About estimated conversions

These days, customers are constantly connected. They use many devices to communicate, entertain themselves, and shop. For advertisers, it can be challenging to measure conversions that start on one device or browser and end on another. And it can be challenging to see how some ad clicks lead to store visits or phone call conversions.

AdWords can give you more insight into how your ads influence new conversion types, such as phone calls, store visits and conversions that are completed after a customer uses more than one device or browser. You can do this with the Estimated Total Conversions column. This column combines the Conversions column and estimated conversion types, such as cross-device conversions or call conversions from ads shown on tablets and computers.

Keep in mind

Cross-device conversions, a part of estimated total conversions, are tracked only for AdWords ads traffic on google.com and the Google Display Network at this time. Also, cross-device estimates aren't compatible with imported goals from Google Analytics or imported offline conversion tracking.

Not every advertiser will have these estimated conversions because of limited data. For instance, we only show data when we are very confident that our cross-device estimates are highly accurate. In some cases, we'll show a "--" when you might have cross-device conversions, but there isn't enough data for us to confidently make an estimate.

Benefits

Consumers learn about your business across multiple devices and screens, so you'll want to attribute your conversions — online, in-store visits, or over the phone — to the right campaign or ad group.

Here are some of the benefits of using estimated total conversions to make important advertising decisions:

  • See how your AdWords campaigns influence your conversions across devices and browsers, on the phone, and in-store visits.
  • Make more informed business decisions about how you bid online.
  • Make better decisions about allocating resources between your online and offline budgets more easily.
  • Optimize your mobile bids. Just filter your data by device type so you can compare estimated total conversions for each.

Requirements

To start using estimated total conversions, you'll need to do the following:

  • Use conversion tracking
  • Record enough conversions in your account for us to make cross-device conversion estimates. The exact number varies for different advertisers because of how estimated conversions are calculated.

Once you've met these two requirements, you can find estimated conversions by signing into AdWords, clicking on the campaigns tab, and looking for the "Estimated Total Conversions" column.

We're unable to provide cross-device conversion estimates for conversion data imported from Analytics Goals or offline conversions at this time.

As we improve our technology, we'll be looking into covering more of your traffic. This means cross-device conversion numbers are likely to increase when we include more products.

Conversions that can be estimated

Click the links below to learn more about new conversion types that can help you make more informed decisions about your online advertising investments:

Conversions across devices

Cross-device conversions are counted when people click an ad on one device or browser and then convert on a different one.

Two examples of a cross-device conversion

  • Maria's planning a family vacation. In the morning, while waiting for her train to work, she looks up potential destinations on her mobile phone by searching on Google.com. She clicks on an ad for "Honolulu hotels," and likes the website that the mobile ad introduces her to. Later that evening, when she's at home on her tablet, Maria returns to that website to book the trip for her family.
  • While looking at a website on his work computer, John clicks on an image ad for movie tickets. Later, he decides to see a movie and uses his home computer to go directly to the website that the ad suggested and makes a purchase.

 

Conversions across browsers
Cross-browser conversions are counted when people click on an AdWords ad on one type of Internet browser, and then complete a conversion action (such as making a purchase or filling out an information request form) on a different type of browser. Cross-browser conversions can often happen on the same device.

Example of a cross-browser conversion

When a browser is launched in an app, it's often considered separate from the general browser on the phone. Similarly, people might use Chrome one day and another brand of browser the next.
Calls
If you use call extensions with Google forwarding numbers, you can count calls as conversions as follows:
  • Conversions generated by calls from mobile search ads are counted in standard conversions that can be used in Conversion Optimizer.
  • Calls placed after viewing ads on tablets and computers are included in the Estimated Total Conversions column.

These updates will be available for advertisers in the US, United Kingdom, Germany, and France.

Did you know...

Phone calls are an important channel for research and purchasing with 70% of mobile searchers reporting using click to call functionality to connect with a business directly from the search results. In fact, consumers make more than 40M calls directly from Google ads every month.

Store visits
Store visit conversions are available for eligible US advertisers. If you're interested in using this feature, contact your AdWords account representative.

How it works

Cross-device and cross-browser conversions are estimated using aggregate and anonymized data from people who have previously signed in to Google. Based on this aggregated data, we create an anonymous, aggregate estimate of the number of cross-device conversions attributed to AdWords campaigns.

Like all other conversions, cross-device conversions uses what's called "last paid click" attribution. This means that the conversions are attributed to the ad that was last clicked before people make a purchase, submit a lead, download an app, place a call, or otherwise take a valuable action.

How to use it

You can use estimated conversions to inform your bidding. There are two main ways advertisers typically use estimated total conversions: by setting desktop bids and by setting mobile bid adjustments.

  • Computer bids: You can use estimated total conversions to guide how you set your computer bids. For example, compare the "Cost/Est. Total Conv." to the "Cost/Conversion" that you see now. If the "Cost/Est. Total Conv." is 10% lower, you can increase your computer bids for those campaigns by about 10% without adjusting your ROI targets.
  • Mobile bids: You can use mobile bid adjustments in your campaigns. This lets you change your bid for mobile ads, based on the value those ads provide. Many advertisers look at the ratio between estimated total conversions coming from mobile versus computer and tablet to get a sense of the right bid adjustment. To get the most out of your mobile advertising, here's a formula you can use to set your campaign-level mobile bid adjustment:
    Mobile bid adjustment = 100 * [(value per mobile ad click/value per desktop and tablet click) -1 ]

Sorting your data

The Estimated Total Conversions column can help you understand the relative contribution to total conversions that mobile, desktop, and tablet have had across your ads.

To filter your reports by the device where an ad click happened, follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to your AdWords account at https://adwords.google.com.
  2. Click the Campaigns tab.
  3. Click the Segment drop-down button and select Device.
Keep in mind:
  • Call conversions on the Search Network from both desktop and tablet are included in the "Desktop" row (call conversions from tablets can't be reported separately)
  • Mobile calls are included in the mobile row
  • Cross-device data for call conversions is only available for Search Network campaigns
  • The Estimated Total Conversions column can't be segmented by click type

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