What is Ad Relevance and How Can You Improve It?

Ad relevance is a keyword status that describes how well your keyword matches with your ads. Think about it this way, if a potential customer searches for your keyword and sees your ad, would your ad match their search? Ad relevance is also one of the three factors that make up your quality score, along with ‘expected click through rate’ and ‘landing page experience’. Quality score gives you a general understanding of the quality of your ads. A better quality score results in a higher ad rank and will also help you lower CPC. Therefore, there are many benefits of having a high ad relevance and this blog will provide top tips on how to improve your ad relevance.

How is ad relevance measured in Google Ads?

Ad relevance is measured by Google using one of three possible statuses, ‘below average’, ‘average’ and ‘above average’. The above average status is what you want each of your keywords to achieve, as it often means there are no major issues with the keyword. On the other end of the spectrum, below average means your keyword or ad may not be specific enough and needs improvement.

You can find out the status of your ad relevance by logging into your Google Ads account, clicking keywords then adding a column for ‘ad relevance’. The image shows an example of keywords with above average ad relevance.

Ways to improve your ad relevance

Improve your ad relevance by matching your keywords with the ad

Our advice is to ensure your keywords match what is in your ad copy. Specifically, try to have the keyword at least in your ad headline. Then, if possible in your description and display URL too.

To achieve this, we recommend a methodology called “single keyword ad groups”. This means having one keyword per ad group. This ensures that your ad is highly relevant to the keyword when someone is shown your ad.

Here’s an example of an ad for the keyword “fender ukuleles”. “Fender ukuleles” is used in the headline, description and the display URL. Checking in Google Ads, this keyword has a ‘above average’ status.

Improve your ad relevance by doing Negative Keywords

Negative keywords are search terms that you choose to exclude in your ad groups or campaigns to prevent your ad from showing up when that search term is searched for.

By doing negative keywords, you tell Google not to show your ads for certain keywords. For example, if you own a luxury handbag shop, you don’t want to show ads for anyone searching for “cheap handbags”. Not only will this hinder your ad relevance, but it will also result in a higher bounce rate on your website if the customer lands on your website only to find out it is not what they are after. You’ll also be paying for an irrelevant click.

Improve your ad relevance by mining converting terms

While doing negative keywords, you may want to also mine converting search terms. By mining for search terms that have resulted in a conversion and implementing them as keywords with corresponding ads, you are expanding your reach while also increasing the amount of relevant ads served to potential customers.

Have the right landing page

Your landing page is the URL people land on after they click your ad. Ensure your landing page does the following to increase your ad relevance:

  • Relevant to the ad. For example, if your keyword and ad “miele rangehoods”, make sure you take people to a landing page on your website that steals miele rangehoods
  • Ease of navigation on the website
  • Quick loading times

You can read more about landing page experience in our blog, How To Create The Ultimate Landing Page Experience.

In Summary

By improving and achieving an above average ad relevance, you are improving your quality score and therefore lowering your cost per click. So, for the same budget, you can get more clicks and therefore increased sales and return. Achieving high ad relevance is a win-win situation for both you and your customers and it is one step closer to effective and efficient online advertising.

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