Getting your website ready for a Google Ads campaign

“You can't improve what you can't measure”

Those words were uttered by the famous Peter Drucker during the direct marketing days and well before digital marketing became omnipresent. However, his quote is perhaps now even more relevant (anyone try to measure the success of a leaflet drop campaign?).

Google Ads can be an invaluable Pay Per Click (PPC) tool to help your business generate more leads and sales and one of the reason for its ubiquitous presence is just how well it can work when you know what you’re doing.

However, the very reason that has made it so popular is also the same reason it has made it an incredibly competitive digital marketing channel and a very easy way to lose money if you can’t accurately track how well your PPC campaign is paying off.

 

Enter conversion tracking.

 

google ads overarching goals sub goals KPIs performance targets diagramConversion tracking is the section of Google Ads which allows you to create goals and events which basically tracks every possible conversion action on your website.

Ultimately you want to track not just the obvious conversion action such as a sale but also secondary call-to-actions such as enquiries, downloading a promo code, newsletter signups and others applicable to your business as many times, secondary/sub goals could, in fact, turn into your primary one(s).

  The benefits of having conversion tracking in place should be self-explanatory but here are a few to motivate you:

 

Get qualitative data

 

Conversion tracking allows you to deep-dive into your campaign data and get various insights which you could use for other marketing efforts. For example, once you know which keywords are driving leads and sales and which ones simply result in tire-kickers, you can use this valuable piece of information when formulating your SEO strategy.

As importantly, you can begin fine-tuning your campaign, lowering your bids or pausing nonperforming keywords altogether focusing as much as possible on the keywords likely to positively impact your bottom line.

Another example is getting to understand your audience and buying habits better. For example, by looking at your conversions on a device-level, you can get insights such as what device your customers use to buy from and then lowering your bids on devices that are least profitable.

 

google ads best and worst table

 

Sell more! Ultimately, the purpose of a Google Ads campaign for most small businesses is going to be sales (not brand awareness).

If you find that your Google Ads is working relatively well (think good Quality Scores, high click-through rates, low Cost Per Clicks) but it isn’t resulting in the expected ROI, there’s a good chance that your website or landing pages are the bottleneck.

By making improvements to the pages to which you’re directing your traffic, not only can you ultimately sell more but it would also have a positive long-term impact on all other digital marketing channels where you’re using the same landing pages.

 

Improve your marketing ROI

 

Whilst Google Ads is an incredibly effective source of lead-generation, your return from your ad spend will vary greatly depending on myriad factors such as how competitive your industry is, the quality and buyer-intent of your chosen keywords, how well your campaign is set up and much more.

By looking at your lead and sales acquisition costs on a channel basis, you can decide where your marketing budget is best spent and tweak your allocation accordingly.

Not only will it enable you to find out exactly how much you’re spending to acquire each customer through your Google Ads campaign but also help you make strategic decisions when deploying multiple marketing channels such as which one is more cost-effective and therefore to focus on more.

Hopefully, now that you’re convinced about the importance of conversion tracking here’s how to get started…..

 

Setting up Conversion Tracking

 

Ultimately, the Conversions view on your Google Ads should look like this, with multiple goals and events having been configured.

 

google ads conversion actions table

 

You’ll find an informative guide on how to set it up on Google Ads’s official resource but here’s an overview:

  1. Head over to the Conversions section of your Google Ads

 

google ads settings options

 

  1. You’ll be presented with a range of options for setting up conversions. Unless you’re selling a mobile app, you will want to select the other ones.

If you already have goals set up in Google Analytics then click on the Import option and you will be able to import your GA goals into Google Ads without having to set them up again

For new installs, select the Website option and you will be able to all configure conversion actions that apply.

 

google ads track conversions icons

 

The Phone Calls tracking is an incredibly important and useful feature which allows you to track conversions that originated via the phone. Whilst this may be less important for eCommerce websites, it is a good idea to have all of these in place.

