Sep - 2010
09

Google Instant’s Affect On Adwords Quality Score?

I live in Canada, so I haven’t actually tested this yet, but I have a big concern from what I’ve learned in talking to US members of PPC Coach. It appears that they will show results complete with adwords ads BEFORE the user is done typing in their search phrase. This is very bad if those semi-searches are counting as impressions of your adwords ads. Here’s a quote from one of their own help pages regarding Adwords ads and their newest gadget:

Google Instant might increase or decrease your overall impression levels. However, Google Instant can improve the quality of your clicks since it helps people search using terms that more directly connect them with the answers they need. Therefore, your overall campaign performance could improve.

How can they put this,  “…might increase or decrease your overall impressions…”?  How can it decrease impressions? More importantly how can it do anything BUT increase impressions per search. If someone types in a long tail keyword and Google starts showing them 10 or 12 different search result pages complete with adwords ads, that’s not good. Now our impressions, as Adwords advertisers, go up by 10 or 12 times? That has some serious ramifications on that keywords quality score. Click through rate accounts for 80% of their quality score calculation. Click through rate is simply the number of clicks divided by the number of impressions. If the number of impressions go up by 10 to 12 times the normal rate, then that is going to seriously drop our click through rates.

Since getting and keeping a double digit click through rate is vital to having a successful search network campaign, Google is not doing the right thing here. They are automatically lowering click through rates across every account they have. Every campaign, every adgroup and every keyword will automatically have a much much lower click through rate. Going back to the CTR being 80% of the quality score calculation, (landing pages and other factors are the other 20%), this means we are going to be paying a lot more for our ads then we did before this came about. This is great if you own shares of Google. (In fact I think I’ll go buy some more).

Wow.

I seriously hope I’m wrong with everything I posted above. If I’m not that’s going to mean lowering CTR’s, much lower quality scores and therefore much higher costs to run ads. I know they have a lot of brainacs at Google and I hope they’re going to somehow adjust for this.  I have faith that they will somehow adjust for this.  They have to.  It’s just not really fair to adwords advertisers as it stands right now.  So Google if you’re listening, please please help us out here?  Show us how you’re going to adjust for this huge increase in impressions.  We know you’ve got the money, brains and power to do something fair, so please do for the sake of all your advertisers who have filled your pockets for years!

According to this: Google Instant I’m right…and for once I don’t want to be.

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