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How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

[ Edited ]
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

I have a sales page with the company I sell for. I can use adwords to drive sales to the site on their domain but I'm not allowed to add a tracking code. Because of this I never know where my conversions are coming from until I get an order confirmation. I want to optimize my ad's key words and performance but not sure where to go. I have done a lot of how to videos through google adwords, youtube, and lynda.com but they all assume you are going to use a tracking code. Does anyone have any suggestions on a strategy for optimizing? Thanks

2 Expert replyverified_user
1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

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Marked as Best Answer.
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Accepted by topic author Nick B
December 2016

How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 9
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

@Nick B

 

A splash page and landing page (how I am referencing it) are different. I can understand their hesitancy against a splash page. A splash page is one of those pages that really doesn't have much in the way of content, just usually a "Click here to enter" type of option. The purpose is limited. One I can think of is when I go to FedEx's site (after clearing cookies) I land on a splash page asking me to choose a location before I can proceed.

 

When I reference you hosting a landing page on your own domain, I am talking about something that is putting the product/service/etc in focus.

 

I don't know what your product is, but let's say it's software. Your landing page might give them brief information about the software/benefits/value prop, then the CTA would be for them to check out the demo, which would reside on the company's website. They click the link and the event tracker fires. Now you have data.

 

This isn't about optimizing, but you could then even take it a step further and use a squeeze page and capture the lead before sending them off to the demo on the other company's site.

 

If it's truly not an option, and you really meant any landing page, then really it's just a matter of narrowing it down to find those keywords driving the conversions. It's just a major headache without transparency. Whenever I have done this in the past I started the way I mentioned above.

 

Setting it up properly is so important. It's going to become cumbersome regardless, but without a good set up you will pull your hair out.

 

I would make sure to first go through my search term report to pull any keywords I need to bid on, and those I need to add as negatives. If you haven't been doing this long (not much in the search term report), then I would recommend you perform exhaustive keyword research.

 

Also, if you don't have enough history then you won't have anything to compare it to. So you need conversions first. Not to mention, if you don't receive a lot of conversions currently, it's going to take a long time to see if any impact is being made in most cases. It won't be obvious that pausing a certain object caused the change. 

 

Ok, so I tend to build accounts from modified broad match (MBM) and exact match keywords. I would take all the keywords and create a campaign(s) for each match type. More than one campaign if your structure calls for it (I'm going on the assumption you know best practices). 

 

I would then take the exact match keywords add them as campaign negatives to my MBM campaigns.

 

Now, start the process I mentioned previously with just the exact match campaigns. This will take away most of the issues of doing it with phrase/broad match keywords (i.e. generating conversions from keywords you aren't directly bidding on).

 

When you get to groups and keywords, start with the groups/keywords that have the most click volume. Because you have no transparency, you will have to do it one at a time. The good news is the higher volume keywords should give you relatively faster insight.

 

As you determine the impact of the keyword tested, enable/pause it and move to the next highest volume.

 

 

 

 

Even after you do all that...that doesn't take into account seasonality, time of day, the ads being run, etc.

 

If that's the way you go, I don't envy the task in front of you. Best of luck.

 

David

View solution in original post

How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 2
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

You are pretty limited with having access to place a tracking code on the 3rd party site. Are you driving them to a domain you control first, then they click through to the company? Or do your ads point directly to the sales page on their site?

 

Ultimately, I would recommend running to your domain first (even if you have to set one up and copy the sales page from the other domain...with permission). I would set up event tracking to capture outbound link clicks. This will tell you which sources are moving onto the next step in the process (more info, adding to cart, etc). It won't give you conversions, but it would at least give you an idea on which keywords/ads are driving more qualified traffic.

 

If you are currently direct linking I would also say test what I said above against direct linking before just abandoning your current tactic.

 

 

Otherwise, all I can think of is blind testing, which can quickly become overwhelming, even with a modest sized account. What I mean by blind testing is if you are seeing enough conversion volume, start pausing campaigns, one at a time, for a certain amount of time/clicks lost.

 

See if your sales drop with a specific campaign paused. If it does, then you know something in that campaign is driving some of your conversions. Then, start with ad groups within that campaign (most click volume first). Then, keywords within the groups that are driving conversions. Until you finally narrow it down to the keywords that are driving conversions.

 

Best of luck and I would love to see what others have done in these scenarios.

How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

Participant ✭ ☆ ☆
# 3
Participant ✭ ☆ ☆

Hi @Nick B

 

I would recommend, aside from @David G good recommendations, that you link Google Analytics and adwords and import them in? I am presuming you have access to GA? If their GA set up is limited, you could always create you own view and create your own goals so long as their URL structure allows you to do so (presuming you use URL based rules here of). It may be also possible to import smart goals if also if GA and Adwords are linked, which changes things slightly and allows you to possibly use some flexible bidding strategies based on these smart goals. This could be a really exciting option. 

