Google Adds Yet Another Way to AdWords Bowl

Every now and then Google adds new features that, supposedly, help users get a better experience from Google Search. More often than not, this has been a shameless attempt to explain some new hassle webmasters and Adwords advertisers must undergo so that Google can make a few more bucks.

The latest in this list is that Google AdWords will soon be rolling out a modification to the Quality Score based upon your landing page load times. This addition, while seemingly innocuous, actually makes it quite easy for a competitor to force your Quality Score lower, thus causing you to pay much more per-click.

All a competitor needs to do is send a ton of bogus traffic to your website and, voila, your page load times will increase due to server load and, subsequently, cause your quality score to go down.

Considering the bevy of cheap traffic sources out there (pop-unders, pop-ups, iframe traffic, etc.), this seems like a fairly cheap investment in the destruction of your competitor’s AdWords campaign.

Note: thanks to Bob Misita for pointing out that I had the word “increase” replaced with “decrease” in a very key part of my post.

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1 Comment

  1. Kurt
    Mar 12, 2008

    Could you please elaborate on this post, because I am just not seeing your point clearly. Did you mean to say that large-scale traffic bombardments from competitors will increase, not decrease, your page load times and consequently hurt your quality score?

    If so, do you really think enough competitors will use this uncouth tactic to make any substantial difference in, or destruction of, Google AdWords?

    I am no veteran to AdWords, so please let me know what you think!

    – Kurt

    Editor Reply: Kurt, thanks for your question. For most AdWords users, this will not be a problem. However, many of the more competitive niches which we operate it (and those in the SEM industry like us), “uncouth tactics” are quite common.

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