Beyond last-click attribution

Official guide to attribution modeling in Google Search.

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The customer journey can be long and complex, not only across time but across devices. Here are Google's recommendations and best practices for attribution in Google Ads.

1. Determine how important going beyond last-click attribution is to your business

  • Assess how important going beyond the last click is for you.

Why: If your paths to purchase are direct enough, the default last-click approach may be the right choice.

Get started: Review your Model comparison report to compare different models and understand potential value.

Read more about determining your approach to attribution.

2. Choose an attribution model that best fits your needs

  • If you have enough conversions to qualify, consider using data-driven attribution.

Why: A data-driven model takes the guesswork out of what model works best for you but requires a larger number of conversions to work.

  • If you can’t use data-driven attribution, consider a rules-based attribution model.

Why: Your attribution model should align with your business strategy.

Get started: Set up an attribution model for your conversions.

Read more about choosing the right model for your needs.

3. Act on attribution

  • Bid to your chosen model.

Why: Your attribution model will give you a truer sense of the value of a keyword. That value should be used when setting bids.

  • Test your new attribution model.

Why: Before you commit to your new attribution model, test whether it delivers a higher volume of profitable conversions.

  • Change ads and landing pages to align with a customer’s place in the click path.

Why: If certain keywords tend to assist—rather than complete—conversions, your creatives and landing pages should take that insight into account.

Get started: Edit your text ads.

  • Re-examine early influence keywords based on your new attribution model.

Why: Many keywords provide value that last-click attribution doesn’t properly capture, including early influence keywords you may have paused in the past.

Read more about acting on attribution.

4. Evolve your approach to attribution as measurement gets better

  • Apply lessons from attribution in Google Ads to other marketing channels.

Why: What you learn about Google Ads clicks, in conjunction with insights from other tools like Google Analytics, can improve your approach elsewhere.

Read more about evolving your approach to attribution.


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