4 Pro Tips To Improve Google Ad Rank Today

Published by Pedro Campos on

improve google ad rank

You´ve landed here because you want to improve your Google Ads ad rank.

Who doesn´t, right?

However, the real question should be: why? Do you know why it matters and what factors impact it?

Probably not.
But don´t worry, I´ll make it crystal clear for you today. In fact, I´ll breakdown for you the intricacies of ad rank so even an 8-year old can understand.

Also, you´ll discover the factors that have an impact on ad rank, and as the title suggests, how to improve it.

Ready to start improving?

How Google Ad Rank Works

Humm, not so fast!

As we´ve previously discussed, before improving something, you must first understand how it works. So how does this Google ad rank thing work?

Let me explain.

When someone is typing a query on the search engine, Google uses real-time insights to determine which ads to show to that person in what position.

Now, imagine for a second that you´re in a car auction!

Unlike in a typical car auction, on Google, having the highest bid doesn´t mean you´re walking away with that classic four-wheeler.
Your bid is just one of the factors.

Factors That Impact Ad Rank

Expected click-through rate: how likely someone is to click on one of your ads, based on innumerous historical data signals.

Ad rank thresholds: sometimes, advertisers don´t bid high enough or their ad quality is too poor, therefore don´t hit the threshold required for their ad to show.

Landing page experience: how easy or hard it is for the user to navigate or find what they´ve searched for on your website.

Context of the person’s search: this looks at components like the person´s location, device, or nature of the search terms.

Bid amount: your bids are an important factor but as you´ll see, having a high bid won´t guarantee your ad shows up first.

Ad relevance: how relevant the ad is compared to what the user searched for.

Quality of extensions and ad formats: this considers the types of ads you´re running and relevant ad extensions for the product you´re promoting.

How Ad Rank Is Calculated

Truthfully, almost no one knows how it is calculated, at least the exact formula. We can guess based on the signals Google uses in the ad auctions, mentioned above.

It´s important to mention two things here:

  1. Google calculates the ad rank, considering all the factors mentioned above at the time of the auction
  2. Ad rank gets recalculated every time your ads are eligible to appear

So, what does this mean?

It means the auctions are dynamic and even if your bids are lower than your competition, you can still be in a higher position compared to them.

google ads auction

For example, advertiser A has a bid of $2.00, advertiser B bids $0.75, C has a bid of $4.00, and D, $1.50.

Consider that advertiser C, the highest bidder, has a poor landing page experience paired with no ad extensions.

So, what would happen in this ad auction?
Advertiser B would take the first position, followed by advertiser D, A, and advertiser C probably wouldn´t even show up in the search results due to not meeting the ad rank threshold.

Google calculates the ad rank, considering a myriad of factors, in real-time, as someone is typing a query.

4 Ways To Improve Google Ads Ad Rank

Now that you understand the factors and how ad rank is calculated, we can dive deeper into the tactics to improve it.

In simple terms, improving your Google ad rank essentially will come down to four fundamental pieces:
1. Quality score
2. Bid
3. Relevancy
4. Testing

#1 – Improve Keyword Quality Score

Your quality score is made of three components: expected CTR, ad relevance, and landing page experience.

That being said, in order to improve ad rank, you must start by first improving one of the mentioned above. Ultimately, you´ll need to improve all of them!

google ads quality score
  • Increasing the CTR will come down to having great ad copy and making sure you include keywords in your ads
  • Make sure your ads are closely matched to what people are typing in
  • Follow these landing page optimization best practices to understand how to create better user experiences on your site

#2 – Have A Competitive Bid

We´ve said before that bidding higher isn`t everything!
While that is true, you shouldn`t limit yourself with too small of a bid and risk not even showing up in the results.

You might be wondering: “how do I know what the right bid is?”

The best way to get an estimate of how much you should bid for a keyword is to simply go to Keyword Planner.

google keyword research

It will give you a low top of page bid and a high top of page bid. You´ll want to aim for a number in the middle.
Start with that number and make adjustments along the way.

For instance, in this case, you can start by bidding $22 on the keyword “email marketing software”.
Once you get some data, raise or lower the bid, according to your campaign goals.

(RELATED: Which Of These Google Ads Bidding Strategies Should You Use?)

With great ad quality, even if your bids are lower than your competition, you can still be in a higher position.

#3 – Use All Ad Types And Relevant Ad Extensions

The next aspect you need to consider to improve your Google Ads ad rank is relevancy.

You´ll want to be using all ad types, expanded text and responsive search ads, and also including all ad extensions that apply to your business.

It is a best practice to have at least 2 to 4 ads per group and use both expanded and responsive ad types.

google ads campaign structure

Also, if you value phone calls in your business, you need to be using call extensions.
On the other hand, if you´re a local business, it´s best to include location extensions.

Regardless of what business you have, you should always aim to include these 3 ad extensions:

  • Callout extensions
  • Sitelink extensions
  • Structured snippets
google ads example

Take this example as a template to create your Google search ads. There are many ways to do it, this is just one.

#4 – Obsess About Testing Landing Pages

That´s right, obsess about it!

The most simple way to test is to copy an existing ad and insert a different variation of a landing page.

Remember that other businesses won´t have the same landing pages they had 10 years ago.
Well, some have but not the good ones, anyway!

If you´re an advertiser in a competitive market, you know what I´m talking about.

landing page optimization best practices

Test, test, and test some more.
It´s one of the best ways to improve ad rank because you´re always improving your landing page experience.

For the advanced user, you have at your disposal optimization tools like VWO or Google Optimize.

Unlike in a typical car auction, on Google, having the highest bid doesn´t mean you´re walking away with that classic four-wheeler.

Improving Ad Rank Isn´t Rocket Science

As you can see, you don´t need a science degree to improve your ad rank!

Sure, maybe you need to understand a few concepts but it´s mostly about common sense.

People who search on Google, including yourself, want the best experience possible when looking for something to buy.

As an advertiser, your main goal is to provide a great user experience.
Truly, that is the ultimate success metric.

Think about how you´re approaching your Google Ads campaigns right now.
What are you struggling the most with? Let us know in the comments below.

Categories: Google Ads

Pedro Campos

Pedro is the founder of Advertongue, a performance-based digital advertising agency. He is a paid media strategist for high-growth companies and experts all over the world, with over a million dollars in managed ad spend. You might have seen his content on sites such as Funnel Magazine, G2, Content Marketing Institute, or FitSmallBusiness, to name a few.


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