PPC Chat Streamcap – PPC and Analytics

This week Matt Umbro (@Matt_Umbro) kicked off the 2012 PPCChat season with the theme of “PPC and Analytics” The following is the transcribed Streamcap from the live chat:

Q1: What filters do you setup in Google Analytics to provide additional insights into your PPC campaign?

  • There is a filter you can setup to view traffic from search partner networks…though you can’t really do much about it. – Matt Umbro (@Matt_Umbro)
  • Use coremetrics more, with segments applied to site interaction and products sold, ga is just pulling the Adwords structure. – Chris Kostecki (@chriskos)
  • I don’t really filter down my ppc campaigns. – Bassovita (@bassovita)
  • Filters for ignoring internal traffic from client’s, employees and similar. – James Svoboda (@Realicity) ++
  • Break out PPC from organic, brand from non-brand but besides that I mostly just manipulate ad-hoc. – Aaron Levy (@bigalittlea) +
  • Filters in GA aren’t absolutely necessary, but will help with the bottom line. – Matt Umbro
  • Alright, seems we use a couple filters…everyone’s homework is to find more and share sometime in the future with the class. – Matt Umbro
  • Not specifically a filter, but I set-up a PPC Only profile that provides an additional level of depth during analysis. James Svoboda
  • Filter out internal IP addresses to rest assured that I’m not looking at test traffic from inside the company. – Shawn Livengood (@slivengood)
  • Keywords that triggered an event on site (Micro Conversions). – Jessica Cameron Ruud (@Camruud)
  • Internal traffic (IP) filters. Also handy: brand vs non-brand filters. Need to learn how to set up though. – Bart Schuijt (@BartSchuijt)

Q2: Do you import Google Analytics goals to AdWords? If so, do you report event tracking/virtual pageview conversions to clients?

  • Yes and Yes. Usually. Sucks having to wait for Analytics goals to start appearing in AdWords sometimes. – James Svoboda
  • Yes to goal imports to track micro conversions (contact, downloads, etc) in addition to ecom sales. – Jessica Cameron Ruud
  • Generally I don’t include virtual pageviews as conversions but they certainly can be. – Matt Umbro
  • Only when absolutely necessary. Usually use Analytics goals to track "well that’s good to know" conversions. – Aaron Levy
  • No – but I’m going to now. – Bassovita
  • I keep the reporting separate, then bring together in excel. They measure differently so I have a prob w reporting GA in Adwords. – Chris Kostecki
  • I treat Analytics data as separate–don’t import to AdWords. (I tend to use Analytics for cross-checking, not embedding.) – Theresa Zook (@I_Marketer)
    • I tend to do this for the most part as well. – Matt Umbro
  • Most of my clients only care about revenue so event tracking goals are nice, but not the bottom line. – Matt Umbro
    • Agree. Clients want to know bottom line. Goals are more "nuts & bolts" – more in-depth than they want. – Theresa Zook
    • True. Clients care about two things: revenue and spend. – MyNextCustomer (@MyNextCustomer)
  • Sort of. But we use LiveBall. 100% agree that it’s important to measure engagement/micro-conversions in PPC. Ion Interactive (@ioninteractive)
  • Multi-Channel Funnels tell me that Events can be important to the Search Marketing Ecosystem. – James Svoboda
  • Virtual pageview/micro-conversions are more for lead gen campaigns IMHO. Though I will say with Communication and Offer extensions we will need to reassess how we think of conversions. – Matt Umbro
    • Marketers should really measure microconversions for both transactions and lead gen. Discover what people are engaging with, and whether that positively or negatively influences conversions. – Ion Interactive
    • Might weigh differently for Value of Initial Conversions & Life Time Customer Value. – James Svoboda
  • I wish AdWords would play with other Analytics programs (or other data sources) to help control delivery. – Chris Kostecki
  • There are certain instances when a clients form does not have a unique page/click to chat, where it is helpful. – Bonnie Schwartz (@bonnieschwartz)
    • I run into the click to chat issue quite often. I think I may have to start tracking that. – Bryce Bertola (@brycebertola)
  • Yes/Sometimes – Virtual PVs and ET’s are more client specific & whether the client see’s those as leads. generally no though. – Cassandra McClure (@imcassy)
  • We often keep analytics vs. adwords goal/conversion tracking separate in order to compare the two & watch for discrepancies. – Cassie Allinger (@_CassieLee_)

Q3: @Bethany_Bey recently wrote “5 Questions You Need To Answer About Your PPC Account Using MCF” about the new multi-channel funnels report in Google Analytics in relation to understanding the role of PPC in the conversion process. How are you making use of the multi channel funnels report?

