Connecting AdWords and Analytics

Why link AdWords and Analytics?

Traffic from AdWords will be automatically tracked as such in Analytics. You can see information such as bounce rate and pages per visit for different campaigns, ad groups, keywords, search terms and so on. You’ll also be able to incorporate AdWords information, like clicks and impressions, into Analytics reports.

Also, goal completions in Analytics can be imported into AdWords to define conversions. This means you can:

  • Define conversions that aren’t page views, by using a goal that’s defined by an event (eg clicking a link to download a pdf).
  • Have conversion tracking without having to put extra code up on the site.
  • If you’ve got an ecommerce site with Analytics ecommerce tracking set up, then if you import transactions as conversions into AdWords it will automatically import the transactions’ values.

However, there are downsides of importing conversions this way:

  • It takes at least a day for data from Analytics to get into AdWords (sometimes several days)
  • You can’t have ‘view through conversions’ if your conversions are imported from Analytics.

How do I link them up?

I don’t think there’s much point of me repeating what’s already up on the Google Help pages – so see the full instructions here!

How do I import conversions into AdWords, then?

Full instructions here – but note that when you’ve linked your accounts and set Analytics to share with AdWords, you then need someone to click on an ad and complete the relevant goal / transaction, andthen you need to wait (probably an extra day) until the data are imported into AdWords.

I’ve got my accounts linked, but I see differences!

You should expect some discrepancies:

  • Analytics visits are not the same things as AdWords clicks – the same visitor may click multiple times, or the visitor may leave the page before the Analytics code has properly loaded.
  • Analytics and AdWords attribute goals/conversions differently – AdWords will claim anything that happens up to 30 days after someone clicks an ad, whereas (by default) Analytics uses last-click attribution.
  • Analytics and AdWords also time goals/conversions differently – if a user clicks on an ad on Monday and converts on Tuesday, AdWords will say the conversion was on Monday (when the ad was clicked) and Analytics will say Tuesday (when the conversion actually happened).

Anything else to remember?

  • AdWords accounts are connected to Analytics at profile level – if you see AdWords data coming through as ‘(not set)’ you may have connected your AdWords account to the wrong Analytics profile.
  • If you change the name of a campaign or ad group in AdWords, the old name will still appear in Analytics for any traffic that came before the change, and the new name will appear for traffic that comes after the change.
  • Analytics thinks the week starts on Sunday; AdWords thinks it starts on Monday.
  • While it’s not likely to affect many people: AdWords counts the Isle of Mann as part of the UK; Analytics does not.

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