Understanding How Google Ranks Ads – Content Network

In the last post about understanding how Google ranks ads, we talked about how Google rank ads in the Search Network.  In this post, I was to discuss how Google ranks ads that you are bidding on in the Content Network.

We already know that they care about bid prices and quality score, and I’m pretty sure most of you realize by now that the higher your bid the better, but we also know that you can’t just bid extremely high cause you’ll lose money, thus, just like with the search network side, there are things you can do on the content network side to raise your quality score in order to get a higher position with a lower bid.  This will allow for higher profits margins and more traffic from being in higher ad positions.

So let’s take a look at a couple of the factors that affects your quality score on the content network side of Google.

  • The Ad’s Past Performance On The Site & On Similar Sites – Just as Google takes your ad CTR and stuff in to effect on the search network, they also take this in to effect on the content network.  However, the major difference is that with the content network, Google looks at it on a more site by site basis instead of across the board.  This means that maybe on one set of sites that are similar to each other you are getting a great CTR while on another set you aren’t doing as well.  Google most likely (it isn’t always the case) still give you a great position on the one set that is doing well, and will only penalize you for the sites you aren’t performing well on.
  • Relevance of Ads and Keywords to Site(s) – If you remember in the last post, the search network post, we said that Google looks at how relevant your ads and keywords are to your landing page.  On the content network, Google is more concerned at how well your ads and keywords relate to the website they are being displayed on and not so much on how well they match your website (landing page).
  • Your Landing Page’s Quality – Even though Google looks more closely at how related your ads and keywords are related to the website you are advertising on in the content network, they still care that you have a landing page that is of high quality.  There are tons of factors that determines if Google sees your landing page as a quality site or not, so the best I can do in this post is link to a page at Google about landing pages.

Those are the three main factors that Google takes in to account when determining your quality score for the content network side of Google Adwords!  You can see pretty easily that Google doesn’t have near the amount of stipulations for the content network as they do for the search network.

It’s a pretty well known fact that they are more strict on the search network then they are on the content network, however, it’s still imperative that you are using the above factors to your advantage when bidding on keyword or placement targeting on the content network.

In affiliate marketing most of the time, it’s the little things that boosts your ad over your competitors ad…the extra time you take that your competitor doesn’t!


  1. Interesting post. I haven’t advertised much on the content network due to concerns over click fraud. It sounds like you really have to analyze your stats for each site and only use sites that give appropriate pricing.

  2. You have click fraud no matter what, however, even with Google’s content network the click fraud is no where near the amount you’d receive if you were working with a 3rd tier search network like 7search or ask.com So it’s def worth still giving it a go!

  3. I don’t think that ppc or content network is useful. I haven’t used google adwords too since i tried it 5 years ago. they took your money and give nothing for my opinion. seo is the best solution to get hits and receive customers.

  4. Of course SEO is awesome, but it takes forever, I’d definitely recommend that you try Adwords again, it’s hard to get it down, but once you do, you’ll never find a better traffic source IMO besides free traffic of course 😛

  5. Targeting the Content Network in an effective manner is underutilized in my opinion. Also targeting specific Sites might get you some good CPC.

  6. Derek, i know the power of adwords as a source of hit but i couldn’t find a solution to drive more visiors with less money.

  7. Nice sharing!great info

    seed 🙂🙂

  8. Very interesting post. Thanks to your post now I am able to understand the importance of relevancy of ads and keywords to sites.

  9. Quality score is one of the big important part of ppc. It’s also helpful for increase conversion. Thanks for information about it.

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