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What is the one most important statistic you'd look at every morning in your AdWords account & why?


There is a different perspective of every individual while looking at an Adwords account to start his/her day. Some prefer conversions, some start with looking at the cost and many look at cost/conversion. 


Let's look at the various comments from different Adwords experts who shared their views in an interesting conversation which was part of the old forum...


Valued Member Adam said:


I'd be looking at my cost/conversion for sure. It's my way of measuring if the campaigns are working the way I need them to. If they aren't hitting my target figures I need to do some work on them.


Clicks are vital as well because if I am not getting clicks, I can't get conversions. If I'm not getting clicks I might need to look at my budget & billing as well.


TC Scott had the following views:


I would have to agree with purefuzz too. It is obviously important to check the other statistics to ensure that the campaign is operating to it's full potential but at the end of the day a profit has to be made. If the cost per conversion and total conversion targets are being hit then you can then move onto improving things like CTR to help reduce costs further with the aim of increasing the quality score. 


A combination of statistics is obviously important though and all contribute to the end goal, being conversions, at the end of the day. As purefuzz stated, a lack of clicks can lead to a lack of conversions, a poor CTR can result in lower positions and higher costs which results in a higher cost per conversion, mismanaged placements can lead to wasted budget, etc. It is vital that the account is viewed not just as a single sales statistic but instead managed as a complete project due to everything being influenced with one another.



Senior Member Shweta said:


Definitely CPA.... as a business owner,, this is something that would affect me the most.

The second important thing from a PPC perspective would be Impressions, clicks and Cost... just to see that there has been no major fluctuation in the daily numbers.

Variation could be because of external seasonal factors or changes that I performed the previous day like addition of negative keywords, increasing bids etc.. so as an overview, I'd chk if nothing had adversely affected my campaign.


Valued Member Tome Hale Junior had the following to share with:


For small business owners with very limited budgets, the most important factor many of our clients are concerned with is cost. If you as an account manager are lucky enough to have a client who can, and will, work with you to establish conversion/sales metrics, and values for those sales (ecommerce for shopping cart/product sites), and is willing to spend as much on adbuy as is profitable, then yes, costs would be less of a concern than profitability. Who in their right mind would want to leave money on the table? 


If on the other hand, after years of effort, you are still unable to establish actual ROAS, but earn the trust of your client, what can you do as an account manager but spend the budget in what you think is the most profitable manner? If you can't really establish value with your clients, how do you even know that a conversion is profitable? Which is why call metrics can be such a revolutionary adwords tool. Ah, there's the rub... If I don't know, or cannot establish conversion value, what will prove to my client that adwords is worth spending a dime on? Calls in the office, that I can prove came directly from their adwords adbuy! None (to the best of my knowledge) of Google's competitor's can offer this same service. Conversion value and ROAS aside, "I got X number of calls this week" may finally help convince the client that (although they trusted us as account manager's that this was always the case, to some degree) adwords is worth the money. Call metrics, more than anything else may convince millions of $5-$20 a day (I did sayvery limited budgets) advertisers that they are leaving money on the table, and should increase their adbuy with Google.



Tom Hale Senior contributed with his following comments:


 AdWords management, strategy, and tactics, are so circumstantial that trying to think of one stat as "most important" kind of breaks my mind.


Plus, being the opinionated wonk that I am, I often fear that Top 10 lists and "most important" generalizations give a wrong impression to neophytes. So much of AdWords management depends on the situation.


As Tom Jr. alludes, if you happen to have solid value-profit metrics (conversions, goals, ecommerce, etc) - no brainer. All other stats serve the primary value metrics. But there is a whole lot of AdWords advertising going on out there where solid value-profit metrics are far from established.


If I may twist the game a bit. It might be useful to talk about what I first look at when assessing a new account. Again our own best practices are hard to set aside so I have to say that prior conversations with clients/prospects drive my initial analysis. What I would look at first if I didn't have solid profit-value metrics in place, and circumstances were not dictating otherwise?.... well that would be Quality Score.


