Report Types

A report is a collection and rearrangement of data (a tool or a document) in order to produce and present readable information out of raw data about campaign performances. Google AdWords offers two main categories of reports, the standard and the advanced one. Each category contains different reports.

Standard AdWords Reports

There are a lot of different types of reports. The standard and most important reports in SEA are the following ones:

Gives the broader type of information, giving an overview of the metrics per single campaign.
Gives a more detailed overview compared to the campaign report, partitioning the data in smaller subsets compared to campaigns. It can be created for the entire account (including all given ad groups) or for each single campaign (including only the ad groups of that specific campaign).
Gives an overview on the performances of ads. It can be helpful to determine whether differences in performances can be due to differences in the messages delivered in the ads themselves. It can be created for the entire account, for a specific campaign or for a specific ad group.
This is the most detailed report. It gives information about the performances of each single keyword, and can be created for the entire account, for a single campaign or for a single ad group.
These reports should be used in this order to identify elements that can be improved. This means a general report like the campaign report is the one to start with the search, followed by the other ones which go deeper and deeper into detail.

Report Metrics

The main metrics visible in AdWords reports are numbers emerging from the market of paid search. They reflect the cost-side of SEA, and SEA consultants can directly influence them. In the below table you see a brief explanation of the main metrics useful when working with AdWords reports. For more information on this, please recap the Basics of SEA.


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Segments

Segments give you the possibility to analyze performances in various ways.  They add a dimension to the reports visible in AdWords, and help to dig deeper into analyzing data from each type of report described above. The main types of segments that is possible to insert in a report are:

  • Time: day, week, month etc.
  • Keyword/placement
  • Network: Google Search, search partners, and Display network
  • Device: computer or mobile device

All these options can be found in the AdWords online interface under “Segment”.

How to Download AdWords Reports

To download a report  from inside the AdWords interface you have to follow the following steps: First, define the time frame of the report. Next, choose the level, which will define the report type. Continue, by pressing the “Download Report” button. Moreover, there are segments electable to the report in order to define additional values out of the existing data.

After pressing the “Download report” button, a new window pops up, where the report can be customized. Change the name, choose the desired file-type, and add, if required a new segment to the report as a column. Moreover, a time schedule for this report can be assigned to send it automatically to a specified group of users at a frequently selected time period.

Advanced AdWords Report’s

Ad Extensions allow you to include additional information with your ad, without being charged an extra fee. Usually, ads with Ad Extensions tend to appear in the top positions of the search results, normally obtaining a higher CTR.

The types of Ad Extensions available are:

  • Location Extensions: shows your business address
  • Call Extensions: gives the possibility to call your business (for mobiles)
  • Sitelinks: links to other pager of your website
  • Social Annotations: the number for Google’s +1 you page has
  • Seller Ratings: show the external rating given to your business
  • App Extensions: links to your mobile app

Even if most extensions are created at the campaign level, certain types have been upgraded, and can be created even at the ad group level. To download reports, first select the depth level of the report itself (entire account, single campaign or, if possible for that specific extension, ad group level), then press the ad extension tab and select the type of extension you need to analyze from the “view” drop down menu.

By checking how many clicks and impressions your ad extension has received, its related costs, and other statistics, you can see how these extensions are performing. This data can help you decide which kind of ad extension works best for your ad, and when it’s time to add or remove an existing ad extension.

Keep in mind that when you make changes to any of your extensions, this will delete the extension and reset its statistics to zero.

The time report can be found in the dimension tab, under the ”View” drop down menu. It allows you divide your data by a fixed period of time for the selected time span across an ad group, a campaign, or your entire account. The available time frames you can select when generating a time report include:
  • Hour of the day
  • Day of the week
  • Day
  • Week
  • Month
  • Quarter
  • Year

This report can be useful to see when your ads have an above/below average performance, letting you decide how to schedule your campaigns for when they are most likely to receive the greatest number of impressions and clicks. In particular, these reports are useful to analyze:

  • Day parting : It can be really useful to look at day of week and/or hour of day data to better optimize the way you’re allocating your budget
  • Reporting & Trend Analysis: The “day” report can be very helpful letting you understand different trends, both at a high level (account wide) and at the ad group and campaign levels.
  • Seasonality & Historical Data:  The monthly, quarterly, and yearly views can help you understand historical account information, longer-term trends, and seasonality of your campaign.

The final URL is where customers land after they click your ad. With this report it is possible to see which of your URLs is most effective in engaging your visitors and helping them make the conversions you want. There are three main reasons to create and analyze final URL reports:

  • Testing different landing pages
  • Finding low performing landing pages
  • Checking your account for broken links

For example, if we find that a particular final URL is not performing well from a cost per acquisition point of view, we could find a new page that better fits, or build a new page suited for our ad. In the same way, if there is a page that has performances above average, it can be used as a good template for future or under performing pages. In this kind of report, as with any report in the dimension tab, you can customize the columns of the report by clicking “Customize Columns” from the “Columns” drop down menu.

There are two types of report based on the location of the user:
  • Geographic Report: your geographic data shows your customers’ physical locations or locations that they had shown interest in through searches on Google or Google Maps.
  • User location: your user location data shows only your customers’ physical locations, regardless of any locations they may be interested in.

Both reports can be created for the specified time span in the dimension tab from the “View” drop down menu. There are four possible types of geographical locations where clicks could come from: countries, regions, cities and the most specific location AdWords can extract from an ad impression. For example, in the U.S.A. the most specific location is the postal code, while in India is the region.

Often area can be “unspecified”. It happens if the IP is not trackable or the actual location of the webpage is not trackable. It also happens when someone performs the search in one country but uses another country-specific domain. For example, the user is located in France, thus the IP is the French one, but she makes research using google.de.

Using these reports can help you to understand where your business has good or bad performances, so that you can understand where to put the focus in terms of efforts and budget, or which geographical areas to exclude from your targets.

Keyword and search term are two different elements. The search term makes reference to what the user types in Google when looking for something. The keywords are words that you want your ad to be triggered for. Keywords are the ones we have in our account (positives or negatives), search terms can show us new keywords we would like to add to our account. The search term report is one tool more, offered by Google, whose benefit is to find out what users look for. Which search terms got matched to your keywords or in other words which search terms triggered your ads. And all this information can be used to refine your performance. The Search Terms Report (STR) is a powerful tool to find:
  1. New keywords or new combinations of keywords.
  2. If the traffic is going where you want it to go. Helping in the optimization process in order to conduct traffic from broad to exact and phrase keywords.
  3. New negative keywords.

To create a Search Term Report, you can go in the keywords tab and from the drop menu ´Details´ select the search term option.