AdWords, Relevancy

How To Increase Click Through Rate & Quality Score in AdWords

AdWords 101: How to Increase Click Through Rate

“Our Click-Through Rates are Low”

In the digital marketing world, that six-word phrase is anything but music to your ears. If you’ve ever tried to run a successful Google AdWords campaign you might, unfortunately, be familiar with low click-through rates and how massive of a struggle it can be to strengthen the relevance in your content so your brand can increase conversions and Quality Score.

In today’s blog, we’re going to explain how click-through rates (CTR) are defined and we’ll supply proven strategies that your business can implement to increase the relevance in your content so your brand can attract a true customer market, skyrocket your click-through rate and maximize your conversions.

What is Click-Through Rate?

Click-Through Rate or CTR is the measuring system that shows how many clicks any given ad obtains, divided by the number of impressions (how many times your ad is shown). It’s an easy identifier to display how successful or unsuccessful your ads are.
Clicks / Impressions = CTR

Having a high click-through rate is one of the essential benchmarks for producing a profitable Google AdWords campaign. Google will reward your business with the gift of paying significantly less every time a user clicks, give you better positioning on their search pages, as well as the extra incentive of a higher Quality Score, all which are paramount to success.

Remember, the purpose of creating any piece of content is to accomplish your customer’s “job-to-be-done.” When you make your customer’s job your top priority and produce empathetic content, instead of “selling,” your business will a higher achieve a higher Quality Score with increased conversions at a lower cost-per-click.

Where to Find Your Click-Through Rate?

If you were to login to your Google AdWords account and scroll to the dashboard of your paid campaigns, you should be able to locate each and every one of your campaign CTRs.


How Does Your CTR Effect Conversions & Quality Score?

When your Google AdWords click-through rates are elevated, it denotes that potential customers see value and relevance in your content because it answers the question they’re searching for. If the content on your landing page answers their question and problems, your ads will produce a high conversion rate, leading to more profits.

The first question you need to ask your team: 
“What kind of content will aid our customer in completing their ‘job-to-be-done?’”

Make sure your team fully understands these four customer aspects before strategizing your next Google AdWords campaign:

  • What are they trying to know?
  • Where are they trying to go?
  • What are they trying to do?
  • What are they trying to buy?

Your Click-Through Rate percentage is dependent on the relevancy of your headline, description copy, URL design, and finally your website’s landing pages. Relevancy means that your content uses high-ranking Keywords that speak directly to completing your customer’s desired “jobs-to-be-done.”

Google’s highest priority is relevancy. Their goal as a platform is to provide the most optimal user experience for every user, therefore if you’re delivering poignant topics related to your customers' search habits, your Google AdWords ads are headed to higher Click-Through Rates, increased Quality Score, and more conversions.

Can A High Click-Through Rate Affect You Negatively?

The short answer is yes. The majority of the time, a high click-through rate is a positive attribute, as long as your conversions are consistent with your click-through rate. Here are some situations where a high CTR might bring down your Quality Score.

  • If you’re ranking for keywords that are not relevant to your customer’s “jobs-to-be-done.”
  • Achieving a high click through rate but low conversion rate.
  • Using Keywords that are too broad. Every time a user clicks on an ad your business is charged. Don’t waste valuable clicks on customers who aren’t interested in buying.
  • You’re bidding on Keywords that are too expensive for your budget.

If your business is looking for a deeper education into strategizing Keywords for your Google AdWords campaigns, check out our article on Keyword selection.

Google Partner Tips to Strengthen Click-Through Rate & Conversions:


1. Utilize Extensions & Sitelinks To Increase Conversions:

Ad Extensions and Sitelinks are incredible additions to increase your CTR and conversions. These simple changes can also increase your Google AdWords relevance and typically help in aiding your customer to complete their jobs-to-be-done.

Clever and attractive Ad Extensions will give you a leg up on the competition while allowing your brand to take up more space on the search result page and educate your audience with need-to-know information. Plus, data shows that ⅓ of all mobile user searches are focused on local businesses and solutions, so adding these elements to your AdWords arsenal will aid in honing in on your target audience.

Ad Extensions:

  • Location Extension
  • Call Extension
  • Consumer Ratings Extension
  • Social Extensions


A Sitelink is a type of extension that you can add to your content that will increase relevance or specificity to your potential target customer. It allows your brand to place more focus on location, services or offerings that you can use to increase your value to your customer.

  • Amenities
  • Brands
  • Courses
  • Degree programs
  • Destinations
  • Featured hotels
  • Insurance coverage
  • Models
  • Neighborhoods
  • Service catalog
  • Shows
  • Styles
  • Types

Google Partner Tip: If you’re offering free downloadable content, eBooks, Infographics, or Whitepapers, try adding these as clickable Sitelinks to increase traffic to your content.*


The more extensions you use in your AdWords campaigns the more ammunition Google has to get your business on the first page of the search results, increase your ad’s click-through rates and Quality Score.


2. Write Descriptive Headline Copy & Increase Conversions:

Your ad’s headline is the first piece of the content puzzle that most customers will read after searching on Google.

If you want to increase click-through rates and conversions, your team needs to produce Headlines that pinpoint the products or services of your company, but more importantly how they will positively affect your customer’s lives.

Your Headlines must contain relevant Keywords, all-the-while fitting your brand voice.

Surge Conversion Rates With Long-Tail Keywords:

You might be asking, what is a Long-Tail Keyword?