Head over to this guide on the official Google Ads website for more on how to set up conversion tracking via phone calls

Here’s a simple guide on what to enter as values when defining each conversion:

 

google ads enter values conversions

 

If you’re using an eCommerce website powered by Shopify, WordPress WooCommerce or another popular shopping cart plugin, it is fairly easy to setup conversion tracking for your primary call-to-actions via Google Analytics.

 

Head over to the eCommerce section on the admin section of your GA profile and enable eCommerce tracking.

 

google ads enable ecommerce status setup

 

In most cases, you won’t need to do much else and once you import these goals into your Google Ads campaign, you can even see exactly which products you sold, their total value, how much spent to generate that sale and a host of other KPIs.

 

google ads campaign

 

TIP: Whilst you’re in GA, it’s a good idea to switch on eCommerce search tracking so you can also see what products your users are searching for.

For advanced marketers and eCommerce businesses, there are some other KPIs you may wish to track to get a more insightful view into your campaign performance and ROI:

 

  1. Conversion by traffic source: Where are your converting customers coming from? Once you combine this with the cost per acquisition of each sale, you can use this data to determine where you should be investing in driving traffic
  2. Conversion of new vs. returning visitors: Segment conversions of new visitors vs. returning visitors. Conversions for returning visitors are traditionally higher.
  3. Secondary conversion to first: By looking at conversions by each call-to-actions, you can determine how valuable secondary conversion actions are (e.g. what % of newsletter signups convert into a sale ultimately)
  4. Profit: What remains after you subtract the cost of running the store and all marketing expenses (don’t forget to take into account what you pay your eCommerce marketing agency)?

 

And, that sums up how to set up conversion tracking.

As always, if you need help at any stage or want to know how to setup Google Adss or conversion tracking for your own site, feel free to get in touch with Diffusion Digital and we’ll be happy to help.

 

 

How to effectively use the data collected by Google Analytics

Google Analytics has the ability to give users valuable insights into the performance of their digital space. However, without much experience in data analytics, brand managers often struggle to understand the statistics and cannot use this information to their advantage. The knowledge of certain basic tools can go a long way in helping you understand how customers interact with your website. Instead of focusing on the tools, it is helpful to focus on what you’re trying to get out of the data. If it is one of the below, Google Analytics has the answers you need.

1. Targeted Advertising

AdWords and Internet advertising can seem like a costly proposition if you’re not sure of whom to target. The Audience tool gives you information about your users. In particular, the Demographics, Interests and Geo sections can tell you where your users are from and what matters to them. On the basis of this data, you can determine your likeliest customers, and specify that your ads reach out only to them. This can significantly reduce your cost-per-click.

Google analytics Screenshot

If you use AdWords, you can also measure the performance of your ads using the Acquisition tool and further minimize your costs by getting rid of ineffective campaigns.

2. Identify Problem Areas on Your Website

Google Analytics reports a metric called “bounce rate”. Bounce rate is a session in which only one page was viewed (the landing page) and the visitor exited your site without exploring any other page. A high bounce rate for certain pages can alert you about the possible issues with it. Perhaps the visitor did not find the information they expected on the page, or the page layout was confusing and the content too overwhelming. This metric can alert you about the pages that need improvements. You will find this metric throughout your website data to measure different tools.

Google analytics Screenshot

Another helpful measure is Site Speed. It gives information about how much time a page on your site takes to load. A high Page Load Time can be infuriating for visitors and could be the reason behind a high bounce rate or non-completion of goals. Perhaps the content size on this page can be reduced to allow a smoother experience for your users.

Google analytics Screenshot

3. What to Highlight on Your Website

Often brands struggle to understand what is most important for their users and should be emphasized on the website. Just how GA can help you pinpoint problematic areas, it can also tell you which pages and products are most viewed.

