If you’ve been using PPC for a long time to increase your brand’s online presence, then you should know about the sheer volume of PPC metrics available. The problem is that these metrics are not created equal. Some of them have zero impact in terms of optimizing your paid search campaigns. Your goal is to distinguish which metrics matter for your business, and this primarily depends on your PPC campaign objective.
It’s never wise to rely on one metric as it often fails to paint the whole picture. If you have no idea where to start, this short guide should provide a useful starting point. You can also use this to tell whether the PPC company you’re working with really knows what they’re doing. Note that these metrics prove beneficial whether you’re in B2B manufacturing, B2C retail, local services, or ecommerce.
1) Cost per conversion
Ad Spend / Conversions = CPC
By monitoring your CPC, you can tell which campaigns are underperforming right away. You’ll spot which ones go beyond your acceptable cost per conversion. This metric also tells you how much the CPC varies from one campaign or ad group to another. You may also notice that some campaigns skew the average CPC.
Underperforming campaigns need to be dealt with as soon as possible. You can try optimizing these campaigns or reallocation your budget to one that yields better returns.
2) Conversion rate
Conversions / ad clicks = conversion rate
The conversion rate shows the highs and lows of each of your campaigns. This helps you compare how a particular campaign performed vs. the previous month, for example. If you notice a decline, gather more information to improve your short-term optimisation goals. Changing the Call to Action or updating the text on your landing page can be all you need to increase the conversion rate.
Keep in mind that not all conversions are the same. Converting a visitor to a free download is much easier than converting someone to the same trial version that first requires entering personal information.
3) Search impression share
Ideally, your paid search campaigns should be targeted at specific audiences based on their intent. You can look at the search impression share metric to determine whether you’re achieving this goal or not. If your ad shows up 80 out of 100 opportunities, that’s your search impression share. This number should be as close to 100 as possible. Your budget and quality score are the two most critical factors that influence this metric, so make the necessary adjustments as you see fit.
4) Search impression share lost due to budget
It can feel tempting to shell out more money in an attempt to see returns more quickly. But you should know that investing more in PPC doesn’t always equate to better returns. The “search impression share lost due to budget” metric tells you that you could convert more prospective customers if you only had a bigger budget.
Be careful, though, as this metric comes straight from Google. It’s unwise to assume that you’re going to get more conversions by merely increasing your ad spend. Remember that your budget allocation impacts other areas of your PPC campaign, so use more than one metric instead of making a hasty decision.