With a number of Google & LinkedIn Ads accounts under our belt, we get a lot of calls from “advisors” via companies partnered with Google. In our experience, some have been better than others regarding the suggestions they make, while others offer very generic advice without looking too much into your account, settings or performance history.
Yet, from the default dashboard in Google Ads through to some questionable advice stating “it’s all about the clicks” – which usually means a bigger daily budget – are clicks the most important metric?
1. Clicks are the best, right?
While the definition of a “click” might be explanatory, it’s the metrics related to those clicks that matter more and contribute to return. Yes, it means another person can be added to the “potential customer” audience and opens up a brand discovery journey for the visitor. But how relevant that visitor is, is equally important as the click.
Similarly with impressions, this metric measures how many times you’ve appeared on a results page or in a social feed. The idea is that the more impressions you get, the more people are exposed to your brand. To an extent that’s true, but I would ask you two things; Do you remember your last search engine search? And do you remember any of the links you didn’t click on?
With every metric out there, you need to take into account the wider picture, the aims of your business and the Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) that matter most to you.
Don’t you love all these acronyms?
2. So clicks aren't good?
Click Through Rate (CTR) measures the number of Clicks divided by the number of Impressions. The average across Google Ads for November 2022 stands at around 3.17% but can vary significantly depending on industry.
CTR can help identify issues with your ad copy or your SEO descriptions for organic results, or raise questions like:
- Does the Title/Headline clearly explain who I am?
- Does the description entice visitors to discover what my brand is?
- Is something missing/putting people off clicking?
- Or do your keywords lack relevance to the landing page?
i.e. showing in a result that isn’t related and therefore the wrong audience.
Clicks themselves are not always easy to assign value to but they are the first step in some of the juicier metrics and custom goals.
3. So what are the right metrics?
Ok, wait, don’t throw the “clickbait” email complaints quite yet!
Firstly, think about your business purpose for running ads. We might all want more revenue sales and leads but what will the ads do in your eyes to achieve this? More web visitors? More email requests? More brochure downloads? That’s where your conversion data can really play a part in getting the results you want and seeing what’s working and what isn’t across your campaigns.
Secondly, pull out those KPI’s to honestly state what those results are worth. Whether it’s looking at:
- CPM (cost per 1000 impressions)
- CPA (cost per acquisition or action such as a sale)
- ROAS (understanding how much revenue is coming from ads minus the actual spend)
This last one can be one of the most important for small businesses who need to see scalable results from their campaigns. Just keep in mind it can take time to make sure you’re targeting in the most efficient way possible.