About attribution reports

Once you've set up conversion tracking, you'll have access to attribution reports, a handy set of reports about your conversions (those important actions your customers take on your website, such as a purchase or email signup).

Benefits

Attribution reports show you the paths customers take to complete conversions and provide insights into how your different advertising efforts work together to create conversions. For example, you can see whether certain keywords assisted conversions that eventually happened through other keywords. This gives you a better sense of your potential customers' conversion paths than just looking at the last-clicked keyword.

How to find your attribution reports

Attribution reports help you understand different aspects of your conversions data. Attribution reports are only available for Search Network ads.

To find attribution reports:

  1. Sign in to your Google Ads account.
  2. Click the tools icon in the upper right.
  3. Under "Measurement," select Attribution.

Tip

If you manage multiple Google Ads accounts with a manager account (MCC), you can use cross-account conversion tracking. Once you've set up cross-account conversion tracking, use the attribution reports in the manager account (MCC). 

How to use report controls 

Attribution reports have the following report controls. Use these controls to customize your reports and review the data that matters most to your business.

Date range

The date range you select determines which conversions to include in the report. Click the date range in the upper right of the page to update the date range for the entire report. If you opt to compare date ranges, click the "< >" symbols that appear in each column to expand the column and view data for each date range.

Dimension

Click the "Dimension" drop-down menu in the upper left of the page to change what slice of data the report displays. For most reports, you can select Campaigns, Ad groups, Keywords, or Devices.

Conversion action

Select which conversion actions to include in your report by clicking the "Conversion action" drop-down menu in the upper center of the page. By default, each report includes all conversion actions that you've selected in the "Include in 'Conversions'" setting.

Lookback window

Use the "Lookback window" control to adjust an attribution report's lookback window to 30, 60, or 90 days. Most reports show a 30-day lookback window when you open them.

Note: The "Lookback window" control is different than the "Conversion window" setting.

A lookback window in the attribution reports determines how far back in time from a conversion ad interactions are eligible for attribution credit. For example, a 30-day lookback window considers ad interactions that occurred from December 31 to January 30 when allocating credit for a conversion that happens on January 30.

A conversion window is the period of time after an ad interaction during which a conversion is recorded in Google Ads. Learn more about conversion windows

The "Model comparison" report has one more lookback window option than the other reports. The "Default" option sets the report's lookback window to the same number of days you selected as the conversion window for each conversion action within Tools > Measurement > Conversions.

The "Overview" report

The "Overview" report gives you a high-level view of your conversion paths. It tells you information like how many days and ad interactions it took users to convert, how many of your conversions included ad interactions on more than one device, and which campaigns are most effective at assisting conversions. This provides valuable insight into your customers' journeys to conversion.

The "Top paths" report

The "Top paths" report shows you the most common paths your customers take to complete a conversion. It provides this information based on the ads your customers clicked before a conversion took place. Within this report, you can see more details by selecting options from the drop-down menus.

"View" menu

By default, the report shows paths, which provide a detailed look at the sequences of users' ad interactions prior to conversion. Successive ad interactions with the same dimension value are consolidated into a single touchpoint showing the number of repeat interactions.

Select Transition paths from the "View" menu at the top of the report to see a higher-level view of the sequences of users’ ad interactions prior to conversion. Transition paths treat successive ad interactions with the same dimension value as a single interaction. This is useful for seeing how customers move between different keywords, ad groups, or campaigns on their path to conversion. 

"Devices" dimension

Select the Devices dimension to see paths broken down by your audience's devices, for which we show the device type (desktop, tablet, mobile). Two adjacent elements in the path are for different devices, but not necessarily a different device type. This allows you to examine the order in which people typically use different devices before they complete a conversion.

The "Path metrics" report

The "Path metrics" report shows how long--and how many interactions--it takes for users to convert. It also shows how many conversions happened after a given number of days or interactions, and how much those conversions are worth.

"Avg. days/hours to conversion"

By default, the report shows "Avg. days to conversion." This view tells you how much time it takes for a customer to complete a conversion, with a row for each day to conversion from the last ad interaction.

