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Landing Page Load Time Affects Quality Score
Found in Google Help Files
jkwilson78




msg:3591432
 12:08 am on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

I recently got hit with some "poor" keyword quality scores and in frustration I printed out the whole Adwords FAQ (several hundred pages) and started going through it hoping for some nugget of info I may have missed about quality score.

Well, towards the end I came across this stunner:

"How does website load time affect my landing page"

It goes on to explain that starting in Feb 08 load time of lading pages will be factored into quality score and that there is some load time analysis page in your account which I cannot find.

Some other good stuff in this section of the FAQ is that they state a little more info how often they re-analyze lading pages for quality score:

The AdWords system re-evaluates landing pages on a regular basis (approximately once a month). If you make significant improvements to your website's load time, you should see an improved Quality Score and lower minimum cost-per-click (CPC) bids. Note that your Quality Score may update incrementally over two to three months after you improve your load time.

What's real interesting is that if you try to find this info by searching the FAQ I couldn't find it. It appears to only be in the page containing the full FAQ:

Go here:
https://adwords.google.com/support/?fulldump=1

Then search that page for:
"load time affect my landing page quality"

 

LifeinAsia




msg:3591439
 12:16 am on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

Makes sense to me- if your page takes forever to load, that to me is just as bad as poor quality content.

However, having a penalty that hangs over you for a month just because your server happened to be slow just at the particular point when the Google Quality bot came by... (Especially if the server was overloaded by lots of Google Quality bot hits at the same time!)

jkwilson78




msg:3591441
 12:17 am on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

I just want to know what they consider "slow" :-)

gawnd




msg:3591449
 12:28 am on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

Good find - thanks for sharing. I hate how they always tend to change/clarify things like this and then bury it in their documentation maze.

ewanfisher




msg:3591709
 9:47 am on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

Go here:
https://adwords.google.com/support/?fulldump=1

Then search that page for:
"load time affect my landing page quality"

I can't spot anything in the FAQ about load time at this URL?

aruns




msg:3591761
 10:52 am on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

Thanks for sharing.

ewanfisher: I found the question & answer for load time QS. Maybe you should try again - the page takes a bit of time to load though.

ewanfisher




msg:3591806
 11:36 am on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

Just checked again. It appears that this sections is omitted from the UK version of the FAQ. Try changing your language (top right) to "English (UK)".

Looking at this further, it appears that a lot of information in the US version is not in the UK version...

tedster




msg:3592187
 6:44 pm on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

This is an interesting develoopment, not the least because Steve Souders recently moved from Yahoo to Google after developing the YSlow tool - and also publishing a book about all the research work that went into it.

Check out this thread:
Speeding Up Your Site - best practices for the front end [webmasterworld.com]

jkwilson78




msg:3592237
 7:33 pm on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

Tedster,

I think you are on to something, in the section of the FAQ that talks about this, they link to the YSlow tool as a resource for more information.

AdWordsAdvisor




msg:3592259
 7:46 pm on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

I seem to have a morning full of meetings and other tasks, but wanted to jump in briefly with some clarification and further information.

Before I go on, though, the key information is that this is a planned initiative that has not yet launched. A precise launch date has not yet been set.

A bit more info:

[...] Well, towards the end I came across this stunner: [...]

What you came across, jkwilson78, is an outdated FAQ which was loaded into the Help Center in anticipation of a launch which has since been postponed a bit. Inadvertently, this FAQ was not removed.

The short story is this:

* Landing page load time will become an additional factor in determining landing page quality in the near future. An exact date has not been determined.

* A Inside AdWords blog post has always been planned to announce this in advance, to explain why it is occurring and outline the potential benefits to users and advertisers.

* At some point following the blog post, landing page load time will begin to be reported on the Keyword Analysis Page.

* Then, following that, several weeks will pass before load time starts to actually be factored into the Quality Score - so that advertisers will have time to make adjustments to their pages if they wish.

As an aside, now that the page load time initiative has been mentioned in this and other public forums, the Inside AdWords blog post is likely to be posted sooner rather than later - perhaps as early as this week. Once it has been published, although the WebmasterWorld terms prohibit me from linking to it, I will post the text of it here.

Makes sense to me- if your page takes forever to load, that to me is just as bad as poor quality content.

Glad to hear you say that, LifeinAsis - and agreed. As I've said a time or two in this forum in the past, if I land on a page that takes more than a moment or two to load, I'm both frustrated and gone. ;)

I hope this sets a few minds at ease - and my apology for the confusion caused by the FAQ which should have been deleted, but wasn't.

And, all that said, a very sharp eye you have there, jkwilson78. ;)

AWA

arindra




msg:3592305
 8:37 pm on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

nice , are you a official representative ?
If so , thats great :D

( yeah , i am sort of new here )

jtara




msg:3592335
 9:09 pm on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

I don't know why this is a "stunner". It certainly affects quality.

