Search Campaigns: Key Metrics (KPIs) for Successful Google Ads Campaigns

Smartphone con logo de Google Ads
Luciano Tirelli at Digital Jump

Author: Luciano

CEO at Digital JUMP

Search Ads

6 out of 10 users search online before making a purchase and, with a 92% market share, Google is the search engine with the most users globally. These data are a clear indication that the Google search engine is the perfect space to promote products or services and attract potential customers. However, for each search there may be certain advertisers competing to appear in the first results, so with so much offer you may not be getting the best results.

According to a famous phrase, “what is not measured, cannot be improved” and, at Digital JUMP we measure, learn and evolve. We believe in the value of data and make better decisions based on it. That is why we want to share what the Key Performance Indicators are that we monitor to achieve results.

Search Ads KPIs

Google Ads offers a variety of metrics, so you must consider and select which ones are relevant for each type of campaign and for the objective sought. Although the goal is always to achieve more leads or sales, achieving it involves optimizing campaigns to obtain results at the lowest possible cost. Below we describe the KPIs to monitor so that your campaigns are a success:

Impressions, clicks and CTR

Impressions indicate the number of times an ad was published, while clicks indicate the number of times, for the sake of redundancy, a user “clicks” on an ad to go to the website.

From the aforementioned variables, CTR (click through rate) is born, which is the rate of clicks over impressions. That is, if an ad has 100 impressions and 1 click, the CTR is 1%, while if it has 10 clicks it is 10%.

Why is this metric relevant? Because it tells us how effective our ad is in achieving the click. While there may be many factors that impact this metric, some of the most relevant are: campaign objective, competition, ad quality, and positioning.

Average CPC (cost per click):

As the name indicates, it is the average cost of each click on the ad. We do not always pay the same for each click, but it depends (as always) on various factors which may include: where and when the competition is auctioning, the budget, demand, seasonality and keywords.

Why is this metric relevant? Although it is difficult to benchmark CPC, it is a good indicator to understand how much you are paying to bring each user to the site. For example, a CPC of $100 is extremely expensive for an alfajores advertiser, but very reasonable for a high-end car advertiser. Metrics always have to be looked at in context!

Impression share (impression share):

It is the percentage of impressions that the ad receives compared to the potential impressions it could receive. Yes, conceptually it is one of the most difficult metrics to understand, but it is also one of the most useful so, let’s go with an easy example (and one that will be repeated throughout the entire post). Suppose we are bidding on the keyword [alfajores santafesinos] and today there were 100 searches, but our ad was only shown 30 times, our impression share is 30%. That is, it could have had 100 impressions (potentially), but in reality it only had 30.

But why does this metric matter? Because it allows us to understand if we have the capacity to cover more searches or if, on the contrary, we are searching in a market that is too large and we need to refine the keywords for which we are bidding. This last case can occur if, for example, we only sell alfajores from Santa Fe, but we are bidding on the keyword alfajores. In this case we are going to have greater competition and the impression share will probably be tiny, so it is a good indication that we need to gain participation by greatly improving the relevance and budget metrics or by shrinking the search market. And with this last example, we mention two linked metrics: lost impression share (rank) and lost impression share (budget). Both give visibility to why we are losing participation, but we leave them for later.

Top Impression Share and Absolute Top Impression Share:

Both metrics are similar to the previous one, but they do not speak exclusively of participation, but also of positioning. By definition, the Top Impression Share indicates the percentage of impressions achieved in relation to the possible ones, in positions above the organic results (that is, those that are relevant to the searched term but were not paid). The Absolute Top Impression Share indicates the percentage of impressions achieved in relation to those possible in the first position of results.

What is the relevance of monitoring these metrics? “The first three positions in Google search results get 70% of the clicks and the first 4 positions get 85% of the clicks.” Clearly, these metrics are key and impact the volume of impressions, clicks and CTR. The higher up your ads are, the more opportunities to get clicks.

Conversions, Conversion Rate and Cost per Conversion:

Depending on the objective you have configured in Google Ads for the campaign and the attribution model, you will be able to analyze the volume of conversions attributed to the campaign.

The conversion rate is the number of conversions over the volume of clicks. That is, if your conversion is a purchase and out of 100 clicks, you only made one purchase, the conversion rate will be 1%.

Why is this information important? Because it’s an indication of your site’s relevance to search. If you are managing to drive a lot of traffic to your site, but you are not achieving conversions, it is likely that your ad has confusing information or that users are looking for something that you do not offer (or that your site has problems achieving conversions, but we will see that in another post. ). For example, if you bid on the keyword alfajores and your ad was attractive enough, but it did not mention that you only sold a specific type of alfajores, users who enter looking for cornstarch alfajores will not convert when they see that you only offer Santa Fe alfajores.

Finally, the cost per conversion (sometimes referred to as CPA or cost per acquisition) is the total investments divided by the volume of conversions attributed to the Google Ads campaign. If you invested $1,000 and had 100 conversions, the conversion cost is $10. Why is this metric important? Because it is super useful to compare against the return of each product sold and analyze to what extent you are willing to invest to achieve more results.

Metrics to improve results.

We have already seen what are the key metrics to analyze for Google Ads Search campaigns. As we mentioned previously, the values ​​of each one vary according to multiple factors and you have to be flexible enough to understand each campaign in a specific context. Although we can do benchmarking, the numbers do not say anything on their own, we must analyze trends and consider all the variables.

However, indicators allow us to analyze the current status and make determinations to achieve better results. At Digital JUMP we monitor and optimize variables all the time because we know that this translates into tangible results. We never hesitate to review and rethink strategies until we find the formula that leads us to success. And this is what measuring, learning and achieving objectives is all about.

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