Tracking Conversions | Search Scientists

Day 4 of AdWords Help: Tracking Conversions

End Guesswork Marketing

How do huge e-commerce stores like Zappos manage their AdWords accounts? Do they spend with reckless abandon while the advertising bills stack up? How much guesswork do they have to in order to determine if bidding on “green running shoes for men” is profitable?

In the early days of online marketing, they couldn’t be sure.

Thankfully those days of guesswork are a thing of the past. We can track every conversion event from a simple email opt-in to calculating shopping cart value. Even my clients that run television commercials are using Google Analytics to measure the impact of their advertising. Discount code tracking, traffic source specific landing pages, and redirect URLs are all a few ways businesses have improved their marketing campaign tracking over the years.

Even with all these tools available, it can be easy to forget the keystone of any AdWords Campaign. If you’re not tracking conversions, you’re running ads similar to the pre-digital days of “guesswork-marketing.”

Why Conversion Tracking is a Must

The wealth of information available to any AdWords advertiser can be daunting. Clicks by hour of the day. Clicks by geographic region. Clicks across thousands of keywords across hundreds of products. The data can be overwhelming—unless you can access the most important metric of them all: conversions.

If you want to build the most profitable campaign for your business, then you have to start asking yourself these kinds of questions:

What are the most profitable and unprofitable times of day? What states should you avoid? What kind of marketing message gets leads the cheapest? What landing page performs best? What are your most profitable keywords? Which keywords should be turned off?

You can only answer all of these questions if you have set up proper conversion tracking.

Why It’s Even More Important for E-commerce Stores

The AdWords Conversion Code is set to measure how many times a conversion occurred. Are all conversions equal for your business? Normally with an e-commerce store, there may be hundreds of products with price points from a few dollars to a few thousand. You can’t optimize and improve your account unless you know which keywords bring in not just the most conversions, but the most revenue.

For e-commerce stores, you’ll want to activate transaction-specific values. This way, when the conversion tracking gets fired, you’ll have your revenue sent along with it.

This makes it much easier to track Return on Ad Spend, which is the most important metric in your account.

Setting Up Conversion Tracking for E-commerce Stores

Normally this process takes a few hours for a developer to set up. The developer needs to modify the standard conversion code to grab the revenue figures from your shopping cart.

To give you an idea of what goes into modifying a conversion code for e-commerce stores, I’ve attached a few educational materials to popular e-commerce platforms.

Always Track Conversions

Tracking conversions is so vital to the success of any paid traffic campaign, that you should not start any campaign without first ensuring you’re measuring conversions accurately. For e-commerce stores, this is doubly true, and you’ll also want to track shopping cart values as well.

Without this kind of tracking, you will be missing out on all the tools and techniques available to improve your marketing return on investment.

The good news is conversion tracking is a one-time only setup. After you install conversion tracking, you are finished until you change your checkout process.

Congratulations, you’ve made it through Day 4 of our AdWords Help series. You’re one step closer to building the profitable paid traffic campaign your company deserves.

This post is part of a series: ‘100 Days of AdWords Help’.

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Michael Erickson

Emailing my clients and telling them I helped increase their return on ad spend by 300% never gets old. I love rising above the technical jargon and providing your business with online marketing momentum to reach new heights. Enthusiast for all things science, surfing, and Search Scientists.

5 Replies to “Day 4 of AdWords Help: Tracking Conversions”

  1. I’ve recently enabled the Valuetrack parameter template in AdWords and it is golden. Currently pushing lead data into Tend. Are you guys pushing it to a CRM? Salesforce too expensive, so testing more affordable options.

      1. Thanks a lot for the valuable feedback sharing. I’ve reached out to them and can’t wait to give AgileCRM a test-run.

        BTW: loving the blog series and reading one a day for the next couple of weeks.

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