As for announcements from Google that get postponed (again, and again, and...) - par for the course.

We should consider ourselves lucky that Google was willing to share a bit of detail about their algorithms - they usually aren't.

jlara




msg:3592338
 9:16 pm on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

Gotta love when Google comes in to clarify. Thanks AdwordsAdvisor!

Helen




msg:3592339
 9:18 pm on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

It's not that adding page load as a Quality Score metric is a surprise... in fact it makes a lot of sense.

I think that the interest is probably more due to some accounts recently having more trouble with the Quality Score, and many people are at a loss as to how to deal with this effectively (at least it seems that way from the questions we've been receiving). Staying on top of these kind of changes can help prevent an overall campaign from suffering before the issue becomes a problem and has to be diagnosed.

H

carguy84




msg:3592370
 10:04 pm on Mar 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

Maybe you should try again - the page takes a bit of time to load though.

HAHA, ironic.

vincevincevince




msg:3592505
 1:52 am on Mar 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

If the same algorithm is used as for YSlow then that's good news for us - finally something we understand and can optimise for. Roll on A scores at YSlow!

What're the odds that this is or will be a factor in the organic results as well?

briggidere




msg:3592506
 1:54 am on Mar 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

I'm 100% sure it's already in the organic algo.

jkwilson78




msg:3592547
 2:35 am on Mar 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

I don't know why this is a "stunner". It certainly affects quality.

Well, I guess "stunner" in the context I used it is inaccurate. It definitely makes sense from a quality standpoint to use load times.

It was a stunner because I honestly expected not to find something new I haven't read numerous times before.

bw3ttt




msg:3592597
 4:21 am on Mar 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

It seems unfair.. The only time my server is slow is when their bots are pounding it.

aruns




msg:3592658
 6:36 am on Mar 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

Maybe you should try again - the page takes a bit of time to load though.

HAHA, ironic.

:) Cmon give the devil its due, it is the complete FAQ dump.

civgroup




msg:3592992
 2:51 pm on Mar 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

" It seems unfair.. The only time my server is slow is when their bots are pounding it. "

Then log into Webmaster Tools and slow the bot down.

bw3ttt




msg:3593383
 8:24 pm on Mar 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

Then log into Webmaster Tools and slow the bot down.

sigh.. We are talking about Adwords, not the SERPs.. the Adwords bot and the Adsense bot pound my servers.. Googlebot is banned from my Adwords destination URLs.

AdWordsAdvisor




msg:3593591
 1:08 am on Mar 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

Hi all,

Earlier I wrote:

[...] As an aside, now that the page load time initiative has been mentioned in this and other public forums, the Inside AdWords blog post is likely to be posted sooner rather than later - perhaps as early as this week. Once it has been published, although the WebmasterWorld terms prohibit me from linking to it, I will post the text of it here. [...]

I wanted to let you know that the Inside AdWords blog post that I mentioned above was published a short time ago. It's entitled Landing page load time will soon be incorporated into Quality Score.

I am just going to mention it, rather than quote it (as I previously said I would) - because it would lose all the links when copy/pasted - and they are useful.

AWA
----------------------------------
<off topic> Since I'm talking about the blog, you might also be interested in another (but unrelated) post from earlier today entitled Category Exclusion for the Content Network. </off topic>

potentialgeek




msg:3595011
 3:23 pm on Mar 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

It should help advertisers. If you get a click to your site, but it loads too slowly, you lose some potential clients, but still pay for the click!

p/g

jtara




msg:3595052
 4:45 pm on Mar 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Well, here is an opportunity for web designers (those that can design quick pages) and developers.

Let's call it the Google Web Designer and Developer Full Employment Act of 2008.

cagey1




msg:3595249
 9:41 pm on Mar 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

"Landing page load time will soon be incorporated..."

Another big Google Slap coming to a site near you...

Rehan




msg:3595291
 10:40 pm on Mar 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

AWA, I have some concerns about this quality score update, but I don't want to post the details publicly. How can I send feedback on this issue so that it reaches the right folks?

jtara




msg:3595309
 11:05 pm on Mar 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

Another big Google Slap coming to a site near you...

I have to disagree this time.

This is absolutely relevant to quality.

Now, if Google would stop catering to advertisers who use overly-broad terms and don't deliver anything relevant...

DanThies




msg:3595851
 11:38 pm on Mar 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

Adwords Advisor,

This is about "landing page quality," right? So, won't affect rankings on search ads. As on this FAQ page:
https://adwords.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=10215

briggidere




msg:3595853
 12:16 am on Mar 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

Dan,

It will affect search network ads. It's to do with quality score so all your ads/keywords will be taken into account.

This 41 message thread spans 2 pages: 41 ( [1] 2 > >
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