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.
Types of mobile app conversions that 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 that 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, then use conversion tracking to measure the effectiveness of your campaigns. 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 behaviour that combines observed and modelled conversions.
How to set up mobile app conversion tracking
Here are a few different ways you can track mobile app conversions:
- Track mobile app conversions with Firebase: Track first opens, in-app purchases or custom events by importing events from Firebase.
- Track Android app conversions with Google Play: Track app installs and in-app purchases automatically from Google Play
- Import mobile app conversions from a third-party app analytics provider: Track first opens and in-app actions by linking your Google Ads account with a third-party analytics tool.
Where to see reports
You can see the results of your app install ads on the Campaigns page. If you’re using conversion tracking to count app installs, you can customise the columns to see the number of downloads resulting from your ads.
Target CPA bidding for apps
Because these campaigns are optimised 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.
Note: Due to limitations in coverage, first open app install conversions are not available on iOS search app install campaigns.
Video ad conversion tracking for apps
Conversion tracking is unique for video ads. A video engagement is counted when someone watches at least 10 seconds of your video ad on YouTube or the Display Network. 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 that 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.