Say, for example, you’re a car dealer in St. Louis that specializes in SUVs and you’re going to produce some AdWords ads. You have the choice to focus on broad Keywords like "SUVs” or you can narrow your focus to Long-Tail Keywords like "Best deals on SUVs in St. Louis."

This specific strategy will identify your customers need while narrowing your focus because your ads are speaking to your customer when they’re closer to making a purchase decision. This is a very effective strategy for ensuring your ads click-through rates are consistent.

How to Increase Click Through Rate With Negative Keywords:

Negative Keywords, like Long-Tail Keywords, allow you to reach a more specific customer at a later time in their purchase journey. Negative Keywords exclude keyword phrases that are irrelevant or are generating clicks, but not conversions. You want to choose the keywords that are not relevant to your products or services and take them out of the equation as soon as possible.

For example, if you only sell women’s clothing, exclude any keywords that include “men’s” or “children’s” in the phrase. Or if you sell very high-end products you would choose “cheap” or “best deals” as your negative keywords so you can exclude that customer from your targeting. By narrowing your audience, you’ll save your company money, while increasing your CTR because your ads are more relevant to your intended audience.

When trying to produce relevant Headlines, make sure your copywriter adds the top keywords in your ad group to the headline. This will show Google or any other search engine that you’re extremely relevant to your consumer. It will greatly improve your Quality Score, generate more revenue, as well as shout to your customers, “hey, this ad is relevant to you.”

Ultimately, your copywriter or marketing manager needs to be the judge. Again, put yourself in your customer’s shoes and ask yourself, would you click on this? Is it relevant to the job your customer needs to accomplish?

If so, then you’re on your way to more efficient click-through rates and increased conversions.


3. Add Special Offers to Your Headlines & Improve Quality Score:

The constant bombardment of content has made society very spontaneous, so if your potential customer sees something they don’t like, even if it's for a split second, you’ve lost their attention and their business.

Your consumers are wildly varied and there is never a “one size fits all” approach to profitable copy. But, what everyone does love is a deal!

When your brand uses your headlines to showcase your special offers and sales on your products and services you’re beginning to speak to a narrower more focused audience which is a fast track to increasing conversions and Quality Score.


It’s vital to understand your consumer, the platform on which they’re accessing their content, and what their intended outcome is. Only after your team defines these aspects can you confidently assess if your brand’s copy will generate more successful click-through rates.


At the end of the day, no one on earth cares about you, they care about how your products or services can improve their lives and complete their “jobs-to-be-done.” So, make that the focus of your content and your click-through rates will rise.


4. Customize Your Display URL & Increase Conversions:

Since no warm-blooded mammal wants to constantly look at strings of numbers and attempt to decipher what they mean, a user-friendly URL helps to clarify and describe the file structure on your company’s website.

What it also does well, it acts as subliminal advertising. Your display URL is yet another tactic for your digital marketing specialist or SEO expert to grab your audience's attention and raise Quality Score. When it comes to click-through rates, your URLs are one of the first things the Google bots and the customers see apart from the headline.

A user-friendly and descriptive URL is a blueprint for constructing an effective and relevant digital marketing strategy and when designed correctly will confidently direct your customers to their desired destinations.

Google requires that the root domain name is included in the display URL, but your team has the ability to make the most out of this. Tiny changes to the Display URL can really make a difference in click-through rates and conversions and many marketers aren’t utilizing this aspect to its fullest.


Now, there’s no question, the average customer searching Google isn’t necessarily thinking about impeccable URL design, but when it’s done right, your business will immediately attract your customer’s attention and you’re more likely to generate higher click-through rates and increased conversions.

Just like using the color red or yellow for branding purposes, a descriptive, eye-pleasing URL does the same thing, it unconsciously attracts your customer. There’s a reason why most fast-food chains use those colors, just like there’s a reason why most successful websites stick to a user-friendly URL structure. Because it works!

Additional Google Partner Tips To Raise Conversion Rate & Quality Score:

  • Ensure your ads are eye-catching.
  • Test different versions of copy.
  • Use top ranking keywords in your copy.
  • Drive customers with a strong call-to-action.
  • Send users to the page on your website that’s most relevant to each ad.

What Is a Profitable CTR for Google AdWords?

The thing to keep in mind is there’s no “one-size-fits-all” answer to what makes a successful click-through rate. Data seems to vary from campaign to campaign, industry to industry, and even from keyword to keyword. 

Average CTR in AdWords:

  • Search = 1.90%
  • Display = 0.35%

However, the Google Partners behind ClickScore would suggest aiming for a slightly higher number. If your CTR is over 4% on the search network and above 1% on the display network, this shows that your content is aligned and your keywords are relevant to achieving your customer’s “job-to-be-done.”

In Conclusion:

Remember, the higher and more efficient your click-through rate, the better your Quality Score, and a higher Quality Score is the path to increased conversions and success in pay-per-click campaigns.

Improving your CTR is something that takes time, patience and testing. You must test and watch the results, then act on what’s working to ensure you’re completing your customer’s “jobs-to-be-done.”

When you study the job that people are trying to get done, rather than the end-product, your team is minimizing loss to the greatest degree, ensuring you are reaching the right customers with the right content at the right time. Increased revenue will follow suit.

If you’re still shaking your head over how to increase your click-through rate and increase the relevance of your content to your customer’s job-to-be-done, check out ClickScore’s Relevance Guide then take our short quiz below to test your Click-Through Rate knowledge.

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About Team ClickScore

ClickScore gives clarity around digital marketing waste. We use actionable data to align and position your organization’s online presence so your marketing can solve your customers’ “jobs-to-be-done.”