Google Ad Reports seem to be a hidden Wonderland in the PPC marketing world. It’s easy to see why there’s so little information on it; Google includes almost all the relevant information that you’d make a report out of in one tab or another of your Ads Dashboard.
So then you’re asking, why would I use Google’s Reports?
First, Google Ad Reports does have information that you can’t see in the dashboard. Just about any information you want to see in regards to your account, Google has tracked it and can present it to you in a neat report.
Secondly, Google Ad Reports allows you to compare stats right next to each other. Want to check your Geolocation data against your Day & Hour data? You got it. Instead of trying to guesstimate one tab’s information against another, Google makes it easy to plug and play all the data you want to without switching screens.
Third, Google allows you to make multiple types of reports, so you don’t have to kill your eyes on spreadsheet formatted reports:
Fourth, you can schedule reports to be sent to yourself or other users on your Google Ads account at a specified recurring date. The information you want to see express delivered to your inbox? Yes, please. Look At These Options It Offers!
Fifth, and perhaps the most important is that Google Reports allows you a more accurate 50-foot-view of the account, helping you see trends and data that just aren’t visible on your dashboard. Your Google Ads dashboard lets you see a plethora of number stats, but when it comes to keyword and search term data, comparing campaigns and ad groups against each other, and other information, dashboards just doesn’t have it.
Lastly, making a report just looks neat. It compiles all your information right in one spot. Imagine showing your client or your boss that you can make a nice report on top of expertly managing a report. You don’t even have to tell him that Google made the report for you.
How to Set Up Google Ad Reports
There are two ways to create your Reports in Google Ads.
The first way is the dimensions part of the Reports tab. Google has created a good amount of predefined reports that make it easy to click and create a report in seconds. They have over 40 reports that you can create in literally less than a second.
I’ll go over the Dimensions Tab reports first in the next section, and then follow up with our favorite personalized reports, which can be created in this way:
- Reports & Reports Again
- Select What Kind of Graph You’d Like (This Can Be Changed At Any Time)
- Drag & Drop Your Information Into Rows And Columns (There’s A Nifty Search Bar If You’d Like To Search For Specific Stats)
The Best Dimensions Tab Reports
Basic > Campaign
For quick info and comparing campaign against campaign, this will be your go-to. Here, Google will display all of your campaigns in a column with your ducks…I mean…data lined up in a row. Here you can sort the columns to see which campaigns have the best metrics and are really performing well.
This is really where you can see that 50-foot view of your account. You can compare side by side data that may surprise you. For instance, you may find that while one campaign will pop up at the top for most conversions, another campaign may have a better conversion rate or a lower cost per acquisition. This information helps you know where your money is being spent the most effectively.
Here are the columns that Google shows you when you quickly create the Campaign Report. Remember you can modify the columns the same way that you modify them in your dashboard:
Time > Day of Week
For an account overview and mile-high look at your profitable days, pop open the Day of Week Report. Sure, you can view information like this in your Dashboard on a campaign by campaign level or in all campaigns, but this report neatly sums up your entire account’s day information. Account data, no campaign data, and no fluff.
Taking a look at this one real quick, you can see that Sunday has the least amount of conversions, the highest cost/conversion, and the lowest conversion rate. Perhaps we could save some money on Sundays?
If you’re not already using extensions on your ads, then go back and create them right now. Extensions are the best thing for your Google Ads because they allow you to give your potential customer what they want – more information. Seriously, they’re great.
And because they’re such a benefit to your ads, you’ll want to keep an eye on how they’re doing and what’s working for you.
From the Extensions drop-down, you can select any of the extensions that you’re currently using and see how well specific ones are boosting your ads, where they’re ranking in the average position across the entire account, and more:
And one of the best parts of the Extensions Report? Simply by clicking on the Filter, you can add all the other extensions to the report to compare your types against each other. But that’s a customizable report, which brings us to the next part.
Our Favorite Customized Reports & How To Use Them
Demographics (Age & Gender)
As a disclaimer, your top result for any metric that you place on the age and gender report will be undetermined and undetermined. That’s simply because everyone has the option of listing their age and gender in their Google account, and the number of people who choose not to list one or the other will consistently be higher than those who are listing their personal information. That doesn’t mean that all hope is lost, though.
