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My adwords click and conversion counts are 4X higher than they are in GA.

Not applicable
# 1
Not applicable

I am running a remarketing campaign in Adwords and noticed that the click and conversion counts are way higher than the corresponding impression & conversion counts in GA. I would be OK with a 15-20% delta to account for the 30 day post-click window for conversions, but I'm seeing a 4X difference. The delta was compounded when we changed the campaign from a manual CPC bid to a Target CPA bid.

Any ideas why?

1 Expert replyverified_user

Re: My adwords click and conversion counts are 4X higher than they are in GA.

Rising Star
# 2
Rising Star

Welcome to the community!

I completely understand your view here and I would just like to say that as must be aware, GA & AdWords work on different Attribution models. AdWords works on a first clicks attribution & GA works on Last click which implies for AdWords every person who clicked on an ad and then converted within the stipulated 30 day look back window, the lead is attributed to AdWords where as for GA, it looks at all the mediums that the user interacted with and attributes the lead/conversion to the last medium that helped complete the conversion.

Seeing as you are running a Remarketing campaign, the user is exposed to your ads multiple number of times across the GDN or Search Network (if you are running a RLSA campaign). Due to the fact that your users are shown the ads repeatedly, they may just decide to click on the ad or go directly to your website to convert. This I believe leads to the delta that you are seeing in the numbers across the two platforms.

Lastly, you will always see a difference in the numbers reported by the two platforms in questions due to the attribution model they operate on.

Hope this Helps!

Shashank Singh, AdWords Rising Star |
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Re: My adwords click and conversion counts are 4X higher than they are in GA.

Not applicable
# 3
Not applicable
Thank you for the quick response. This makes sense and I was aware that they use different models. I just didn't think they would be that far off. Is it also just coincidental that the delta grew a lot when we moved from CPC to CPA bidding?

Re: My adwords click and conversion counts are 4X higher than they are in GA.

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 4
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆



4X is a huge difference in clicks and conversions between Adwords and Google Analytics numbers.


Ideally, you should not see any difference in the clicks if you are using auto-tagging in Adwords or all of your campaign URLs are properly tagged. Please check it again at your end.


 I would also suggest you to check for the conversion tracking on Google Analytics and Adwords. In my views, conversion difference should not be more than 15-20% between GA and Adwords. 


For this 15-20% conversions discrepancy between Google Adwords and Analytics, there are lot of possible reasons:


1. Attribution source: Google Analytics follows the last non-direct click attribution while Adwords attribute the conversion to the last click on its ads.


For example, A person visits the website after clicking on a Google ad but did not make any conversion. If he comes later on the site after clicking on Facebook Ad and makes the conversion, then Analytics will attribute this conversion to Facebook channel but the Adwords will attribute the conversion to its ad where the last clicks came from.


This results in lesser no of Google attributed conversions in Analytics in comparison with Adwords platform conversions.


2.Attribution Time: Google Analytics reports the conversion on the day it happens while Adwords reports it on the day of the click.


3. Reporting Freshness: Adwords report get updated quickly while Analytics takes longer time. This results in less no of conversion in GA.


There are some other reasons as well like different conversion tracking in Adwords and Google Analytics; different conversion setting like one conversion and every conversion. You can read about them in details using the following link:


Please let me know if you need any further help.


Re: My adwords click and conversion counts are 4X higher than they are in GA.

Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆
# 5
Explorer ✭ ✭ ☆

This is a frequent question of advertisers and clients: why is adwords and analytics data different despite the same time periods?

The answer is the attribution model each platform is using. AdWords gives credit to the last ADWORDS click, meaning even if a user clicked on an ad, and later went directly to the website (a direct click conversion), the attribution of that conversion goes to the last AdWords click every time.

In Analytics, the platform uses a last click model across all channels and sources. This means in the example above, Analytics would attribute the conversion to a direct source click rather than an adwords click. With remarketing it can get even more complex as display is a common use of remarketing, which can lead to view-through conversions and other brand awareness based performance.

Also, keep in mind if you are using analytics goal imports that the data can be delayed by up to 2 days meaning conversion counts could end up being higher than adwords for the corresponding period because they haven't imported into adwords yet.

Let me know if that helps or if you have more questions!



Re: My adwords click and conversion counts are 4X higher than they are in GA.

[ Edited ]
Not applicable
# 6
Not applicable

Thank you. This makes sense but as @DEEPAK G mentioned, 4X seems like to big of a delta to be explained by attribution methods. And since the same delta applies to clicks, which are not affected by attribution, I am wondering if something else is going on. Why would Adwords show so many more clicks than GA?  I also forgot to add that I was not including view through conversions in my number - only converted clicks.  Could multiple conversion pixels on the confirmation page be a factor?