital advertising campaigns.  Our team of experts work with you to optimize your ad relevance and landing page experience, and help you achieve better ROI and business outcomes. 

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help intensify your ad campaigns and drive real results for your business.