Google AdWords offers an incredible way for advertisers and businesses to reach potential customers and get their message in front of them.

With many different targeting options, advert formats and display options it’s important to make sure you’re tracking the right measurements in order to effectively judge the effectiveness of your advertising campaign. So let’s take a look at the AdWords metrics that actually matter and the ones that you should be focusing on to measure the performance of your website.

Traffic based metrics

These are the simplest form of measurement and are great for getting a rough overview of the performance of your marketing campaign. The ones that we’d recommend monitoring are:

Click-through rate (CTR)

This tells you how relevant your keywords are to your target audience. CTR is also one of the factors that determine the quality score of your adverts and ultimately the cost you’ll pay for your clicks.

Quality score

Quality score is used to help determine how relevant a keyword, advert and landing page are to a user’s search query. The main elements that affect quality score are: keyword and advert CTR, ad group keyword relevance and landing page quality.


If you want to see how many visitors are taking action on your adverts then clicks is the metric for you. Your click data will tell you which of your keywords are the most popular as well as highlighting any of your keywords that aren’t performing as well as you’d expect.

Conversion based metrics

As well as measuring traffic based metrics it’s also important to look at conversion based metrics in order to see what actions customers are taking. For example if customers are placing an order on your website, filling in an enquiry form or phoning your business, these are all actions you’ll want to be able to track. Luckily tracking these actions is as simple as adding some conversion tracking code on your website.

Conversion rate

With conversion tracking in place you’ll be able to see what percentage of people that click on your adverts are converting on your website. Whether completing a purchase or downloading a brochure you’ll be able to track these and see what percentage of people are taking the actions you want.

Cost per conversion

Your cost per conversion is a great metric for helping you to determine how profitable your campaigns, ad groups and keywords are. This will tell you how much your conversions are costing your business. Once you know how much your conversions are costing you’ll be able to see which are the most profitable and the most valuable for your business.

It’s important to look at your cost per conversion on a granular level as your products and services may have different profit margins and associated costs. One mistake that advertisers often make is focusing on a set price for their cost per conversion based on their average customer value. By looking at the data on a keyword basis you’ll be able to avoid making this same mistake.