01 Feb 2013

Understanding PPC Conversion Tracking

February 01, 2013PPC Advertising

As a business owner, it is your job to make sure that you are securing customers and increasing your rate of sales. This is obvious; but how can you be sure about what is driving your traffic? When you use a number of keywords and ads to advertise your business, it can be difficult to know exactly what triggers your customers to click your ad and make a purchase. With conversion tracking, you can gain more insight into what tantalizes your audience and converts regular site visitors into new customers.

 Conversion tracking is a free tool offered by AdWords that shows you how your customers behave after clicking your ad. This could show you that they’ve made a purchase, registered for a free trial, subscribed to your email list or performed a number of other actions. These kinds of actions are called conversions because they have “converted” a regular site visitor into YOUR customer or subscriber. Regardless, this is information you ultimately need to know so you have the best understanding of where to invest your AdWords dollars.

 For example, if you owned a sporting goods store you may use phrases like “Minimalist Footwear” or “Running Shoes” to advertise the products you carry. Ultimately, you want to know which of these phrases is more effective in securing sales. By adding conversion tracking, you may discover that customers who clicked ads triggered by the search “Running Shoes” ultimately made more purchases from your site, while the people who click “Minimalist Footwear” were more likely to visit your site but leave before buying anything. Knowing this, you can make the decision to invest more money in the ads featuring the phrase “Running Shoes”. If these ads appear more often, then you will have more opportunities to snag new customers who are seeking that specific kind of shoe. This will help you craft more streamlined ad messaging while also boosting your ROI – two very important components of a successful campaign.

 When setting up conversion tracking for your keywords you are given two options: Conversions (1-per-click) and Conversions (many-per-click). The Conversions (1-per-click) option counts one conversion for every AdWords ad click that becomes a conversion in a 30-day time period. This means that within a 30 day period of clicking your ad, a user can only be tracked as completing one conversion, even if they complete multiple actions. If they were to register again, this click will not count under this kind of tracking setting. For this reason, this option is best used when you are trying to discover the number of new customers that you have obtained by counting those individuals who have registered on your site. This can be a valuable tool for gaining potential customer leads as well.

 The Conversions (many-per-click) option does the opposite by tracking every time a conversion is obtained from a user within the 30 days after an AdWords ad is clicked. This type of tracking tool is important when you want to measure the actual value of conversions, particularly for eCommerce sites where a user can make multiple purchases and each is valuable.

 As with any tracking tool on AdWords, you will have to allow enough time to gain a grasp on which ads are most successful. Using conversion tracking is a great way to gain insight into what interests potential customers. It also allows you to manage your search ad campaigns on a micro level because you are able to analyze individual sales. With time and patience, you will discover which ads are your moneymakers and you can boost your ROI by investing your dollars wisely into those specific ones.