PPC Conversion Tracking: A Complete Guide

Laura Caveney
13th June 2022

If you’re running paid ads to drive conversions then you need to have a good understanding of PPC conversion tracking to ensure you’re measuring your true impact. 

We found that 54% of marketers use PPC as a main marketing channel. We also found that 21% of marketers struggle to effectively track conversions via this channel. 

So where’s the disconnect? 

PPC conversion tracking should be a staple of any marketers’ reporting. 

In this blog we’ll go through: 

So, let’s get started. 

What is PPC conversion tracking? 

PPC conversion tracking is a way to track users’ meaningful actions after engaging with your paid ad. Each advertising platform offers different means of conversion tracking, but they all work in a similar way. 

If you’re running paid ads and you want an accurate view of your return on investment, it’s absolutely essential to set up PPC conversion tracking. 

In fact, setting up appropriate tracking is the first thing to do when considering paid advertising. 

What’s a good PPC conversion rate? 

The average conversion rate for PPC is 3.9%. But for industries like travel, that average shot up to 8.5%. Meanwhile, for the automotive industry, the average dropped down to just 1.3% conversion rate on PPC. 

So, while PPC can definitely be an impactful option for many businesses, you might not get the conversion rates you’re looking for. 

💡 Pro Tip

Read the full average conversion rates by marketing source to see how you compare to your industry average. 

But remember, to fully understand your average PPC conversion rate, you need to first be tracking those conversions. 

How do you calculate PPC conversions? 

PPC conversion rate is easy to measure.

The PPC conversion rate formula is: (Conversions/number of ad interactions) x 100 = conversion rate. 

By tracking conversions happening on paid channels like Google Ads and Bing Ads, you can start to get an understanding of the impact of your ads. 

Instead of just tracking things like clicks and impressions, you can get a fuller view of what works and what doesn’t. 

How do I track my PPC performance? 

Tracking the impact of your PPC performance isn’t easy. But it isn’t impossible. 

Major advertising platforms offer in-house conversion tracking options that make it easier. You can also invest in marketing analytics tools like marketing attribution that can do all the hard work for you. 

🚀 Pro Tip 

Read the full guide to marketing attribution to better understand how this marketing tool can help you link closed revenue back to your marketing touchpoints. 

Google Ads conversion tracking

Google Ads conversion tracking is a tool designed to help marketers better understand the impact of their paid advertising. 

You use a GCLID to connect a user from a Google Ad click to meaningful action on site. 

✏️ Note 

The GCLID can be used to connect users in a marketing attribution tool too. With attribution and the GCLID working together, you can view your paid ads, campaigns and even keywords by how much revenue and how many leads they brought in. 

You can track key actions that occur following a click to your site via a paid ad. 

These include: 

Related: How to track phone calls in Google Analytics

You can also track app installs and actions plus you can import actions. 

This is great for when you want to improve offline conversion tracking as you can link offline events to online ad clicks. 

💡Pro Tip 

Learn exactly how to track your conversions in Google Ads with our complete guide. We’ll show you exactly how to set up the right tracking to get started. 

How to track leads from Google Ads

Bing conversion tracking

Equally, Bing uses a slice of code on its ad links to help you track your conversions. Before you start spending money on Bing, you should set up the necessary tracking. 

In this case, you need to find and install the Bing Universal Event Tag with Google Tag Manager. 

Unlike Google Ads, you can’t create conversions direct in-app. You need to set up the necessary conditions for each event to ensure they’re tracked and linked back to your Bing account. 

Read more about Bing conversion tracking

How to go beyond PPC conversion tracking 

Ok, we know. You’ve just set up all your conversion tracking. Why would you want to now go beyond it? 

Well, the truth is, clicks and actions on your site just aren’t enough. 

While you can likely track your inbound lead count this way, that still doesn’t tell you much. 

After all, a lead doesn’t guarantee a sale. 

In order to get beyond a sale, you need to be able to connect revenue. 

Related: How to connect revenue to your marketing 

By connecting revenue to your paid ads, you’ll be able to definitively prove what works and what doesn’t when it comes to: 

This funnel view will help you make quick changes to your marketing outputs so that you can make more revenue using less budget. 

Connect revenue to your PPC conversion tracking 

Want to connect revenue to your marketing measurement? 

We don’t blame you. It’s the best metric to prove your marketing impact. 

Book a demo with Ruler to see how you can attribute revenue to your marketing touchpoints. Or, download our guide to why you need Ruler in your marketing stack.