AdWords - Stumped over low QS
I am totally frustrated with AdWords because I cannot seem to find what is causing such a poor Quality Score. Each and every keyword (over 100) is inactive for search with a required minimum bid of $10.00. (I know what you must be thinking, that I am just another noob who could not be bothered with reading the directions.)
I have spent much time reading the instructions, reading the help files, reading offsite guides, writing emails to support staff, and I am still completely baffled over how to fix this. Everyone keeps telling me to read the help files. The support staff keeps sending me the same standard form letter referring me to the help files. I feel like I am stuck in an endless loop analyzing the same problems and not seeing the forest for the trees. Let me tell you where I have been.
I started up a new campaign for the site in my sig. I used keywords regarding audio auctions, audio equipment, buying and selling used gear, and some common industry shop talk. My campaign ran fine for an hour or two and suddenly stopped with all inactive search words demanding $10.00 each. I cannot afford anywhere near $10 per click so, I cannot raise my bid.
I spent the whole first week attempting to tweak things but could not get any keyword to become active short of buying my way there. Eventually, after exhausting other resources, I started deleting keywords until something changed. Alas, I have gotten all the way down to one single keyword and it still shows poor QS and inactive for search. (NOTE: I have only one Campaign containing only one Ad Group which now only has one keyword in it.)
To take it one step further I deleted the entire campaign and created a new one with a single keyword. It still gave me the same inactive results. I started creating new (and unique) keywords again to see what would happen. I went through close to 100 new relevant words and phrases. It seems that no matter what keywords I choose, they all instantly jump to “inactive for search” status with a required minimum bid of $10.00. Eureka! This would indicate that the Keywords are not directly the problem.
Ok, moving on...According to the docs, a low QS can be from several factors. Poor CTR performance, poor landing site quality, ad text and landing site relevance.
So I took a closer look at these topics one at a time.
1. The CTR column shows zero or no data which means this keyword has never been active. All past poor-performing keywords have been deleted so they should no longer “infect” the ad group. They have never been in this new campaign/ad group anyway.
2. My ad text has the entire keyword phrase in it exactly verbatim. I'm thinking this is not the problem either.
3. To prove that my keyword is relevant to my site, I used the “Site Related” keyword tool. This tool goes to your landing page and scans for relevant content and then suggests keywords based on its findings. I found the keyword phrase that I am already using in the list. I am satisfied that it is relevant. It appears about 21 times in my site content.
4. The last problem I can imagine would be the general quality of my landing page. I am not sure, but I think it is a well developed site. Can anyone take a look at it and let me know? I am not asking for a website review. I only want to be “clued in” if it is indeed a bad user experience, (as Google would put it.)
I am seeking suggestions of what to try next? As I said at the start, I am stumped.