I can tell a lot about an AdWords situation with a quick Quality Score survey. All other stats aside, Quality Score is a kind of grade. Bemoan the accuracy and/or fairness of that grade all you want. It is a reality that must be taken into consideration when managing an account. It can determine strategy, although poor QS words can be profitable/valuable in many situations so don't optimize just to QS. But QS is a great overview stat when it comes to assessing how tough it is to squeeze profit out of your current ad buy.


TC Calin came up with the underneath aspects of looking at an Adwords account:


I agree with the fellow forum members who've posted above in quite a high proportion.


On E-commerce websites, I'm looking at:


- cost per conversion

- value per conversion

- conversions

- cost

- total converted value

- lost impression share


I'd like to see cost very close but under daily budget, lost impression share very low, and a ratio of value / cost per conversion which is good enough for me to think that the estimated ROI is ok (I know an average margin per conversion per website, and I know the multiplying factor that is necessary between cost and value per conversion in order for things to go well). Even if total converted value looks good, if the ratio value / cost does not look nice. So yes, a CPA of 1 may sound nice, but only if the value per conversion is 10 and above, if my average sales margin is 10%.


Apart from that, the higher the value per conversion, the better, as a lower number of conversions is better in the end. There's no use making the same totals as last month with people needing to work overtime in order to ship everything out. Too many orders for the same monthly figures can decrease your margin substantially, I have seen.


As for the call metrics, I fully agree with Tom Jr., but living in a country far away from Google HQ Smiley Happy made me resort to the "poor man's call metrics", and that was phone number switching for adwords clickers, so at the end of the day I had a chat with the customer and he told me the number of clients he made via AdWords, and I told him the budget that the campaigns have eaten that day, and reassured him we're on the schedule with that.


I do peak at CTR and QS on E-commerce websites, but that's at second glance, not first. And somehow I always end up in Excel, no matter what. That is until Google will integrate the spreadsheets fully with AdWords and we'll be able to take the AdWords tables and append columns and rows of our own Smiley Happy.



Everybody covered up the statistical significance of all the important statistics very well. I would only like to back my fellow members and would summarize by highlighting some features like cost/conversion, cost, conversion, phone calls (using call metrics) to be the important ones which are worth looking at, inside your Adwords account to start with your day.



Posted by Pankaj Sabharwal

about Pankaj Sabharwal

I am a Google AdWords lover. Always excited to learn something new about it. I am always engaged with the AdWords Community and love to interact and solve the problems to the best of my knowledge if I can.

November 2012

Great collection of views pankaj thanks Smiley Happy

pankaj1782 Top Contributor
November 2012

@ theniks, my pleasure Smiley Happy

PPCBossman Top Contributor
November 2012

Nicely done Sir Pankaj....wouldn't it be great to get Avinash in on this discussion...haha Smiley Happy

pankaj1782 Top Contributor
November 2012

@ Sir Tommy, I would love to hear from him (Avinash) Smiley Wink

November 2012
Well, I also look at cost, conversion everyday to start with. So I am with the experts on this
November 2012
I look through the conversions at first look.
December 2012

Great information.  Thanks for compiling this and sharing!  I was wonderinf if there is a measure called something like CPConversion$ (Cost per conversion $).  That would be the cost per $ brought in by a conversion.  If a conversion brought in a profit of $1,000.00 that would be worth a lot more than if it only brought in $100.00 profit.  I hope to be able to track the CPCoversion$ and therefore know my ROI for AdWords.

December 2012

I would look at CTR. QS is not working too well as a guide, because my low QS words are bringing in the conversions.


By aiming for a high CTR, I am also able to ensure my ads achieve a better position.

PPC Tuneup
December 2012

There are many things that we check in the morning within the Account and keeps changing as per the different scenario framed by the clients.


But in general case the first look is always the same..CONVERSIONS..and thats our main goal no matter what.


Besides conversions i will also consider at the CPA as well, which plays a huge role in acheiving the ROI based results...The CPA will be judged as per the clients criteria OR as per my knowledge which i feel that is good in a particular case.



Azeem Shaikh