  • Assisted Conversions FTW! – Michelle Morgan (@michellemsem)
    • Yes, but I find that it can be hard to make clients really understand the relationship. – Theresa Zook
      • Yep, I know exactly what you mean. Hard to convince people that they’re valuable. – Michelle Morgan
        • We know, because we live in the data, but correlations that jump off the screen for us look tenuous to the noob. – Theresa Zook
  • How both search queries and keywords impact the buying funnel – outside of just last click. – Jessica Cameron Ruud
  • It can be incredibly insightful to understand the % of Lift received by each source to the other channels. – James Svoboda
  • I think ‘not using them enough’ probably covers it. – Dennis Petretti (@Denetti) +
  • I’m finding major inconsistencies between MCF reports and Search Funnels report in AdWords, anyone else? And when I talk about the inconsistencies I’m only looking at all paid conversion funnels. – Matt Umbro
  • How organic and paid both contribute to a sale in a longer buying cycle. – Jessica Cameron Ruud
  • Looked at them, decided I didn’t have space in my brain at the moment, ran away. *sad* Must go learn. – Theresa Zook
  • MCF report comes back to micro conversions/virtual pageviews; client only wants to see so much info and the bottom line up to us to explain importance of these additional reports. We also have to weigh how many clients we have and time given to each…MCF reports are awesome, but are they absolutely necessary? And when I say absolutely necessary I mean for PPC client management. In ideal world would love to have time to use for all clients. – Matt Umbro
    • There’s only 1 of me. I can manage the account or teach the client–they’re not paying for enough of my time for both. – Theresa Zook
      • Totally agree, we have to set priorities and manage expectations. – Matt Umbro
        • Yes! For smaller accts using a simple approach? Waste of time. It’s "long cycle" clients where increments matter. – Theresa Zook
      • It’s true. I think a little education can go a long way in helping them understand what you are doing too. – Luke Alley (@LukeAlley)
    • Having some trouble bumping into other channels, which are managed by others, trying to educate & work w them (& not step on toes). – Chris Kostecki
  • They give me insights in whether or not to pause kws, ad groups and campaigns in AdWords. Further: they [MCF] help to set up the attribution model for clients. – Bart Schuijt

Q4: What insights do you glean from the paid keyword report in Google Analytics and what actions do these insights lead to?

  • Determine quality of traffic from keywords and search queries. Bounce Rates, Goal Completions, etc. – Jessica Cameron Ruud
  • Along with conversion metrics in AdWords/adCenter helps me determine whether I should pause keywords. – Matt Umbro
  • Bounce rate helps determine which keywords need improved landing pages, better content or navigation. – Luke Alley
  • Depth of traffic, and what keywords drop what users into what purchase phase. Also helps evaluate 3rd tier networks. – Aaron Levy
  • Matched Search Queries actually matched up with keyword that triggered them. – James Svoboda
  • GA offers much better e-commerce paid keyword data than AdWords, even after custom conversion event setup. – Shawn Livengood
    • Do you set dynamic revenue value through your AdWords conversion code? – Matt Umbro
      • I want my product-level data! – Aaron Levy
      • Yup. Can’t get GA to match the number exactly, even though the data source is the same though *shakes fist at Google* – Shawn Livengood
        • I hear that, I think problem sometimes comes down to the conversion being double counted in AdWords. – Matt Umbro
  • It shows me which PPC keywords have the best conversions, which means they will be good keywords to target with SEO. ‘best conversion rate’ to be clear. – Dennis Petretti
  • Probably my favorite Analytics report, for all the reasons others are mentioning. – Theresa Zook
  • Exactly which goals each keyword triggered. – James Svoboda
  • Bounce rates! Helps to measure success on kw lvl. Then you can pause kw or regroup. – Bart Schuijt
  • My overall Analytics issue is that managing a lot of small PPC accounts doesn’t leave much time for Analytics analysis. – Luke Alley
    • Nor does the traffic to the site necessarily warrant in-depth analysis. – Matt Umbro
      • Right. Great to hit on some of the Analytics data. Can be super helpful. – Luke Alley
        • Not analytics, but find new keywords through search terms originating from product feed campaign. – Matt Umbro
    • Harvest converting organic keywords. Freeeee longtail data! – Aaron Levy
    • Important to focus on key metrics then. – MyNextCustomer
  • Search query reporting provides new ideas for campaigns and landing pages. Huge fan. Bounce rates can also tell you if there is mismatch between the keyword and landing page. Bounce rates are a good indication of quality of traffic and/or quality of landing page. – Ion Interactive
    • One issue to be aware of with LP Bounce Rate is % of visitors who called and did not click forward. Some sites get huge call %. – James Svoboda +
    • Agreed on bounce rate-also imp. to keep eye on lps-ie: if option is to conv or bounce, br likely high. – Crystal Anderson

Q5: Aside from PPC post click data, how do Analytics help you to optimize your PPC campaigns?

