Like on Google Adwords, your Baidu PPC ads Cost Per Click (CPC) is heavily affected by Quality Score. We all know that to improve your quality score you need to improve the relevance between the keyword and ad copy, and between the keyword/ad copy and landing page, etc. But I am not here to explain the best practice of improving PPC Quality Score, instead to tell the unique attributes that constitute the Baidu PPC Quality Score.
First thing you need to know is that Baidu’s PPC Quality Score is a weighted score based on the scores for your website, Baidu PPC account and keywords. You can find that each level of your PPC account is quantified with stars by Baidu.
So to improve your quality score, you need to plan this strategically, rather than diving into optimizing the relevance at the beginning.
Top level – Website Quality Score
Apply a Trust Verification badge from Baidu Trust. Once it’s approved, your web pages will have a little “V” badge on your PPC ad of Baidu SERP. The V badge also has its own standard, which means a fresh verified Baidu account will start with V1, while other veterans may have V2 or V3.
Without a V badge, you cannot even make your ad on the top 3 ads (left-side) on Baidu’s SERP even bidding for your brand term with the highest bid. And PPC accounts with V3 definitely will beat V1 account on ad rank with the rest attributes (bid price, keyword relevance, CTR, etc) remained the same. Like the example below, Ctrip with V3 badge is beating Agoda with a V2 badge.
Other SEO metrics including website loading speed, ICP license, User Experience play their parts too.
2nd level – PPC Account Quality Score
PPC account’s quality score can be found at the leftdown side of your Baidu PPC account interface. The figure changes dynamically, along with the change of your keywords quality score. However it also changes according to the account overall behavior, for instance if the account is stable, whether it follow Baidu advertising rules, etc. So to gain a good quality score in account level, you might need to do the following.
Maintain Baidu PPC Account Continuity
To keep your quality score growing, you need to always keep daily budget in your account (even in a very small amount) to maintain your ad alive. Once you run out of budget, and your ad was suspended for more than 7 days, you’ll find quality score going down in each of the level. One of the clients had their account suspended for 30 days, and it took us another 30 days to regain their account quality score.
2. Follow Baidu Advertising Compliance
Baidu advertising rules are growing along with the newly released China Advertising Law in 2015. But there are some usual compliance issues most newbies encounter. Things like having superlative adjective, others’ trademark terms, politics terms in ad copy are not able to be approved by Baidu, even keeping them in the account does harm to your account quality score. So make sure all those prohibited keywords and ad copy eliminated from the promotional material section of Baidu Phoenix Nest.
3rd Level – Keywords Quality Score
To improve quality score of keywords level is all about improving the relevance of keywords and ad copy, and increasing CTR. In this case Baidu has a variety of features that you can play with to increase the score.
Wildcard in Ad Copy/Keywords Dynammic Insertation
Baidu suggests to use Wildcard and ad copy template, i.e. keywords dynamic insertation, by which the keyword triggering the ad will appear both in your ad’s tagline and description and mostly importantly they will be highlighted in red by Baidu. With that CTR will be improved and so will Quality Score for the keyword.
2. Rich Snippet: Multiple Ad Links, Image and Web-dial Phone Number
Baidu provides multiple ad links to other landing pages beside the main link to your main landing page on one ad if you manage to bid for the No.1 ad rank. By this alone, you can achieve 30% increase of CTR according to Baidu. And you can also add image, and web-dialable phone number, etc. to your ad to increase CTR too (example below).
There are many other ways to optimize Baidu PPC Ads, so are the metrics to measure performance. But focusing on improving quality score is definitely a sound metrics marketer should consider.
Kun has 10 years digital marketing experiences in Europe and China. His expertise includes SEO, Social Media, PPC and mobile marketing. He manages the strategy and business development of Jademond Digital. Pior to Jademond, he played provital roles in search marketing agency in Hong Kong, mobile marketing agencies in China and online video portal in Europe.