For this client, we want to know who is spending the most money on our product:
As mentioned, undetermined and undetermined ranks at the top by a long shot. However, right below, we see that the youngest available age group, 18-24 is spending the most money. The genders are pretty close, which is what we’d like to see.
If your product is designed for one gender or another, this is a great way to see if the marketing is hitting your target audience. It’s also a great way to start building a customer persona if you don’t have one already set up. The more personal your ads can be, the better your chance of getting the sale is.
If you’re a business that travels to meet the client, this report is the one for you. Let’s say you service a specific area in your state, and your location settings are set up to target a range of cities or a radius from your warehouses. If you have a set of trucks that are running out to perform these jobs, you may not know off the top of your head where everyone has gone over the past month.
Thankfully, Google knows where the jobs came from. Crack open a Geo Report, and you can see not only the cities where the jobs came from, but also how much those jobs cost you in marketing dollars. If there’s a city that’s just too far out of your range and you’re paying too much for their conversions, it may be time to set some bid adjustments.
Distance From Location Extensions
On the absolute flip side, if you have a brick and mortar that requires customers to come to you, you’ll want to build a distance from location extensions report. (Of course, this requires you to first have a location extension for your campaigns, which simply lists the address where a customer can find you.)
Once you load the report, you can see how far people are willing to travel to visit you. This is helpful if you’re a new business and start out targeting – say, 50 miles or so with your ads. You can see how far away people are converting from and if the money you’re spending to target them is worth it.
If you’re only getting a few customers at 40+ miles away, and your cost is too high for those, you can start to adjust bids or perhaps shrink your targeting radius.
Click Type By Device
We recommend setting this one up as a bar graph as it get a little confusing. In this graph, you’re answering the question, “What part of my ad is getting the most clicks on different devices?”
The reason why this is so important is because you want to know what your customers are thinking when they’re using their phone, computer, or tablet and viewing your ad. While you can’t pull a Professor X and read their minds, you can see what they’re clicking and draw some conclusions from it.
This report surprised me when I saw that mobile users were selecting the headlines of my ads over phone calls even though they were clearly on their cell phones. This led to more research and insight.
Landing Page Performance
Even brand new baby marketers know that landing pages are vital to conversions. However, because of the way good landing pages are designed, they can be isolating. Sometimes a customer wants to know more about your company and products that you offer before converting.
With a strong sometimes, we can suggest that you can test sending visitors to more general pages on your website versus sending them straight to a high-pressure landing page. This works only if you keep a close eye on your account and monitor a Final URL Report to see if different pages are converting better than others.
Search Term Volume Over Time
Even the best-maintained accounts will have sneaky search terms. No matter how diligently you perform your weekly and monthly maintenance, it’s a good idea to create a search term volume over time report.
If you’re using different match types (as you should), then you know that the data you’re looking at for them can get messy, and you can become quite frustrated when you “just want to see how often someone is searching for a specific keyword without having to add up all the different match types”. Is this relatable?
The search term report removes the fluff of the match types and shows you what’s trending and it even may surprise you with a term or two that you missed.
Sometimes quality score can feel like a black box of mystery, confusion, and increasing cost. One useful report that you can create is Google’s breakdown of your quality score for campaigns and ad groups. Although you can’t get this breakdown for each individual ad, applying the quality score metrics to an ad group can point you in the right direction for what’s affecting your ads.
Here are the breakdown metrics that you can measure:
A Few Things To Always Remember
Is All Your Data Present?
When viewing a table report, Google’s default feature shows it as 50 rows. For large and well-SKAGed accounts, this may not cover the number of campaigns or data that you want to look at.
If your report looks off or you can’t find a specific bit of data you’re looking for, check the bottom and make sure your report is showing all the data you need.
Do You Have The Right Time Set Up?
Similarly to your Ads dashboard, always double check your calendar when viewing your data. There’s nothing more frustrating than analyzing your data and drawing conclusions…only to find out that you’re looking at the wrong time frame.
Don’t Forget About The Compare Feature
One of the best things about Google Ads Reports is their ability to compare a variety of stats against each other, but the compare feature doesn’t stop there. Just like your dashboard, you can compare dates against each other. Depending on how long your Google Ads have been running, you can run a comparison of a month in 2017 to a month in 2018 to compare your year by year progress. Or you can even just run a month by month comparison of whatever data makes you happy.
What reports did you see that you’d like to take a look at? Are there any must-haves that we missed? Let us know in the comments!