Landing pages now a major factor for AdWords

Posted on October 13, 2011

 

Google has announced a change to its AdWords ranking factors which will soon be rolling out globally. Ads Quality Group Product Manager Adam Juda announced on the official Inside AdWords blog last week that the way in which ads are assessed for quality is changing, with landing pages playing a bigger part in quality assessment.

The change was first tested in Brazil, Spain, Portugal and Spanish-speaking Latin America in August. The alteration places more weight on the quality of the landing page for the ad, specifically its relevance to the user’s initial search. The concentration on landing pages is a shift from previous practice, as it was thought that Google penalised sites only when landing pages were of significantly low quality.

The change indicates an increase in weight for quality factors, something that imitates the main search results and that the search engine optimisation industry is very familiar with. Site owners investing in an AdWords campaign are likely to have to enter into some traditional SEO thinking, taking the relevance of the page’s text into account before selecting which keyword they want to bid for. While search engine marketing and search engine optimisation have always been close, it is possible now that search engine marketing may edge further under the SEO umbrella, becoming one of the regular SEO jobs for site owners to perform.

While some Quality Scores are expected to fluctuate initially, Juda stated that many ad campaigns aren’t expected to see any changes after the initial disruption of the roll-out.

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