Use the "Measure from" drop-down menu to show the time measured from either the first or the last ad interaction. Use the "Measure in" drop-down menu to select Days or Hours.

The "Avg. days/hours to conversion" view can give you insight into the length of your online sales cycle. If your ads are an immediate call-to-action, such as a one-day sale or a sign-up for an event, you'll want to see fewer days/hours to conversion. If you're running a brand awareness campaign, longer time lags (that is, more days/hours to conversion) might be more appropriate. You can use this information to help you understand whether your campaigns are working the way you expect them to, and to determine what conversion window is best for each conversion action.

"Avg. interactions to conversion"

To see how many interactions it takes for users to convert, select the Avg. interactions to conversion tab. You can use this view to see what kind of frequency is most valuable for driving conversions. Keep in mind, this report only reflects the keywords and ads in your Google Ads account, so if these paths of interactions seem shorter than you might expect, that's why.

The "Assisted conversions" report

The "Assisted conversions" report shows the number of conversions your advertising assisted. Often, the last click before a conversion gets all the credit. But along the way, other ad interactions might have guided your customers toward that conversion. The "Click-assisted conversions" column can help you see that fuller picture. It shows the number of conversions in which a campaign or ad group appeared on the conversion path, but was not the final conversion interaction.

Note: If an ad interaction occurs multiple times in a path, Google Ads only attributes one assisted conversion to that ad interaction.

This report is a great resource to quickly identify which of your advertising efforts are helping to drive the most conversions. You may find that some keywords are the last click for very few conversions but actually assisted many conversions. In those instances, you may choose to test increasing investment for these keywords to see whether you can drive more conversions for your business.

The "Model comparison" report

An attribution model is the rule, or set of rules, that determines how credit for conversions is assigned to steps on conversion paths. Learn more about the "Model comparison" report and how to use attribution models in About attribution models.

Conversion data in attribution reports vs. "Campaigns" page

There may be differences in conversion data between your attribution reports and the "Campaigns" page. This is due to differences in how conversions are counted across networks, time of event, and conversion sources.

Attribution reports can help you estimate how changes to your attribution model might impact conversion reporting. Conversions in the "Campaigns" page can help you evaluate and optimize performance after you've changed your attribution model. You can also see past performance in attribution reports by using the "current model" columns.

How reporting varies

Here's how conversions are reported differently in attribution reports vs. the "Campaigns" page:

  Attribution reports "Campaigns" page
Time of event Time of conversion Time of the ad query preceding the click that led to conversion
Network Google Search Network traffic Search (including Search partners), Display, YouTube
Conversion source Conversions on advertiser website, phone number click conversions, imported goals/transactions from Analytics, and imported offline conversions All sources including offline conversions, app conversions, store visits, etc.

Time of event

The primary conversion columns on the "Campaigns" page show conversions based on the time of the ad impression preceding the click that led to conversion, not the time of the conversion. For example, if your ad was clicked last week and that traffic converted this week, both the click and the conversion are reported back to the last week in the primary conversions columns. This allows you to accurately measure metrics such as cost per conversion or return on ad spend, as ad spend is also calculated based on the time of the click.

You can report conversions and conversion values according to the time of conversion by adding new "(by conv. time)" columns to your "Campaigns" page. Learn more

Network

Data in the attribution reports is limited to Search traffic only, while data in the "Campaigns" page will include Search partner traffic, as well as Display or YouTube conversions. Keep in mind that traffic on these networks can only be reported on a last-click basis.

Conversion source

Certain conversion sources are supported in the "Campaigns" page but aren't available in the attribution reports. Attribution reports only count website conversions, phone number clicks conversions, and imported Analytics goals/transactions. Attribution reports don't count other sources such as app conversions and store visits. Imported offline conversions are compatible with attribution reports. It's recommended that you upload conversions every 1-2 days. Conversions must be at most 7 days old when uploaded. In the "Campaigns" page, these other sources are tracked but can only be reported on a last-click basis.

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