Written By: Adam Dince
Google recently announced that landing page quality will have much more of an impact on the overall quality score of a PPC advertisement. http://adwords.blogspot.com/2011/10/ads-quality-improvements-rolling-out.html. In a nutshell, Google wants to make sure that users clicking on paid search ads have a seamless experience from query to conversion. Users who have a good experience using paid search will most likely continue to click on sponsored ads. Users who have a poor experience are more likely to ignore paid ads in the future. When searchers ignore paid ads, Google’s purse gets a little lighter.
Ultimately, Google is emphasizing landing page quality for two objectives that are intrinsically linked together:
- Improve user-experience
- Increase/sustain revenue
What Does This Mean For PPC Advertisers?
It means that PPC practitioners are going to have to learn bit of SEO theory and begin to optimize landing pages. While PPC landing page quality won’t have to live up to the same expectations that organic pages do, the principles are still the same—provide the most useful experience for the searcher.
It’s A Great Opportunity to Synergize Practices:
Often SEOs and PPCs in agencies operate in completely separate work streams. Many of us talk a great game about the importance of search synergy and combining both practices, but how deep do we really go with it? Is it simply sharing keyword sets with each other? Or is it actually creating connected strategies? Let’s take this push from Google to create higher quality PPC landing pages as an opportunity to work together as search professionals.
A Few SEO Questions To Ask When Creating/Optimizing a PPC Landing Page:
- Does the landing page accurately represent the keywords that are being targeted?
- Does the landing page have a similar look and feel to the rest of the site?
- Would a user want to share the landing page with friends?
- What is the tone of the content?
- Is there a consistent content theme throughout the page?
- Are there too many themes on a single page?
- Is the content written well?
- Does the layout of the page encourage readership?
- Is there a clear call to action?
Side Note: A Quick Tip To Help Drive SEO Value From your PPC Landing Pages:
Many times, it’s not possible to create paid landing pages within the primary architecture of your Website. In those cases, it’s common to create one-off landing pages that are not linked to from your Website and are strictly used for paid advertising and/or media campaigns.
When you create high-quality landing pages that feature solid products and/or offers, it is highly likely that consumers and other Websites will link to those landing pages, passing on valuable search equity to them. The problem is, often times, search engines won’t return PPC landing pages within their organic search results.
So, to pass on the SEO value of your paid landing pages to your primary Website pages:
- Ask yourself, “What page on my Website is most like the PPC landing page I just created?”
- Once you’ve determined what Website page is most like your PPC landing page, throw a canonical tag on the PPC landing page and direct search engines to the similar page on your Website
This will not affect how users see your page or interact with your site. What it will do, is help search engines pass on the link equity from your paid search landing pages to the similar pages on your Website. Ultimately, this should improve the visibility and performance of your primary Website pages.
Ultimately, Google will continue to push for the highest quality search experiences for both paid and organic search. With Google’s emphasis on landing page quality, let us focus with a renewed sense of purpose, creating the best possible user-experiences for our visitors.