Conversion Tracking Without Pity

My biggest pet peeve in PPC management has to be when clients don’t bother (or outright refuse!) to implement conversion tracking on their accounts. Since conversion tracking is the most reliable method to determine whether your users are actually taking action after clicking on your ads instead of just browsing around and costing you money, it boggles my mind when people don’t want to make that small investment of time to cut and paste a javascript snippet onto their web pages.

To put this in perspective, let’s run through a hypothetical situation. Let’s say that you own an electronics store in the town you live in. Whenever someone buys one of your items, you don’t keep track of how much they paid for it. Also, let’s imagine that you don’t keep track of how much you paid for your merchandise from your suppliers, and you also don’t keep records of how much you spent on advertising in the local paper, billboards, radio ads, etc. It would be pretty hard to determine how much money you were making (if you were making money at all!), right?

That’s exactly what’s happening without conversion tracking. Without it, you’ll never know exactly how much you’re spending for a customer to “convert,” whether your conversion event is as simple as an e-commerce sale or as elaborate as a lead submission in a multi-stage purchasing process. Not only can you use this to determine how effective your ads are in generating actual sales, but you can also determine what keywords, ads, or campaigns are eating up your online advertising budget without producing profitable results. This is just the first step in optimizing a PPC account.

Next week, we’ll talk more about a more detailed solution to the problem of conversion tracking: web analytics. For more information on conversion tracking for individual PPC platforms, here are some links:

Google AdWords Conversion Tracking

Yahoo Search Marketing Conversion Tracking

MSN AdCenter Conversion Tracking

About Shawn Livengood

Shawn Livengood is a search engine marketing professional based in Austin, Texas. He has extensive experience managing pay-per-click ad campaigns for clients in various industries, from small home-based businesses to large international companies. You can connect with Shawn on Google+.
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One Response to Conversion Tracking Without Pity

  1. Jeff Douglas says:

    Advancement of Web Analytics :

    Another alternative to web analytics tool available on the net is mvispy.com I have been using the service for past few months and it has worked out well for me. I have been able to do live visitor tracking. MVISPY offers a unique combination of features like real-time visitor data, IP name lookup, conversions tracking (3 ways), email alerts, live or proactive chat, tracking web leads from search engine to conversion, insert leads into sales lead systems, determine what pages don’t work & track click fraud – all while determining what people are looking for, what keywords work best.

    Some of the features offered by MVISPY that are not offered by Analytics are
    - real time tracking on website
    - IP look up with company name address and Jigsaw drill down feature
    - Tracking conversion 3 different ways with email alerts
    - Live pro active chat features that will pop up after a preset number of page views or visitor length on the site and when arrives at preset page
    - SPY shows trails from Search engine to site thru purchase on one display (not done by Google)
    - Auto insert of sales leads in sales Lead system
    - Determine what pages don’t work by real time bounce data (Gogole has)
    - Tracks Click Fraud.