If you use Salesforce's Sales Cloud® to track leads or opportunities or both, you can import your offline conversions from Salesforce's Sales Cloud into Google Ads. This will help you better measure how your online Google Ads investments are generating offline value.
In this article, we’ll go over the benefits of this feature and the basics of how the process works. When you’re ready, you can then follow the instructions to begin importing conversions from Salesforce.
Why use it
You use Google Ads to bring in new customers for your business. You also use Salesforce’s Sales Cloud to track when new leads turn into paying customers. But how do you connect the dots? How do you see which Google Ads keywords, ads, and campaigns are doing the best job at driving the qualified leads and new sales that you track in Salesforce?
With Google Ads Conversion Import for Salesforce, you can automatically count Google Ads conversions for any of the lead statuses and opportunity stages (we’ll call these milestones) that you’re already tracking in Salesforce. This lets you understand how your Google Ads investment results in the most important milestones in your sales funnel. With the information you learn, you can then adjust your Google Ads account to make sure you are driving the right kind of traffic.
You’ve created ads to send prospective customers to a contact form on your website. When people fill out the form, they are entered as new leads in Salesforce, and you use Salesforce to track every stage in the sales process.
You’ve already set up conversion tracking to see when prospective customers who click your ads submit the contact form. You’ve learned that two of your keywords are especially good at driving these leads. But you know that not all leads are equal: are both keywords resulting in sales?
You link your Salesforce and Google Ads accounts, and you decide to track two Salesforce milestones as conversions: when a lead transitions to an opportunity, and when the opportunity results in a sale.
Once you start importing these conversions, you learn that while the two keywords are both good at driving prospect form submissions on your website, one keyword is much better than the other at driving leads that eventually result in opportunities and sales. You decide to increase your bids for the more successful keyword, and experiment with adding new keywords that are similar to the keyword that was most successful.
How it works
Once you’ve set up Google Ads Conversion Import for Salesforce, here’s how the process will work:
When someone clicks your ad and goes to your website, your website captures a unique ID—called a “Google click ID,” or “GCLID”—and stores it in a cookie. Google Ads uses this ID to determine which click on which ad gets credit for any future conversions.
When the customer submits a lead form on your website, your website will pass along the GCLID to Salesforce and store it within the corresponding lead and any future opportunities that are derived from this lead.
Google Ads will regularly check your Salesforce account to see if you’ve recorded any new important milestones that resulted from ads. (In the setup process, you’ll be able to pick which lead statuses and opportunity stages you want to track as conversions.) Google Ads will know if this milestone originated from a lead from an ad, because if it did, it will have that unique ID that your website stored and passed along to Salesforce. If so, Google Ads will count that milestone as a Google Ads conversion.
What you'll need to do
To make the process work as described above, you’ll need to make some updates to your website, Salesforce account, and Google Ads account. If someone else manages the Salesforce account for your business, you’ll want that person’s help with some parts of this setup. Also, if a web developer maintains your website, you’ll need his or her help as well.
We’ll give you an overview of the setup process below. To see the complete instructions, see Import conversions from Salesforce, or click the links for each step below to go directly to that part of the setup. Also, make sure to read the requirements to ensure you’re ready to link your accounts.
- Configure your Salesforce account. Create a custom GCLID field in your lead and opportunity objects. Without this ID, Google Ads won't know which click to attribute the conversion to. If someone else manages the Salesforce account for your company, you’ll need their help with this step.
- Adjust your Salesforce web-to-lead form. Modify the web-to-lead form on your website to upload the click ID (along with the rest of the form data) to Salesforce. Your Salesforce account administrator can help you with this step.
- Edit your website to save the click ID in a cookie. Google Ads will give you a piece of code to add to your website so you can collect and store the click ID. If you have a web developer, he or she can help you with this.
- Test that your system is working. Add the ID parameter to your website’s URL, submit a test lead, and see if the ID is passed along to Salesforce.
