Mobile Advertising assessment study guide

About mobile app conversion tracking

If you use Google Ads to promote Android or iOS mobile apps, you can use conversion tracking to help you see how effectively your ads lead to app installs and in-app activity. This article explains the different types of mobile conversions and how to track them.

NoteNew privacy measures are in place for iOS 14 users. These may impact your conversion tracking in Google Ads. We recommend that you use Google Analytics for Firebase SDK, as Firebase SDK automatically integrates with SKAdnetwork, Apple’s framework for campaign measurement that adheres to these new privacy measures. Keep an eye on updates from Apple to learn more and to learn any steps you can take.

Types of mobile app conversions you can track

You can track a variety of conversions for both Android and iOS apps:

  • App installs: Conversion tracking can measure how effectively your ads are leading people to install your mobile apps. There are a couple of different ways to track this:
    • Downloads from Google Play: For Android apps, you can track when someone who clicked your ad downloads your app from the Google Play store. Conversions are tracked automatically from Google Play, and you don't need to add tracking code to your app.

    • First opens: For both Android and iOS apps, you can track the first time someone who clicked your ad opens your app after installing it. You can use this option if you use Firebase, or if you use a third-party app analytics provider.

  • In-app actions, such as purchases: If you're using Google Ads to drive purchases or other actions within your app, use conversion tracking to measure your campaigns' effectiveness. You can automatically track in-app purchases for Android apps that use in-app billing, or you can track custom in-app actions through Firebase, by adding code to your app, or by using a third-party app analytics provider.

Reporting for App campaigns on iOS

To offer a more complete report of iOS app campaign conversions, we may use models based on aggregated and anonymous data from users who have previously signed into Google services; these models predict iOS app conversions that we are unable to observe directly. This allows us to provide complete reporting on iOS app campaign behavior that combines observed and modeled conversions.

Note: Complete reporting for app ads served to iOS users will only be available within Google Ads.


How to set up mobile app conversion tracking

Here are a few different ways you can track mobile app conversions:

How to view conversions

"All conversions" and "view-through conversions"

  1. Sign into Google Ads.
  2. Select App campaigns in the campaigns menu at the top left.
  3. Click Campaigns or Ads groups.
  4. Click on the “Columns” icon in the icon menu at the top right of the campaigns list.
  5. Click Modify columns.
  6. Click the down arrow for “Conversions” to see all metric options from conversions.
  7. Check the boxes beside “View-through conv.” and “All conv. (by conv. time)”
  8. Click Apply.
  9. Now when you view campaigns or ad groups, you will be able to see all conversions and view-through conversions as metrics columns.

For select accounts: "Engaged-view conversions", "clicks", and "engagements"(use these to measure conversions for video ads in your app campaigns)

  1. Sign into Google Ads.
  2. Select App campaigns in the campaigns menu at the top left.
  3. Click Campaigns or Ads groups
  4. Click on the “Segments” icon in the icon menu at the top right of the campaigns list.
  5. Select “Conversions”
  6. In the “Conversions” menu that opens, select “Ad interaction type”
  7. You’ll be able to see the number of conversions that resulted from “Clicks”, “Engaged views”, and “Engagements”.

Target CPA bidding for apps

Because these campaigns are optimized to count app downloads, there isn’t a waiting period for Target CPA. As soon as you've set up conversion tracking, you can use Target CPA bidding to help get more installs at your cost-per-install goal.

Video ad conversion tracking for apps

Conversion tracking is unique for video ads. An Engaged-view conversion is counted when someone watches at least 10 seconds of your video ad on YouTube or the Display Network. Conversion reporting for videos includes click-through conversions and Engaged-view conversion windows. App download conversions are counted only if the install happens within two days of the engagement. For people who click on your ad, conversions are counted if they install your app within 30 days.

Billing for your video ad will vary depending on where it’s shown. If it’s on YouTube, you’ll be billed for each impression. If it’s on the Display Network, you’ll be billed for each engagement.

Security and privacy for website tracking

Google's security standards are strict. Google Ads only collects data on pages where you have deployed the associated tags.

Please ensure you're providing users with clear and comprehensive information about the data you collect on your websites, and getting consent for that collection where legally required.


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