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High Lost IS (rank) + Good Avg. Position

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# 1
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How would you interpret Lost IS (rank) of 54% on a campaign that has an Avg position of 1.4. This is for a 60 day period. I would expect with position more favorable than 2.0 that the ad is getting shown most of the time (more than 54%) even if it shows on the bottom of the page. Any thoughts?

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Re: High Lost IS (rank) + Good Avg. Position

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# 2
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my first thought is what is the daily budget? Is it high enough to have the ads show 100% during the time/day you need them too? The 1.4 avg pos is great but that could only mean when your ad was eligible to been seen due to a possible limited budget

Re: High Lost IS (rank) + Good Avg. Position

Top Contributor
# 3
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@WebEminence;

I would look at the exact match IS - this is a more accurate metric to look into   the performance. The Lost IS includes in the denominator a broad number of additional auctions the system considers as available for your campaign, but you might not consider many of them as auctions you wish to participate in.

As for your question, the system might consider you should take part in a very competitive auction,  or on mobile devices which your bid or QS would exclude you from taking part in.

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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Re: High Lost IS (rank) + Good Avg. Position

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# 4
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Hi WebEminence,

There is no direct relationship between your average ad position and your Lost IS (rank). You may lose impressions to other advertisers at specific instances when competitors outrank you, unlike at favorable instances when they don't. The discrepancy arises from fluctuations in their bid values across those moments during the day as well as their budget constraints.

a. Their bids may heavily fluctuate during the day because lots of them avail themselves of automated bidding strategies, automated rules, scripts, and API algorithms; all of which result in frequent bid changes.

b. Their daily budget is in most cases insufficient to support their ads to participate in each and every available auction for impressions; for which reason they will do so only intermittently. Hence sometimes they will compete with you, and sometimes they won't.

Seems when they don't come, you can earn a nice avg ad position. - While I couldn't specify all possible example scenarios, just imagine a very simple one under which you have 6-8 heavy competitors whose budgets get depleted an hour before midnight; leaving you with an hour of grace to score fine avg positions coupled with a poor Lost IS (rank).

Best,
Lakatos
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Accepted by topic author WebEminence
September 2016

Re: High Lost IS (rank) + Good Avg. Position

Rising Star
# 5
Rising Star

I know I'm the last to reply but since I typed this out I'm adding my response as well:

 

Search Lost Impression Share (rank) represents the percentage of time that your ads weren't shown on the Search Network due to poor Ad Rank in the auction. The impression share denominator includes all auctions that the system estimates your ad was competitive for. For example, it could include auctions where your ad could show at twice its current bid, but could exclude auctions where your ad is estimated to need a 1,000% bid increase in order to appear.

Given that your Lost IS (rank) is 54% despite a strong avg. position I would say that one (or a combination) of the following things is occurring:

  • Negative bid adjustments: Many AdWords campaigns use broad targeting with negative bid adjustments based on device, location, time of day, etc. to control performance. For example, say that your campaign device settings have a -80% bid adjustment on mobile devices. Your ads average first position on desktop for all keywords but because your mobile bid adjustment is so negative you receive no traffic on mobile. If the system determines that you are still competitive on mobile then all the mobile impressions will be considered lost based on your low bid.
  • Broad and phrase match keywords: If your campaign contains a high amount of broad and phrase match keywords then this could inflate the Lost IS (rank) metric. For example, say that you have a $0.50 max cpc on the broad match keyword blue dress socks. When people search the term “blue dress socks” your ad may be in first position due to a lack of competition and a well-tailored ad and landing page. However, because this is broad match, AdWords could also determine that your ad is eligible to show on the search term “socks”. This search term will be too expensive for your ad to show with a $0.50 max CPC so you won’t receive any of the impressions on this term, however all of those impressions will count against your impression share if your bid is competitive according to AdWords. I would recommend to look at the exact match impression share metric to understand if this is an issue.
  • Granularity: Reviewing Impression share data at a campaign level can be misleading due to the fact that it’s aggregating all the keyword impression share data. For example, say that you have a campaign with two keywords. Keyword one is a low-volume branded keyword that you always rank first position on and keyword two is a high-volume non-brand keyword that you don’t rank on frequently. At the campaign level, the avg position would look strong because the majority of impressions generated are from the brand keyword that you rank first for. However, Lost IS (rank) could be very high because of how many impressions you would be eligible to receive if you increased your bid on the non-brand keyword. It would be more useful to analyze this metric at the keyword level.
Jim Vaillancourt, AdWords Rising Star, LinkedIn
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Re: High Lost IS (rank) + Good Avg. Position

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# 6
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@Lakatos

Thanks - I get what you're saying about there being no direct relationship. The two are related though in some respect which is what my question is based on here. I'm understanding that WHEN I do show, the position is pretty favorable, but I may not be showing a large % of the time due to fluctuations in competitors campaigns. Looking at time dimensions might help me sort this out in this case. I took a look and my position, impressions, and click volume is steady throughout every hour of the day except early AM when I expect it to go down.

Thanks for your input.

Re: High Lost IS (rank) + Good Avg. Position

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# 7
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Campaign is not limited by budget. Thanks

Re: High Lost IS (rank) + Good Avg. Position

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# 8
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@MosheTLV

Thanks - that makes sense. The Exact Match IS is close to 83%

Whether or not I WANT to be in the auction or it's desirable, I'm still at 1.4 avg position in the ones I'm competing in, but still missing out due to rank based on Lost IS number. So the original question remains.

Your comment makes me wonder about Search Partners which I did have enabled and how that may plan into these numbers.

Re: High Lost IS (rank) + Good Avg. Position

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# 9
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Thanks for the thoughtful reply. As I'm reading through, I think the granularity might be the biggest issue here. And the actual calculation of Avg Position is important. For example, an impression is "lost" it's obviously not showing and not even considered in Avg Position calculation. So it may be the different keywords I have in the Campaign/Ad group. So looking at the Ad Group and keyword level Lost IS (rank) is much more meaningful and now that I'm looking at them, they make more sense. It's the aggregation of the data at campaign level that is a bit confounding

Thanks again!

Re: High Lost IS (rank) + Good Avg. Position

[ Edited ]
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# 10
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Sorry - was replying below with another Google account. See my replies above as "Ryan B"