- Link your Google Ads and Salesforce accounts. You’ll need to enter a username and password for your Salesforce account. If someone else is the account administrator, ask them to give you a username and password, or join you for this part of the process.
- Decide which Salesforce milestones you want to track as conversions, and how often Google Ads should check for them.
- Import your conversions. You’re done setting up, and your Google Ads accounts will now regularly import your conversions from Salesforce.
What counts as a conversion?
You can configure your Google Ads account to record a conversion for any or every lead status and opportunity stage you track in your Salesforce account. Google Ads will record a conversion every time a lead or an opportunity is set to the respective status or stage. Note: If a Salesforce user skips a status or stage and sets it to the next or last one, Google Ads will not record a conversion for the skipped stages.
Your Salesforce account has the following Opportunity stages: 1. "Sales Qualified," 2. "Needs Analysis," 3. "Proposal," 4. "Negotiation," 5. "Closed Won," and 6. "Closed Lost."
In Google Ads, you choose to record a conversion every time the following stages are reached: 3. “Proposal," 4. “Negotiation," and 5. “Closed Won."
In Salesforce, a user moves the Opportunity from 1. "Sales Qualified" to 3. "Proposal," and then later marks it as 5. “Closed Won."
In Google Ads, you'll see conversions for "Proposal" and "Closed Won," but not for "Negotiation" (since the user never set the opportunity to "Negotiation").
If a Salesforce user moves the lead status or opportunity stage back to a previous value (from B to A), Google Ads won’t count a conversion for the step it moved back to (A), but will count conversions as it moves forward again, including counting the step it was moved back to (B).
About Salesforce data in Google Ads
Google Ads regularly imports the Google Click ID, relevant lead statuses and opportunity stages, and relevant metadata from Salesforce into Google Ads. Salesforce is not responsible for any impact on that data arising from the transmission.
For more information on Salesforce data in Google Ads, click the links below.
To make sure your Google Ads conversion data reflects the offline conversions tracked in your Salesforce Sales Cloud account(s), Google Ads needs to regularly retrieve and store some information about your lead statuses and opportunity stages.
Once you begin using this solution, Google Ads needs to store certain data from your Salesforce account in order to maintain a consistent understanding of the milestones you want to treat as conversions. The data we store includes your account's Org Name and Org ID, and copies of your account's Lead Status and Opportunity Stage value (such as "qualified" and "deal won," respectively).
In addition to this information, Google Ads will regularly retrieve the following fields from your Sales Cloud account to identify which conversions need to be recorded in Google Ads. Note that Google Ads will only pull this data for Leads and Opportunities that have a value in the GCLID field.
- Lead: custom "GCLID" field
- Lead: Status History
- Opportunity: Amount
- Opportunity: custom "GCLID" field
- Opportunities: Stage History
This regularly downloaded information will be deleted within a few days, with the exception of your upload history logs. These logs are available to you for 90 days, so you can see what conversions and conversion values were uploaded for which GCLIDs on which days. After 90 days, they’re deleted.
This means that we do not view or otherwise retrieve information that can be used to identify the people or businesses with which you are doing business (such as Lead or Opportunity Name).
We understand the importance and sensitivity of your data, and we're committed to protecting the confidentiality and security of the data you share with us.
More specifically, here is how we treat your Salesforce data:
- Limited data use. We won’t use your data files for any purpose other than to update your conversion metrics.
- Limited data access. We won’t share your data files with other Google teams other than to update your conversion metrics. We use employee access controls to protect your data files from unauthorized access.
- Limited data sharing. We won’t share your data files with any third party, including other advertisers, except that we may share this data for legal reasons, such as to meet any applicable law, regulation, legal process or enforceable governmental request.
We’re also committed to ensuring that the systems we use to store your data files remain secure and reliable. We have dedicated security engineering teams to protect against external threats to our systems, and we store all your data files in an encrypted format to protect against unauthorized access.