Google Ads is interested in us making conclusions on optimizing advertising campaigns faster and clearer and developing our projects. Therefore, at the end of 2019, the system introduced a novelty – explanations. Thanks to this tool, we don’t have to zoom through the tabs at the ad group and keyword phrases level to find the reason for the budget spending and drawdown, or to figure out which keyword can drive conversions.
The explanations are currently in beta testing. And this means that:
For now, explanations are only available in manual or CPC search campaigns;
comments are shown only for impressions, clicks and costs;
explanations appear only if the threshold for volume and percentage of change is reached, so it is not so easy to catch them.
What statistics look like with explanations
When an explanation is available, the percentage change in statistics is highlighted in blue and becomes a hyperlink. When you hover the mouse over it, a small window appears with a proposal to see the possible reasons for this change.
First, let’s see what the explanations in the shows tell us. Since this tool is still in beta, all comments are in English, I have never met in Russian yet.
Campaign Changes Summary:
the number of impressions increased by 32%;
clicks grew by 60%;
CTR increased by 22%;
the share of impressions increased by 4%;
the percentage of lost impressions decreased by 8%.
Not bad. If Google has information, it immediately offers to see whose ads were shown above ours and who could have influenced our performance.
If you click on View auction insights, Google will send us to the “Auction statistics” tab. Here you can see in detail which battle took place at the auction.
A very convenient explanation about those who are shown above: we can immediately analyze the ads of competitors and understand where to strengthen in positions so as not to give others the lead – such a competitive express analysis.
It also displays a general summary that says:
where the changes were found;
that other areas have been tested too, but there are no changes to explain.
In this campaign, we can see that fluctuating visibility has led to the change – our ads are more likely to win the auction. In the budget itself, campaign settings, search interest, targeting, and so on, nothing changed and did not affect growth.
In another campaign, we often adjusted the budget depending on its behavior, and just the explanations tell us about it:
A handy feature – if you click on “27 changes”, Google will send us to the tab of the changes made during this period. We can see what our actions led to a drop in campaign activity.
The second area where explanations have a lot to say is keywords. Here the tool shows changes and activity of phrases.
From this tip, you can see what most often interested users and what needs to be emphasized. Or find that, due to poor quality cleaning of semantics, some keyword eats up the budget.
Everything here is similar to campaign data.
Explanations are an interesting innovation that will become an additional tool for analyzing performance and making optimization decisions. You can look at campaigns and keywords from a different angle, discover insight, or accidentally stumble upon a keyword that is long overdue. It is convenient to remember what manipulations were carried out with the campaign and assess whether they led to any effect.
Hopefully, when the tool comes out of beta, it will become Russian-speaking and more informative. Now explanations are available only for manual campaigns and when a certain volume is accumulated – this, of course, is understandable, but it limits and does not allow to fully use this useful feature.