The search engines provide advertisers with a variety of reports to help them increase the profitability of their PPC accounts. Recently, Google™ launched their new AdWords Search Funnels reporting to help advertisers better understand their customers’ search behavior. The Search Funnels reports provide insights about which keywords, ad groups, and campaigns are not only directly providing conversions, but are also contributing to additional conversions throughout the search process.
The new Search Funnels reporting feature is being rolled out gradually to Google AdWords accounts. When the feature is available in your account, you can access it in the “Conversions” section of the “Reporting” tab that’s displayed at the top of your AdWords account. Within the Conversions section, a link to the Search Funnels reporting interface will be displayed on the left-hand side (as in the image below).
The Search Funnels interface provides a variety of reports that segment the data based on a variety of metrics. In the following list, we’ve included details about four of our favorite reports:
- Assisted Conversions. The Assisted Conversions report can be segmented by campaign, ad group, or keyword. We recommend segmenting the data by keyword and sorting by “Assisted Conversions / Last Click Conversions.” When sorted in this format, the keywords at the top of the list will be the ones that “assist” in conversions more than they “convert.” These keywords may often look like they’re not converting in an AdWords account, but in actuality, they’re extremely crucial in the conversion process because they assist other keywords throughout the buying cycle.
- Top Paths. When you view the Top Paths report, we recommend adjusting the “Dimension” to “Keyword Path (Clicks)” because this will show the various keyword paths that ultimately led users to convert. The data in this report can help advertisers identify where their keywords fall within the buying cycle so they can adjust their bids and ad messages to more effectively target users throughout the shopping process.
- Time Lag. The Time Lag report shows the average lag period between the time a visitor first clicks on an ad and the time he or she actually converts. This report can be extremely beneficial because it helps advertisers determine the length of the buying cycle associated with their products or services. Because AdWords records conversions on the day the user clicked on their ads (not necessarily converted), conversions will often be recorded later for previous periods of time. With the help of the Time Lag report, advertisers can better gauge the effectiveness of their campaigns over specific periods of time.
- Path Length. The Path Length report provides advertisers with insights about how many times a user generally clicks on their ads before converting. Besides defining the customer buying cycle, this report can help advertisers more accurately determine the profitability of their account because one conversion may require several clicks.
If you’re currently running PPC advertising on Google, check to see if the Search Funnels feature is available in your account. If it is, take some time to review the reports to gain a better understanding of your customers’ shopping patterns. When you do, you’ll be able to create more effective strategies that target your customers and garner the most out of your PPC budget.
For more details, watch Google’s overview video about AdWords Search Funnels.
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