Conversions & Tracking – Conversion tracking is a powerful tool in AdWords that lets you identify how well your ad campaign is generating leads, sales, downloads, email sign-ups, and other key actions for your business.
The data recorded by conversion tracking allows you to identify which areas of your campaign are working and not working, so you can optimize your bids, ad text, and keywords accordingly.
PPC marketing campaigns are measured by how much traffic they generate and number of conversions that take place. Tracking this data allows you to know which:
- Keywords are profitable or unprofitable
- Ad groups are performing the best
- Ads have the highest CTR
And more. But it also allows you to carefully track your budget and conversions.
What is conversion tracking?
Conversion tracking is a free tool that shows you what happens after a customer clicks on your ads — whether they purchased a product, signed up for your newsletter, called your business, or downloaded your app.
What is a conversion rate in Google Analytics?
In Analytics, a conversion is the completion of an activity on your site that is important to the success of your business. For example: a completed sign up for your email newsletter (a Goal conversion) a purchase (a transaction, sometimes called an Ecommerce conversion)
Set up conversion tracking
With AdWords conversion tracking, you can see how effectively your ad clicks lead to valuable customer activity, such as website purchases, phone calls, app downloads, newsletter sign-ups, and more. Depending on the type of conversion you’re tracking, the setup process is different, so the first step in setting up conversion tracking is choosing a conversion source, or where your conversions come from.
In this article, we’ll talk about the different conversion sources, and then you can follow the instructions for the kind of conversion tracking you want to set up.
How it works
To tracking your campaigns you need to first add a piece of code to a page that signals a conversion has taken place. This could either be a “Thank You” page after purchasing an item or a page that visitors see after subscribing to a newsletter.
To get started, click Conversions under Tools and Analysis:
The following pages then describe how to get your tracking code to put onto your pages. You can then be able to track the results of your campaign in real time.
Which sets the stage for optimisation.
Choose a conversion source
Conversion tracking helps you see when your ads lead to conversions from the following sources. Click the links for instructions on how to set up the kind of conversions you want to track.
What it means: Track when a customer completes an action on your website. This could be, for example, making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, clicking a button, or any other valuable action a customer can take on your website.
- Set up conversion tracking for your website
What it means: Track when a customer installs your app or completes an in-app action, such as a purchase. Learn more about mobile app conversion tracking.
- Track mobile app conversions with Firebase
- Track Android app conversions
- Track iOS app conversions
What it means: Track when a customer calls you from a phone number in your ads or from a phone number on your website, or when they click your phone number on your mobile website. Learn more about phone call conversion tracking.
- Track calls from ads
- Track calls to a phone number on your website
- Track phone number clicks on a mobile website
What it means: Track when an ad click leads to a conversion in the offline world, such as a sale in your office or over the phone. To do this, you’ll import your conversions into AdWords by uploading a file or transmitting data through our API.
AdWords Conversion Tracking: The Basic Setup
Setting up conversion tracking involves generating a bit of HTML code in AdWords that you paste into the webpage on your site that customers visit immediately after completing the conversion (such as an “Order Confirmation” or “Thanks for Your Email” page).
To get started, click on the Tools and Analysis tab in AdWords, and select Conversions from the drop-down menu, which brings up the All conversions page. Click on the Conversions tab, then click the +Conversion button to create your first conversion.
You’ll be prompted to fill out a form that will help AdWords generate the appropriate HTML code for you to paste into your webpage.
Give the conversion a name, such as “Contact Form submissions” if you want to track how many times visitors fill out your site’s Contact Us form.
Next, select the source of the conversion. Your choices are:
1) Webpage. (If you want customers to complete an action on your webpage, such as an online purchase, contact form submission, or page visit.)
2) Call on-site. (If you want customers to call the phone number on your site from a mobile device.)
3) App download. (If you want customers to download your app.)
Here’s a more detailed walkthrough of each of the three conversion sources:
1) Webpage Conversions
Choose the most accurate conversion category from the drop-down menu: Purchase/Sale, Signup, Lead, View of a key page (i.e. the Contact Us page), or Other. (Click image to enlarge.)
Select the Markup language. HTML is the standard choice, but check with your web developer if one of the other alternatives (CHTML, XHTML, WML) would be more appropriate – especially if you’re running a mobile site.
Next, enter a value for the conversion. You can assign an amount manually, such as 10 if you’re selling e-books for $10 each. If you’re selling a lot of different products, you can also set up the conversion tracker to record shopping cart values that change dynamically on the site. (This feature is explained in more detail in the Advanced section below.)
Enabling the tracking indicator causes an unobtrusive message to appear on your site letting visitors know that their visits to your site are being tracked by Google. Displaying it is optional, and you can opt out of showing the message by selecting the “Don’t add a notification to the code generated for my page” option. If you do select it (by default, the selection is “yes”) you can replace the standard message with your own, and customize the message’s appearance by changing the size (single line of text vs. two lines), page background color, and language.
On the next page, you’ll receive an HTML code that you’ll need to paste into the page on your site that you want to track the conversion for, such as the “Thanks for Visiting” page. If someone else is responsible for making changes to your website, you can email them the code along with personalized instructions.
2) Call On-Site Conversions
If your website allows customers to call your business phone number directly from their smartphones, you can use conversion tracking to track the number of times a call is made. Go through similar steps above to generate your code, and then you’ll have to manually insert “onclick” HTML tags into the code provided by Google.
An onclick tag for a simple text phone number looks like this:
Replace the phone number with your company’s phone number, and the Call Now text with whatever text you’d like to use.
Onclick tags can also be used with buttons (again, replace the sample phone numbers with your own):
And when your Call Now link is a custom GIF image (replaced “call_now_button.gif” with the name of your gif file, and replace the example phone numbers with your own):
3) App Conversions
AdWords is able to track downloads of Android app through the Google Play store, and, to a limited degree, iOS apps through the Apple App Store. (Click to enlarge.)
NOTE: iOS app tracking is not available for Google Search or Google Display Network campaigns — only for the ads that are served in mobile apps through the Display Network.
To set up conversion tracking for an Android app, you will be asked for the app’s “Package Name.” To find it, go to the app’s page in the Google Play store. Copy the URL. The package number is the information after the details?id= string, and before the &feature= string. For example, the text highlighted in yellow in the example URL below is the Package Name:
Cut and paste that text into the Package Name box. To test that it’s working correctly, click on the “View in Android Market” link, and you should link through to the app’s page on Google Play. If you get an error or page not found, you’ve entered it wrong.
There is no further code to copy or paste for this one. Android app conversions should start tracking in about 24 hours.
Analyzing Your AdWords Conversion Data
You can see information about your conversions from the Campaigns tab at the ad group, ads, and keywords levels. Click the Columns tab, then Conversions, to customize which columns appear. (Click image to enlarge.)
Some of the basic columns include:
Conv. (1-per-click): Counts each time you receive one or more conversions from a single ad-click. You can use this number to approximate the number of new customers you’re getting.
Cost / conv. (1-per-click): Displays your cost (how much you spent on clicks) divided by your total conversions. This helps you measure your return on investment (ROI). Ideally, you should be spending less on clicks than you’re earning on conversions.
Conv. rate (1-per-click): Shows the percentage of clicks that resulted in conversions. The higher the percentage, the more effectively the ads or keywords are performing.
View-through conv.: Measures the number of times a customer viewed, but did not click on, your ad and later went through with a conversion.