Google Ad Grants provides $10,000 worth of in-kind AdWords advertising each month to qualifying nonprofits. This free, text-based online advertising has helped spread the word for so many amazing causes. Those of you who manage Google Grant accounts might have noticed this new policy update. As of June 2017, Google has begun enacting a “quality filter.”

What Does This Update Mean?

Studies have shown that Ad Grants ads have been of a “disproportionately” lower quality standard than non-grants search ads. To address this issue, Google updated its algorithm to stop running ads of low quality. To clarify, “low quality” refers to a low quality score on your pay-per-click ad—Google’s rating of quality and relevance.

While this update is new, Quality Scores are not. Be sure to check your Quality Scores on your keywords. If you see relatively low quality scores, you should address those. Here’s how to check.

Brush-up: What’s a Quality Score?

Quality Score is determined by a ranking system of keywords from 1–10. One is the lowest and ten is the highest score you can receive; it’s very difficult to receive a ten. Essentially, the higher your Quality Score, the lower you will pay per click. Conversely, the lower your Quality Score, the higher you’ll pay per click. Quality Score also affects ad rank (where on the page your ad is shown—or if it even appears at all).

Steps to Discovering Your Quality Scores

  1. At the top of the screen, click on your Keywords tab.
  2. Click on the Columns tab
  3. Select Modify Columns
  4. Select Quality Score
  5. Scroll down and click Apply

Steps to Discovering Your Quality Scores

Steps to Discovering Your Quality Scores-2

And that’s it! Now you will able to view your quality score on each keyword.

Dissecting the Quality Score

Your quality score is broken down into three components: Ad relevance, Landing page experience and Expected CTR. To view these, follow the same steps above, except this time, before you click apply, select Ad relevance, Landing page exp. and Exp. CTR.

Great! Now you’re ready to see where your quality score can improve. Here’s what it looks like when applied.


Dissecting the Quality Score-2Each column relates to which portion of where your Quality Score health resides. Google is not clear about what defines low quality, but if you’re concerned about that quality filter, then it’s advisable to make sure all three columns at “average” or better to help ensure they’ll show your ad. Wordstream offers great advice for improving your Quality Score.

Tweak and Test Your Ads

You should be taking measures to ensure you’re not just “setting and forgetting” your account, which can be detrimental to your ad showing up. This new update will drive teams to actively manage their accounts and improve upon them. Be sure to review your status columns and Avg. Pos. columns to see if you’re even making in onto the first page of Google and in which ad slot.