PPC reporting is perhaps not the most glamorous part of paid search marketing, but it is extremely important for thorough, accurate and properly focused campaign reports.
Without it, clients cannot properly evaluate the success of their campaigns in terms of either lead/e-commerce revenue or return-on-investment. Best practice for pay-per-click reporting is to have PPC specialists prepare customized, monthly reports detailing what work was completed, along with an action plan moving forward.
PPC Reporting Breakdown
- Accounts. Monthly reports should show rolling 13-month numbers for media spend, impressions, clicks, average CPC, average CTR, and average conversion rate, in total and broken down for Google and Bing results. These are key metrics for determining lead/e-commerce revenue production efficiency and ROI.
- Conversions. For lead generation campaigns, monthly paid search reporting must detail media spend, days active, average validated leads per day, average cost per validated lead, total form leads, total phone leads, Google form and phone leads, and Bing form and phone leads. For e-commerce campaigns, key data includes media spend, transactions, average order amount, revenue and ROAS.
- Campaigns. Important data for individual Google and Bing campaigns includes impressions, clicks, average CTR, average CPC, media spend, and conversions. For lead generation campaigns, average cost per validated lead and average CVR (conversion rate) data should be included; for e-commerce campaigns, transactions, revenue and average CVR apply.
- Phone Calls. Every phone lead generated by a PPC campaign should be reported, along with all supporting details, such as the time of the call, identity of the caller and topic(s) discussed.
- Form Submissions. Every form lead generated by a PPC campaign should be reported, along with supporting details (i.e., all filled form fields).
- Activity. PPC campaigns should never coast on autopilot. Reports should provide details about tactical and strategic activity that took place during the month, such as major keyword changes, bid strategy adjustments, A/B split tests conducted and test results.
- Action Plan. In addition to summarizing the last month's activity, PPC reporting should also summarize strategic and tactical activity slated for the upcoming month, including planned split tests, reorganization of ad groups, campaigns to be paused, etc.
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Lead Validation in Paid Search Reporting
Lead validation is a frequently overlooked aspect of PPC reporting is the necessity to separate true sales leads from other types of conversions. A phone call or form submission could be a sales lead, but it could also be a misdial, sales solicitation, customer service request, spam, or something else. Straight North's client data indicates that as much as 40% of PPC conversions are not sales leads. Thus, if PPC reporting lumps all conversions together without validating sales leads, the productivity of the campaign could be as much as 40% overestimated.
When reports are thorough, accurate and focused on the proper metrics, clients can make informed decisions about whether to expand or contract PPC campaigns. Reputable PPC management agencies always provide transparent reports including all of the information detailed here. When vetting agencies, ask to see sample reports or at least a summary of the data they contain. A solid agency will be more than happy to provide one or the other.
Not getting the PPC reporting your campaign deserves? Give us a call now at 855-779-7675 or request a quote today.