Hacking AdWords: Print Money On Demand with AdWords Quality Score

AdWords is an amazing place to drive traffic and get result’s. When I first started in PPC I was told to stay away from AdWords because they charge you to much and you have to spend too much time analyzing everything. Now that I know more about the game of traffic I love Google AdWords, and I would have to say they are by far the best network for me when I drive traffic.

By understanding quality score inside AdWords, you can almost print money on demand. In this article, I am going to show you the importance of Quality Score Inside AdWords, and I will explain to you mathematically how your Quality Score is calculated. Let’s get started!

How Quality Score Actually Works in AdWords

To fully understand Quality Score you first need to understand Google. What Google aims to achieve is to deliver relevancy to the people who use their search engine and to the people who see their advertisements across the web. Their ultimate goal is to always provide the most relevant ad to someone who searches on google and to those who click on an ad when browsing the internet. Google will only get paid when someone clicks on your ad, and you can’t get anything out of an ad unless someone clicks on it. Therefore, it’s in both parties interests to have relevancy because the more people who click on your ad, the better your ROI is, and the more Google makes.

Quality Score is a variable used by Google that can influence both the rank and cost per click (CPC) of your ads. Quality Score is reported on a scale of 1-10, from the worst score which is 1, to the best score which is 10.

Most people tend to think that bidding higher in AdWords gets them a higher ad position, but this isn’t the case because your Max Bid is only part of the equation when it comes to Quality Score. Like I said a minute ago Google’s goal is to deliver relevancy, their goal is not to make as much money as they can make off your ads. Ads inside AdWords are ranked using “Ad Rank,” which is mostly the product of your Max Bid * Quality Score (plus some other factors which I get to here in a minute).

Take a look at the illustration below. As you can see, advertiser one has the top position all while paying the least amount per click. This is due to them having a high-Quality Score. Most bidding wars end with the biggest player in the game. However, AdWords favors the players who put in place the things that get them high-Quality Score.


Key Takeaway: Quality Score greatly impacts your ad exposure inside AdWords. In fact, Google doesn’t even bother showing ads with low-Quality Scores. It doesn’t matter how deep your pockets might be, Google doesn’t want your money they want relevancy! Google will reward you handsomely with ad placements and highly discounted clicks if you have a high-Quality Score.

What Actually Determines a High-Quality Score?

I haven’t ever seen anyone EVER have a perfect 10 across the board so if you do, please let me know! Every time someone inputs a search into Google it’s Google’s job to show it’s Search Engine Result Pages (SERP’s). Most of the time when you search for something on Google you will have ads that are displayed in the SERP pages. Every time someone searches for something it triggers an ad action where Google calculates everything into Ad Rank.

Ad Rank determines your ad position — where your ad shows on the page in relation to other ads — and whether your ads are eligible to show at all.

Your Ad Rank incorporates your bid, Click Through Rates (CTR), ad relevancy, landing page experience, and a few others factors. If you improve the factors below you can significantly increase your Ad Rank:

Your ad’s expected CTR – This is based in part on your ad’s historical clicks and impressions (excluding factors such as ad position, extensions, and other formats that may have affected the visibility of an ad that someone previously clicked).

Your display URL’s past CTR – The historical clicks and impressions your display URL has received.

The quality of your landing page – How relevant, transparent, and easy-to-navigate your page is to the people who land on it.

Your ad/search relevancy – How relevant your ad text is to what a person searches for.

Geographic performance – How successful your account has been in the regions you’re targeting.

Your targeted devices – How well your ads have been performing on different types of devices, like desktops/laptops, mobile devices, and tablets.

The better your ads and landing pages are to the end user, the higher your Quality Score will become and you will start to benefit from having higher quality components of your Ad Rank, like a higher position or lower CPC with you campaigns.

Outside of Google no one really knows which factor weighs most when it comes to Quality Score algorithms, but what I do know is that your click-through rate is the most important component. The more people who see your ad and click on your ad is going to tell Google that your ad is relevant. When you have good CTR’s Google will reward you with higher Higher ad rankings Lower CPC.

Now that you understand the importance of a good Quality Score let my illustrate to you just how important your Quality Score really is.

