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Impression Share report to help optimization

Mof Google Employee
Google Employee
# 1
Mof Google Employee
Google Employee

What is the impression share?
Impression share (IS) is the number of impressions you've received divided by the estimated number of impressions you were eligible to receive. Eligibility is based on your current ads' targeting settings, approval statuses, bids, and Quality Scores. Data is available at the campaign and ad group levels.

How to find it in the account?
The best place to view the most detailed impression share statistics are in your AdWords account.

1) Sign into your AdWords Account
2) Select the campaigns Tab
3) Select the campaign that you wish to view
4) Dimensions Tab
5) Columns > Customize Columns > Competitive metrics
6) Add Impr. Share, Lost IS (rank) and Lost IS (budget)
7) Click Apply  

What does it tell us?
From this report we can see how often our ad is appearing when eligible. As a rule of thumb having a search network impression share of over 90% is considered to be a successful campaign (please note a display network campaign is unlikely to have a very high impression share).

If the impression share is NOT 100%, the Lost IS (rank) and Lost IS (budget) will tell us whether we are losing impressions due to ad rank or due to having a budget that is too low.

Changes to be made based on this?
Based on the impression share report you can make some very important optimization decisions. For example, if the Lost IS (rank) is high, consider increasing your bids. If the Lost IS (budget) is high, consider increasing your budget.

Alternatively if your impression share is close to 100% and you are happy with your average position, you don’t really have to make any changes to the campaign/ad group.

*New Feature*
Since November 2012, you can now get more granular data in terms of impression share. Please see the blog post here. My favourite feature is within the dimensions tab using the “Hour of Day” report and finding out what times during the day your ads performing better or worse.

One last point to avoid confusion and panic Cat Very Happy
If you have a hybrid campaign (Display and Search Networks) consider adding additional columns to find out the split as the Display Network impression share is almost always going to be much lower.

1 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Impression Share report to help optimization

Community Manager
# 2
Community Manager

Thanks for the very informative post, Mof. 

 

Keep them coming, our users value them as much as we do,

Mini

Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by Mini-CM (Community Manager)
September 2015

Re: Impression Share report to help optimization

Follower ✭ ✭ ☆
# 3
Follower ✭ ✭ ☆

Hi there,

 

thank you so much for this valuable information, I took your advice and brought up the report for a few of my Campaigns. I did find one thing I didn't understand.

 

One of my mobile capaigns is showing 0% Lost IS (Budget) and >90% Lost IS (Rank). However, when I check my average position for this specific campaign I am sitting at 1.2

 

Shouldn't there be a correlation between the two? I would expect a lower ranked average with a high 'Lost IS (Rank) ' number.

 

Thank you! 

Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by topic author Mof
September 2015

Re: Impression Share report to help optimization

Mof Google Employee
Google Employee
# 4
Mof Google Employee
Google Employee

Hi DeBeenus,

 

Thanks for you question, I'm sure its affecting plenty of campaigns, thanks for highlighting it. 

 

The issue here is likely that one ad group or even one keyword is dragging down the impression share of the entire campaign. What we need to do is to identify the keyword in question and consider pausing/deleting it or increasing the bid on it. 

 

Best method to find this keyword

 

Ad Group First

1) Sign into AdWords Account

2) Select the Campaign in question

3) Selec the Ad Groups Tab

4) Columns > Customize Columns > Competitive Metrics

5) Add Impr. Share and Lost IS (Rank)

 

This will show us the impression share of each ad group. Rank the ad group high to low, by impressions for the data range. Select the Ad Group with the Impression Share of 10-25%. 

 

Once in the Ad Group we need to find the singular keyword. Unforunately we can't customize the columns to show us whilst in the keywords tab. For this reason, follow these steps

 

Auction Insights

1) Whilst in the Keywords Tab

2) Rank keywords high to low by impressions

3) Starting at the top of the list, check ONE keyword

4) Click Keyword Details > Auction Insights

5) Check the impression share of this particular keyword

6) Back to keywords, check box beside another keyword and repeat. 

 

Please note also on mobiles that there may not be more than 2 ads shown on some screens. Unlike a destop Google Search Results Page which can display 11 ads at any one time, mobile is always going to be much less. For this reason a seemingly high average position by desktop standards might not be that high by mobile standards. 

 

Hope this helps, 

Mof

Re: Impression Share report to help optimization

Follower ✭ ✭ ☆
# 5
Follower ✭ ✭ ☆

Hi Mof,

 

thanks again for your information.

 

The challenge I currently have is the fact I am using the Max Target CPA conversion method. Although this feature offers me many advantages, it prevents me from editing specific keyword bids. The bid is set for the entire Ad Group and that's it.

 

Thanks a lot for the tip regarding mobile, I found a bunch of ad groups in the 10 to 25% range and will be working on them. I do have one final question for you though.

 

If I look at the numbers shown after Step 1 (Ad Group first) and I am seeing an an Ad Group with an 76% Impression share, shouldn't the Lost Impression Share number be 24%? In this case the Lost Imp Share is > 90% which mindboggled me :-)

 

Some Ad Groups show a combined percentage of 100%, other though are similar to my example, for instance I have an Ad Group with a 14.78% Imp share and only 4.50% Lost Imp (Rank)

 

Thanks Mof, I am learning and learning :-)

Re: Impression Share report to help optimization

[ Edited ]
Follower ✭ ✭ ☆
# 6
Follower ✭ ✭ ☆

Hi Mof,

 

I have to correct myself, I found the issue regarding the 100% issue described above. The Campaign in question is targeting both Search and Display and for this reason the numbers are off. If I select Imp Share (Search) and Lost Imp share (Search) the sum is 100% :-)

 

Problem solved!

 

Thank you and have a great day!

Re: Impression Share report to help optimization

Follower ✭ ✭ ☆
# 7
Follower ✭ ✭ ☆

Hi there,

 

I happened to come up with another question, if it's inappropriate to ask using this Community feel free to tell me :-)

 

I added the Search Impression Share and the Display Impression share. What would you advise me to for one specific Ad Group when:

 

My Search Imp Share is 38%

My Search CTR over the last 3 months is 1.54%

My keywords all have a QS of 10/10

My Campaign budget is 5,000 a day

 

Thank you :-)

Re: Impression Share report to help optimization

Mof Google Employee
Google Employee
# 8
Mof Google Employee
Google Employee

Hi DeBeenus, 

 

It all depends on your goal. If we are looking for a higher impression share, consider pausing the keyword/keywords with low impression.

 

However, if we are just looking to drive more traffic then we need to look closer at the keywords. With a quality score of 10/10 and a CTR of over 1%, the keywords by and large seem to be performing very well. For this reason, The impression share statistic is just showing us that these keywords/ad group are missing our on potential clicks. 

 

With a quality score of 10/10 it could be a good idea to increase the bids on these keywords, as we are not going to get better value, as

 

Ad rank =  Quality Score X Mac CPC. 

 

In conclusion:

To increase the impression share of the ad group/campaign - Pause poor IS keywords

To increase traffic - Increase the bids on the poor IS keywords.

 

Hope this help, 

Marc