 

My other suggestion, would be to see if you can convince them to use Tag Manager, which allows just 1 implementation and you can set up your own tags. 

 

Hope those suggestions are also of help? If some of the above is a little confusing, post and tag me again and ill try and answer Smiley Happy

 

James

 

James

 

 

How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

Top Contributor
# 4
Top Contributor

What type of site is that? Is   recording conversions  offline  possible?

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
Did you find any helpful responses or answers to your query? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer’

How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 5
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hey @David G,

The company I sell for advises against having a splash page then directing to the site, so I have no domain control.  I'm currently blind testing my key words and I'm down to one ad right now.  (blind testing 5 ads at once was hard) Any suggestions for a system for testing key words?

How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hey @James Edw Goode

Right now I'm not using Google analytics.  Since I don't have any domain control over the site, I can't use the tracking code.  I thought to use GA you need to have tracking code on your landing page?  Is there another way to use GA without a tracking code?  Thanks

How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 7
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hey @MosheTLV thank you for jumping in.  I'm not sure what type of site it is but here is our landing page. www.jafra.com/beauty-consultant/claudiabennett/.  We get notified of sales but without asking each of our customers what keywords they used, I'm not sure how to track what keywords are working.  The method I have been using is basically make an ad, select a number of keywords, delete the keywords with the lowest CTR then add new ones.  What do you think is a better way to do it?

How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

Top Contributor
# 8
Top Contributor

@Nick B;

Neat site. 

This is an eCommerce site. You need to track the user's funnels and online conversions. Analytics is desired (and essential) here. Otherwise, you will not be able to  analyze and optimize the campaign. 

Why don't they allow to install GA code on the site?

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
Did you find any helpful responses or answers to your query? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer’
Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by topic author Nick B
December 2016

How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 9
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

@Nick B

 

A splash page and landing page (how I am referencing it) are different. I can understand their hesitancy against a splash page. A splash page is one of those pages that really doesn't have much in the way of content, just usually a "Click here to enter" type of option. The purpose is limited. One I can think of is when I go to FedEx's site (after clearing cookies) I land on a splash page asking me to choose a location before I can proceed.

 

When I reference you hosting a landing page on your own domain, I am talking about something that is putting the product/service/etc in focus.

 

I don't know what your product is, but let's say it's software. Your landing page might give them brief information about the software/benefits/value prop, then the CTA would be for them to check out the demo, which would reside on the company's website. They click the link and the event tracker fires. Now you have data.

 

This isn't about optimizing, but you could then even take it a step further and use a squeeze page and capture the lead before sending them off to the demo on the other company's site.

 

If it's truly not an option, and you really meant any landing page, then really it's just a matter of narrowing it down to find those keywords driving the conversions. It's just a major headache without transparency. Whenever I have done this in the past I started the way I mentioned above.

 

Setting it up properly is so important. It's going to become cumbersome regardless, but without a good set up you will pull your hair out.

 

I would make sure to first go through my search term report to pull any keywords I need to bid on, and those I need to add as negatives. If you haven't been doing this long (not much in the search term report), then I would recommend you perform exhaustive keyword research.

 

Also, if you don't have enough history then you won't have anything to compare it to. So you need conversions first. Not to mention, if you don't receive a lot of conversions currently, it's going to take a long time to see if any impact is being made in most cases. It won't be obvious that pausing a certain object caused the change. 

 

Ok, so I tend to build accounts from modified broad match (MBM) and exact match keywords. I would take all the keywords and create a campaign(s) for each match type. More than one campaign if your structure calls for it (I'm going on the assumption you know best practices). 

 

I would then take the exact match keywords add them as campaign negatives to my MBM campaigns.

 

Now, start the process I mentioned previously with just the exact match campaigns. This will take away most of the issues of doing it with phrase/broad match keywords (i.e. generating conversions from keywords you aren't directly bidding on).

 

When you get to groups and keywords, start with the groups/keywords that have the most click volume. Because you have no transparency, you will have to do it one at a time. The good news is the higher volume keywords should give you relatively faster insight.

 

As you determine the impact of the keyword tested, enable/pause it and move to the next highest volume.

 

 

 

 

Even after you do all that...that doesn't take into account seasonality, time of day, the ads being run, etc.

 

If that's the way you go, I don't envy the task in front of you. Best of luck.

 

David

How do I run an adwords campaign with no tracking code?

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 10
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

I started typing my long post before you posted this so I wasn't aware of the type of site. Yes, Moshe is right. You really need some sort of deeper analytics here. I would say that in all cases, but in ecommerce it's extremely tough without.