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Optimizing for specific conversions

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi all, 


This is my first post, the result of a long search yielding no answers. So forgive me if I have failed to find the right information elsewhere.


I have a large adwords account consisting of over 800 ad groups, most of which I have automatically generated for geographic relevancy in ad content. This strategy has served me well, resulting in a CTR of 10%+ and great onsite conversion. The problem is that I now want to optimize my budget and bid allocation in regard to conversions for specific ad groups that are performing above average. I have set up conversion tracking that relies on Analytics Goals, however, I have many goals and in reality I want to be able to optimize in regard to just a few at a time.


What I want to do is analyze ad group specific conversion costs for 2 out of 8 goals, and if possible, I would like to track the underlying events instead of the goals. I have not found a way to do this. Right now I have crafted a google sheets analytics report that grabs all my ad groups, calculates how many of these 2 events that each ad group has generated, and get what I call my CPL (cost per lead), from there. This is quite tedious and prone to errors over time so my hope is that this can somehow be set up directly in Adwords.


Doing this in google sheets gave me some really great insights regarding my actual CPL, so I'm really hoping there is a way to make this process even easier. 


Thank you in advance for the help,





1 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Optimizing for specific conversions

Community Manager
# 2
Community Manager
Hi Viktor,

Thanks for posting to the Community! Sounds like there's a lot of variables here so I'm going to first try and break it down into a few key pieces to make sure I'm understanding you correctly, and then we can figure out if there's a way to do what you'd like to!

So from what I understand, you want to:

1. Look at cost per conversion on an ad group level, using only 2 out of your 8 tracked conversions
2. See events rather than goals in AdWords
3. Use this info to determine bidding and budgets across campaigns

Is that correct?

Re: #2, there is not a way to import events into AdWords--you can only import Google Analytics goals or Transactions.


Re: Optimizing for specific conversions

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

HI Cassie,

Thanks for the help, your list accurately describes my intentions. Let me explain in more detail exactly how I'm currently solving this problem, which will better describe what I'm after. The site I run is a real estate marketplace, where my primary focus is to optimize for leads for our customers who advertize on my site (brokers). 


  1. I have a google spreadsheet set up with the Google Analytics plugin, where I retrieve the following data. All data is retrieved in three different time periods; 3 months (Long term), the past two weeks (Short term), the two weeks prior to the past two weeks (Comparison time period).
  • Acquisition data - Adwords click, CTR, and cost data - grouped by keyword, ad group and campaign.
  • Conversion data - Amount of events where a user has contacted a broker on my site (lead), either through email or telephone, where the source is Adwords - grouped by keyword, ad group and campaign.

2. I match the output acquistion data with the conversion data to generate a report that tells me the following. This data is on the keyword, ad group and campaign level, where each metric is described in the three time periods: Long term, short term, comparison.

  • Cost
  • CPC
  • CTR
  • Amount of leads
  • CPL (Cost per lead)
  • UPL (Users per lead)
  • Target bid (Based on account target CPL and long term UPL for the specific keyword, ad group or campaign) 

3. I manually go through these lists, mostly on an ad group level, and identify ad groups in need of a bid modification. This only works if the amount of clicks in the chosen time period isn't too low, lowering the quality of the conversion data. If the ad group level data is too shallow, I sometimes apply campaign level conversion stats to ad groups to calculate appropriate bids.

4. After implementing the new bids I check back in a week or two to see if the short term CPL has improved over the comparison and long term CPL.


Now, this is a rather tedious process, and also really prone to what I like to call spreadsheet degradation. I think I have around 20 sheets to make this possible, and I'm worried that over time the spreadsheet will break as I try to modify it. So far I'm only optimizing on a CPL level, which isn't really telling me much about where my opportunities are to affect my entire account performance. I'm thinking impression share, trends, days to conversion, budget share etc, which I don't even dare try add to my spreadsheet.


Hope this helps clear out my intentions.


Thanks in advance for your help,



Re: Optimizing for specific conversions

Community Manager
# 4
Community Manager
Hi Viktor,

Thank you for following up with the additional information. I'm still a bit confused about the rationale for working through this data in your spreadsheet vs. the Analytics or AdWords interface. For example, if you wanted to view data on all clicks that lead to a particular conversion action on your site, you could set up a filter or segment to view that data. But I might be missing something here in terms of the data you're trying to view. Is there a reason that segmenting or filtering the data in that way is not detailed enough?

Let me know if that makes sense!