How to Optimise Google Ads without Conversion Data

How to evaluate and improve your campaigns when you don't have good (or any) conversion tracking to use...


How do you get more out of your Google Ads campaigns when you don't have good conversion data to work with? The answer to this and more coming up….


The best way to optimise a campaign is to evaluate how different parts of the campaign are performing based on conversions, so you can see which keywords, which ads, which settings are leading to users coming to your site and taking the actions you want them to take, which you are tracking as conversions.

In fact making sure you have conversion tracking set up correctly is one of the first recommendations that I make in my Google Ads Optimization checklist which by the way you can download through the link in the description.

But sometimes the conversion data you have just isn't enough.

Maybe, for example, there is one high value conversion action on your site, and no obvious intermediate steps that you can track as micro conversions. Then the data that you do get just maybe doesn't come in fast enough to spread decent insights across all the different keywords and different parts of the campaign.

Or maybe you don't have conversion tracking set up at all... This shouldn't happen, but it does...

In those cases you will have to use some looser indications of traffic quality to evaluate the campaign and see which parts of it are working and which parts are not. Now we're going to look at two simple sources of that type of data.

First you can use search term reports in a slightly different way. Typically you would go through these reports looking for search term phrases that have high spend and low conversions or no conversions and eliminate them with negative keywords, or conversely you might find some successful variations that you're not explicitly targeting and add them as keywords.

Without conversion data you can look through these search term reports against different individual keywords and make your own judgment about how qualified the search phrases that appear are. Are these the type of searches that are likely to lead to interested users and converting users?

This isn't based on data, but you can make some fairly reliable judgments that give you a clear indication of traffic quality.

The other way is based on data, and it's to use the engagement metrics from Google Analytics.

Those are: bounce rate, average pageviews per session and average session duration. All three of these can be imported and viewed in your Google Ads account and cross referred to keywords and other variables.

Having added those columns, you can then sort by bounce rate or session duration and you have a new layer of information about traffic quality that you can then use to help evaluate what's working and choose where to put your money to get the best results.

That's it for another video. If you'd like more PPC tips like this then go ahead and subscribe. If you'd like to join the most helpful PPC community around then check out our Facebook group: link in the description... but for now this is Phil Taylor - PPC Strategist - until next time!