Measuring the success of your AdWords campaigns is often done through AdWords Conversion tracking or importing through Google Analytics E-commerce transaction.
There can be times when small & medium sizes businesses are not able to track conversions & see the impact of their campaigns.
This is where Smart Goals start to become very important as they are the next best thing to use that will help you optimise your campaigns. Smart Goals were introduced by Google late last year and they did receive some flak from certain users. The main objection being that small businesses might not understand how to use it, and it may lead to them being turned off from using AdWords if they don’t see the results they’re after.
On the other hand, it does encourage users to define some sort of tracking where they might not have been before.
How Smart Goals Work
Google’s computers are able to take anonymous conversion data from thousands of signed-up websites and will analyse what their machines learn from this – mainly the odds of conversions on your site. It takes into account pages per session, session duration, location, device and browser and determine whether a user will turn into a lead. Sounds complicated? Well, luckily it’s all automated.
Google’s help files say,
“To determine the best visits, Smart Goals establishes a threshold by selecting approximately the top 5% of the traffic to your site coming from AdWords. Once that threshold is set, Smart Goals applies it to all your website visits, including traffic from channels other than AdWords. After enabling Smart Goals in Google Analytics, they can be imported into AdWords.”
How To Set Up Smart Goals
In order to set up Smart Goals you need to firstly go to the Admin section on Google Analytics. Under the View heading there should be a Goal option.
You can see the how the Smart Goals are performing in Google Analytics under Conversions -> Goals -> Smart Goals.
Importing To AdWords
As if you were importing any other goal to AdWords, just got to Tools -> Conversions -> Google Analytics & Import the Goal.
Then you’ll need to start optimising your campaigns based on the results. This is absolutely vital. There’s no point tracking if you’re just going to nod your head and then get on with something else. You need to look at what’s working and bid up on those campaigns. As with most things in life, if it ain’t working, either change it or move on.
Benefits of Smart Goals
Here at Broadplace we meet a lot of small business owners who have been doing PPC themselves and so many have no tracking set up. Why spend on advertising and not analyse what’s working and what’s not?
If you’re not going to have your advertising campaigns handled by professionals, this is the least you should do to manage your money more effectively.
Drawbacks of Smart Goals
Google admits that the system isn’t perfect, there are limitations. Which they explicitly outline, although this might not be immediately obvious to smaller advertisers, so here they are:
- Smart Goals are not configurable or customizable.
- You can have one Smart Goal per view.
- Smart Goals will take up 1 of the 20 available goal slots (like any other goal).
- Smart Goals are currently only available for website views. Smart Goals cannot be used for mobile app views.
- Smart Goals are not available for views that receive more than 1 million hits per day.
- Smart Goals do not support View-Through Conversions (VTCs) or cross-device conversions in AdWords
You know your business better than anyone. Even our account managers, with all their experience and expertise, will always listen to the client. We can advise on our experience within your industry, but you know your business and your clients best.