  • I’ve seen verrry limited success with feeds- lots of them are auto-suggest based so I get the same thing. – Aaron Levy
    • Really? I’ve seen just the opposite. Some of my best performing campaigns within accounts are feeds. – Matt Umbro
      • May just be that the product feeds I was using in the past weren’t very well set up. – Aaron Levy
  • Seeing what the traffic actually does when it reaches the site? Priceless when troubleshooting. – Theresa Zook
  • Look at referring sites and see if any are in Display Network for a managed placement campaign. – Matt Umbro
  • IMO better trend / month over month comparison data in GA for Ecom sites. – Jessica Cameron Ruud
  • To monitor behaviour at landing pages (e.g. bounce rates, conv. rates). – Bart Shuijt
  • Allows us to focus our efforts on the most profitable AdGroups. – MyNextCustomer
  • Geographic data from GA is extremely helpful in deciding where to set up locally-targeted PPC campaigns. – Shawn Livengood
  • I have used GA to show to a client the relative success I new they were spending more on media. We were drove more conv. – Bonnie Schwartz
  • Analyze organic kws/placements, compare perf. for trends, analyze opps-mobile, remarketing etc. – Crystal Anderson (@CrystalA)
  • Also if I see PPC traffic/metrics fall, I like to see if it is across all mediums or just PPC so I know if I need to worry. – Bonnie Schwartz
  • I like being able to compare any time-frame to another time-frame quickly right on the screen. Metrics and graph. – Mark Kennedy (@markkennedysem)
  • Helps me know if it is just ppc or problems across the board. – Derek Ostler (@DerekOstler)
  • Expanding on that, one of the best metrics for checking if you matched the searchers intent or not is the bounce rate. – Dennis Petretti

Q6: How much time do you spend reviewing analytics for your clients? If not much time what is the obstacle(s)?

  • In our analytic programs throughout the week, looking at different traffic & product impacts, have also been hooked on GA real time. – Chris Kostecki
  • A lot of my clients like to look at their Google analytics, so we will review it together. It helps them see how it all works. – Mark Kennedy
  • Much less than I should–time. Also, have clients who wouldn’t "fix" website issues even if it would make them millionaires. So, what’s the point in identifying on-site weaknesses? Why do people view changing their website as a major problem? – Theresa Zook
  • I get all the time I need to review analytics and make informed decisions. Working in-house is pretty sweet. – Shawn Livengood
  • Minimum for smaller campaigns is monthly analysis & reporting where tracking & analyzing Specific Performance Data Points. – James Svoboda
  • Bigger the client the more time i spend on analytics and other for them. I give each client a certain time lot for all. – Derek Ostler
  • Depends on the acct, but in comparison to how much time is spent in interfaces, I’d say on avg. its an 80(inter)/20(ga) split. – Crystal Anderson

Q7: What are your analytics Must Haves/Dos for any size PPC account?

  • Focus on conversions, not clicks. – Ion Interactive
  • Incorporate your analytics with spend data for CPA – a must for the lead gen campaigns I run. – Justin Freid (@Justin_Freid)
  • Stable Goal & Conversion tracking. Must. Have. – James Svoboda +++
  • KW positioning, kw & page bounce rates, long-tail, traffic sources, & love in-page view. – Theresa Zook
  • Obviously goal tracking, filtering out in-house traffic. Revenue tracking if you’re e-commerce or have a fixed conv value. – Shawn Livengood
  • Use GA to track convs. you can’t w/interface codes. Ensure other media is tagged!!! – Crystal Anderson
  • Revenue & cost data. Landing page engagement / BR. Monthy / yearly trending data. – Jessica Cameron Ruud


More PPCChats

Don’t forget to stay tuned for the next #PPCchat on Tuesday at 12 noon Eastern, 9 am Pacific and 5pm in the UK. Same Chat time, same Chat channel.


Check out the PPCChat Twitter list to see and connect with all current and prior participants.

About the Streamcaperer

This is a guest post by Paul Kragthorpe, Search Manager at WebRanking in Minneapolis, Minnesota, #PPCChat Streamcap transcriber, rare SEO Blogger, Tweeting from @PaulKragthorpe, and Google+’ing from PaulKragthorpe.

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2 Responses to PPC Chat Streamcap – PPC and Analytics

  1. Hi
    Would you like to guest post on my new search marketing blog searchmarketingpost.com?

    I am an organic SEO and blog about SEO but I am in need of someone with good ppcsem knowlege.

    If interested please email me thanks

  2. R Morgan says:

    Great question and answers! must remember to print out as there is some great questions to some rather hard PPC questions I have had clients ask sometimes….

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