Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Google AdWords - Is a higher spend good for you?

The User Interfaces in Google Analytics and Google AdWords have become much more similar in recent years, although some stark differences are visible. I noticed this a while back and I just couldn't resist blogging about it - it's a rather curious way Google reports on the metrics in AdWords.

In both, when viewing a comparison report (for example last month to this month or last 7 days or this month compared to the same time last year), increases and decreases are shown by a percentage change and then colour-coded - red if the change was negative and green if positive. For example, if your traffic grew 100% in the December over November, then the 100% is green. If, unfortunately, the bounce rate increased from 50% to 55%, then the 5% increase is noted in Red - because this is a negative metric change. You don't want your bounce rate to go up, just like you dont' want your page views to go down.

A client asked me to look at their AdWords campaign, as we often do. What's curious to me is that Google denotes an increase in spend in Green - so this is positive!?! Sure, if you have the right formula, and then you were returning €10 profit for every €1 spent, why wouldn't you drop €50k or even more - but just to have the up in spend regardless of the conversion rate as a green made me smile.

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