The eCommerce tab gives data about your product offering, including which are the most purchased. These products should be featured on your homepage and should be placed at the top of your listings page.

Google analytics Screenshot

The “site-search” tab gives you data about what is most searched on your site. If the searched items are products, feature them on your homepage. If they are general landing pages, increase activity on these pages to enhance performance on these pages. A high number of “Visits With Site Search” can also indicate a high level of engagement and familiarity of visitors with your brand.

Google analytics Screenshot

4. Influence How Visitors Reach Your Website

GA gives you data about the channels, devices, browsers and OS from which your site has been accessed. You can use this data to understand what’s working for your website and focus on improving this. For example, if social channels are generating traffic for your website, you can increase activity on your account and/or engage influencers in blogging about your website. Most brands aim to increase organic traffic, that is, the traffic that comes in from search engines. If this is low for your brand, it is crucial that you rethink the content on your site and incorporate relevant keywords.

Google analytics screen shot

If you’re wondering whether you need a mobile site, the devices used data can help you make the decision. If mobiles and tablets are used often by your users to access the website, a mobile version of your website can enhance their experience on your site.

Summary

Google Analytics can give you cost-effective insights into your brand’s online performance and can alert you to possible issues with it. The full potential of Google Analytics will be realised once you use the data to optimise the experience of each and every individual that visits your website, but for now, this can be a great starting point.

 

Diffusion Digital offers bespoke SEO services and can help you comprehend the data that you collect through google analytics and other sites. Read more about what we offer by following this link.

Top 5 Business Benefits of using Google Analytics

Google Analytics (GA) is something that most of people have heard of, some have integrated with their website, but few know exactly what it does and just how it can transform your business from a digital perspective.

GA is a powerful tool that provides valuable data about your website and easily integrates with Shopify and WordPress. Here are some of those main benefits:

Traffic

Visitors to your website will come from various places – a search engine, an advert, an email link etc. Knowing what the main sources of traffic are gives you insight to the strength of your SEO, your ad campaigns and other incoming links. If, for example, you are running an ad campaign, you can track how much traffic has been generated through these ads, as well as other specifics such as keyword usage and day part peaks, all of which can be analysed for optimisation purposes.

Keywords

One of the most important reports in GA is the keywords report. Keywords are vital to figuring out how your search traffic is finding your site. It is possible to see what words / terms, used in searches, have resulted in the most traffic. This info can be used to modify the content on the site for SEO purposes and can inform you as to which key words you should be targeting for ad campaigns.

Visitor Profiles

Knowing the profiles and behaviours of visitors to your website is extremely useful. With GA you can find out geographically where the traffic is coming from, age and gender information, and visitor behaviours such as what devices they are using (desktop, mobile, tablet etc.) and whether they are new or returning visitors. This data can help you adapt your web site and shape your marketing activity to best meet the needs of your visitors.

Page Popularity & Bounce Rate

You can track average time spent on pages and bounce rates, giving you insight to which parts of the site are most popular and where there are bottlenecks. A high bounce rate (when a user leaves your website having visited just one page) indicates that the visitors are not finding the information they want or are struggling to navigate through the site. Understanding as to where this is happening allows you to modify the content and structure the site to help reduce these rates and therefore increase engagement.

No Cost

GA is completely free of charge and offers just as many, if not even more, functionalities than most of the other paying tools on the market.

Summary

GA is a great tool for increasing the effectiveness of your online presence, no matter what the size or nature of your business is. Outlined in this article are just some of the main things that you can do with GA. There are many other functions on offer in GA, including social and email reporting, sub domain management and revenue tracking, making it a seriously powerful marketing tool that should not be overlooked.

We have a dedicated team at Diffusion to support our clients with the set up and on-going management of GA, as part of our website build offering. Please do get in touch if you would like to find out more.

Alternatively read more about Diffusion Digital’s Search Engine Optimisation strategy or, learn more about working with a digital marketing agency or ppc agency.