Impact of Quality Score on CPC


As you can see in the picture above Quality Score can make or break you AdWords campaigns. The average Quality Score is 5 which doesn’t affect your cost. However, when you have a Quality Score of 10 you will be given a 50% discount for your efforts.

50% might not seem like much, but when you’re talking about a month long campaign that’s in an extremely competitive market you will save tens of thousands. On the other hand, if you have a terrible Quality Score of just 1 then you will on average have your CPC increased by 400%. When you multiply this by a month long campaign you will have spent tens of thousands of dollars on expenses that could have been much better spent if you start caring about your Quality Score.

Quality Score really comes down to you having relevant in your campaigns. You can significantly increase Quality Score by doing the following:

Performing Keyword Research – Discover new, highly relevant keywords to add to your campaigns, including long-tailed keywords that can significantly contribute to the bulk of your overall traffic with your campaigns. The tool, I recommend for keyword research, is LongTailPro

Structuring your AdWords account – By creating campaigns and ad groups around a particular theme or product, you can create keyword lists that directly relate to the corresponding ad text, and ads that link directly to that product’s page on your website. You can even add keyword-specific URLs to improve the quality and relevance of your advertisements in your account. Below is an illustration as to how you should structure your campaigns inside your AdWords account:


Refining & Optimizing Ad Text – Test out your PPC ad copy that is more targeted to your individual ad groups. More efficient ads will get higher CTR; this is one of the best ways to improve Quality Score.

Optimizing Landing Pages – Follow landing page best practices to create pages that connect directly with your ad groups and provide a cohesive experience for visitors, from keyword to conversion.

Drop Negative Keywords – Continuously optimize and research for your campaigns you’re running in AdWords. Identify and drop irrelevant search terms that are wasting your ad spend and budget.

What Does It All Mean? Key Takeaways

I know understanding Quality Score is no easy task, but when you implement the things I talked about in this article you will thank me for doing so. The big takeaway from this article is that AdWords is indeed hackable.

Inside AdWords, you can compete against people who have huge budgets and even known they have millions to spend you can still come out on top without breaking the bank. Take a look at the picture below, and you can see that advertiser one pays only $1.61 while advertiser 4 pays the highest amount which is around $8 and that’s all due to Quality Score.


Here’re some tips you can start doing today to get the most out of your AdWord account:

Tip #1 Don’t overlook Quality Score! – I am sure by now you know that Quality Score is a critical factor that can make or break you with your campaigns inside AdWords. Quality Score is mostly based on your CTR’s, and when you increase that metric you can basically print money.

Tip #2 Relevancy is the Key – Again your CTR is the key metric that is determining whether or not your ads are relevant (the percentage of people seeing your ad the end up clicking on it).

Tip #3 Create Great Calls to Action – A Call to Action is something you want the person to do (Get your Free Estimate, Order Now!, Get a Free Trail Today, Call Today, Book your Trip, Ect…)

Tip #4 Use Highly Relevant Landing Pages – Having high relevancy between eh search terms and the ad is just one part of the revelry game. Once a user clicks on your ad make sure they land onto a page that is highly relevant to the ad they clicked through.

Tip #5 Your Account Structure should be Built in Keyword Themes – Not Products or Services! Inside your AdWords account you have Ad Groups > Keywords > Ads. The best way to build these is to focus on themes. If you add all your keywords and ads to one ad group, a customer searching for women’s running shoes may see your ad about men’s tennis shoes. To show more relevant ads to potential customers, try grouping your keywords and ads into ad groups based on themes.

Most individuals and business owners don’t care to optimize and improve their AdWords account. I urge you not to follow this path. Just because you have a winning campaign in AdWords doesn’t mean you should stop there. It’s only through optimization, trying new things, and taking away negative keywords that can increase your CTR in AdWords. If all you do is spend 30-60 minutes on your PPC efforts you can significantly gain a leg up in the competition.

In Summary…

Google Adwords is like no other advertising platform I have ever come to use. They’re always looking to deliver relevancy and value to both advertiser and user alike. Having a low-Quality Score is something you can overcome unless you’re just plain lazy and in that case you will end up paying more than you anticipated.

Don’t succumb to average results go out and work for it!

Please share your thoughts on what you find hard/easy inside your AdWords account. Are you finding yourself with a good Quality Score and reaping the benefits? Share your thoughts below!