Checking Your Spends Going To The Right Place In Google Ads

Team member - Daniel Hales By Daniel Hales |
Published 10/05/2021

Whether you’re just checking up on an account you have someone else managing or are an experienced Google Ads user looking for areas in which your account can be improved, here are some stats which are worth pulling out of Google Ads to check that spend is going to the right places and to give you an overall idea of your accounts health.

If you’re new to Google Ads it can be especially confusing when checking up on your account with the Recommendation Score often being looked at or just overall performance (How do you benchmark your performance? Is it a case of it being better than it was? Affordable? What if you could get more out of the account). In this article we look at two areas we believe are worth checking out and will be a good indication for a well managed and optimised account.

Match Type Analysis

One of the first things worth looking at is the performance of different match types, with the emphasis on Exact match. There are two main metrics we want to look at for this quick overview; Cost and Conversions. We want to get these metrics for all keywords and for Exact match only keywords and from there we can work out the percentage of cost and conversions coming from Exact match.

Both of these metrics should be in the default columns so should be easy to find and it might be easiest to get the total cost and conversions from the campaign view. To get the data for just Exact match keywords you’ll need to go to the Search Keywords report where a “Match Type” filter can be set to show just Exact match keywords. The totals can then be seen in the second column. From there you can work out the percentage of cost and conversions using the following formulas:

(Exact Match Cost / Total Cost) * 100 = Exact Match Cost Percentage

(Exact Match Conversions / Total Conversions) * 100 = Exact Match Conversions Percentage

So what do these mean and what should you be aiming for? The first thing you need to understand is what the different match types are, we’ve written an article about match types here. So what you want to achieve is as much of your spend on Exact as possible, this is due to the fact that if you know that an Exact match keyword is performing there’s less variables and it’s more likely to carry on performing. Unfortunately there isn’t a good level to use as a benchmark and this should be measured over time and you should expect this to increase if the account is being well managed. This is due to the fact that negative keywords should be added to get rid of irrelevant keywords in other match types (reducing the cost of those) and keywords that are triggered by other match types and perform should be added to the account as an Exact match.

The conversion percentage is easier to see whether the account is optimised or not and should initially be compared to the cost percentage. The conversion percentage should always be above the cost percentage as you should expect Exact match keywords to perform better than other match types. If it’s lower it might be that converting keywords aren’t being added to the account as Exact match or it might be the case that the account or campaign is new and needs more time for data to be collected in order to optimise the account further.

Converting Keywords Analysis

The next thing to consider is the percentage of converting keywords compared to total keywords. There are two metrics to look at this, the number of keywords and the cost.

Like with the match type comparisons we can get the totals and filtered values to work out the percentages. The total cost can be taken from the campaigns view again and the others can be taken from the Search Keywords report. To get the total number of keywords you can scroll to the bottom of the report where it will tell you the number. Make sure there’s no filters other than to only show eligible keywords. You should then add a filter of “Conversions > 0” and look at this number again as well as getting the cost for the filtered views. The percentages can then be worked out using the following formulas:

(Converting Keywords / Total Keywords) * 100 = Percentage of Converting Keywords

(Converting Keywords Cost / Total Cost) * 100 = Percentage of Converting Keywords Cost

The first of these metrics is the least important of the two, however a low percentage can indicate a hard to manage account with lots of low volume keywords being added. This can also indicate that management time isn’t being used as effectively as possible.

The second is possibly the most important indicator discussed in this article. This shows the overall effectiveness of the different keywords being bid on. At a minimum you should be aiming for 60% for this, however getting above 75% would be more ideal. This means that your budget is being spent in the right areas. It’s unlikely to get this up to 100% and you should consider that a percentage of the spend should be put towards experimenting in order to find opportunities for your account.

These areas are a quick way you can see an overview of how effective the management of your account is. If you’re struggling with your Google Ads and would like a second opinion you can get in touch with us to discuss your account and we’d be more than happy to look over things for you and give an initial audit.

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