Customizing Megalytic: The AdWords Networks Widget

Published February 18, 2016
When reporting on online advertising performance, you want to show results on a granular level, in a way that makes sense to your clients. Unfortunately, marketers often spend too much time thinking and speaking like marketers, not like the clients who will be reading the reports they are putting together. When that happens, data gets grouped together in a way that that doesn’t accurately reflect your account’s performance, especially when you’re running ads across both search and display networks.
Megalytic’s AdWords Networks widget allows you to segment your data to report a clearer picture of performance to clients. In this article, we’ll delve into how to use this widget in your analytics reports, along with additional customization options that exist to allow you to segment by device or click type.


Megalytic Showing AdWords Conversions by Device


Why Segment Data by Network?

Breaking out performance by network allows you to illustrate to clients how search and display can show vastly different performance, instead of lumping the numbers together. For instance, a clickthrough rate below 1% is generally considered bad in search, while a clickthrough rate of 0.15% is perfectly normal for the display network. When you average these clickthrough rates together, the overall number doesn’t reflect that statistics from multiple networks have been combined, skewing the actual results.

While you can show performance by campaign, grouping data by network allows you to show a bigger picture breakdown of how Google search, display, and search networks perform across an entire account. This data demonstrates how Google search and search partners often provide varying results. If you find that search partners aren’t converting, or are driving a significantly higher cost per conversion than Google, you may want to turn off advertising on search partners.

Configuring the AdWords Networks Widget

When you first add the AdWords Networks widget, you’ll be asked to choose the AdWords account you’d like to connect. Now, you’ll see a table showing a default set of data for your account, broken out by Google search, display network, and search partners.


Megalytic Showing PPC Results by AdWords Network


Right away, we’re able to see vastly different stats shown among the three networks. Google search, by far, shows the highest CTR, at 3.21%. Search partners received a CTR of only 0.25%, incredibly low for search. Also, the display network received a CTR of 0.16%, on par for display but also very different from Google search. Also note that CPC cost the most, by far, on Google search.

Of course, these four metrics only tell part of the story. We’d ultimately like to measure how each network contributed to lead generation for this website by looking at conversion data.

To do so, we’ll edit the widget options by selecting the gear symbol in the upper left. Next, we’ll scroll down to the Columns dropdown, remove some of the existing columns, and replace them with conversion-related metrics. In this case, we’ll show Clicks, Cost, Converted Clicks, Click Conversion Rate, and Cost/Converted Click.


Choosing Conversion Metrics in Megalytic


Finally, we’ll click “Apply to report” to update it with our new metrics.


Megalytic Shows AdWords Conversions by Network


Here, we can see that despite the lower CTR, search partners actually drove a higher conversion rate at a lower cost per conversion than Google search. While this often isn’t the case, we can recommend keeping marketing on search partners active for this account. Also, the display network has driven the lowest cost per conversion at the highest conversion rate, due to remarketing being a significant part of this client’s display advertising spend.

While we note that Google search shows the highest cost per conversion and the lowest conversion rate, it does drive, by far, the highest volume of conversions. From this data, we can note that search is providing value, although there is opportunity to drive down the cost per conversion on Google search specifically.

Comparing Performance by Device

The AdWords Network Widget also allows you to segment performance by device, comparing metrics among computer (desktop/laptop), mobile (phone), and tablet. To switch, choose Device from the Dimension dropdown in the widget options.


Selecting the Dimension for AdWords Reporting in Megalytic


For this example, we’ll look at conversions by device, using a bar chart to easily compare volume. We’ll update the chart type at the top of the widget options and select Converted Clicks from the Metric dropdown. We’ll also use the date selector to choose a comparison date range to see how these statistics have changed from one month to the next.


Megalytic Chart Showing Conversions by Device


From this data, we can see that computers have driven the highest volume of conversions each month, with numbers remaining steady. Mobile has shown a breakout in performance, with seven conversions compared to three in the previous month. We can credit this to the client promoting a downloadable resource, instead of a product demo – an easier-to-consume item for those on mobile screens.

Of course, any time metrics show a dramatic increase or decrease, you should call out the reason using a Notes widget. Answer your clients’ questions before they even ask!

Segmenting by Click Type

Ad extensions are a type of ad format that show extra information about your business, “extending” your ads, and providing users with alternative click options beyond the ad headline. For instance, in the Target ad below, you can click on the store address to get directions in Google Maps, or you can click any of the four sitelinks below the main ad. If you searched from a mobile device, you could even click to call the store directly instead of going to the site.


AdWords Click Types


This widget also allows you to choose Click Type as a dimension, comparing click volume for ad headlines, sitelinks, phone calls, and map directions. You can also look at conversions that occurred from each of these.

To update your widget, select Click Type from the Dimension dropdown in the options. For this report, we’ll choose to analyze data from one particular campaign, using a Table Graph to easily compare the volume of multiple metrics.


Megalytic Customization of Click Type


We’ll also select Converted Clicks as a metric to look at alongside clicks to see how different click types contributed to leads. Once we’ve applied our settings, we can see the final widget breaking down click type statistics.


Megalytic Showing AdWords Clicks by Type


While headline clicks will naturally show the majority of volume, we see that sitelinks have attracted close to 200 clicks over the course of the campaign. In addition, we’ve driven a few clicks-to-call and requests for driving directions. This data can help to show clients how users are engaging beyond a simple website visit, if they’re choosing to call a business or seeking to drive there directly.


The AdWords Networks widget offers the benefit of segmenting advertising data in multiple ways. You can analyze performance by network, device, or click type, portraying information in charts from bar graphs to tables. This data can, in turn, provide deeper insight into how well your campaigns are contributing to your clients’ lead generation goals, while guiding decisions to reallocate spend by network or device.


When the client first came to you, you talked up the value of Google Analytics. You emphasized the importance of seeing where your traffic was coming from. You went on and on about how Google Analytics can show traffic sources to pinpoint whether people came from search, social media or a specific site referral, and how valuable this data was. You sold them on it, so much so that your client looked forward to receiving that first report, the magical day when they would finally understand where visitors were coming from.
But then the report came, and it looked like this:



It showed that 10% of your client’s traffic came from “(direct)/(none)”. What does this label mean? How do you explain Direct traffic to your client? Better yet, how do you explain “none”?
Let’s take a closer look at understanding Direct traffic in Google Analytics and how we can address it with clients.
Digital marketers spend a lot of time focused on PPC and SEO campaigns in order to drive desirable traffic to a website. The phrases we’re ranking for and bidding on get meticulous attention, so much so that we often forget about some of the other ways that visitors find us.

We put a tremendous amount of the effort we put into reviewing organic search data and PPC campaign performance in analytics. But how closely do we monitor referral reports?

If that’s not a channel you review regularly, you may be missing out on seeing traffic that is coming directly from links you’ve obtained around the web, local business listings, news mentions, and more. Many times, links are only considered as a means to an end, a metric that Google uses in determining how to rank sites in the SERPs (search engine results pages). But the fact is, many of a site’s links may be directly contributing to its traffic.

In this article, we’ll review how to look at referral reports in Google Analytics, and some of the many ways to use that data to better inform your web marketing decisions.


Remember how your mom told you not to stand too close to the television because it might hurt your eyes?

The same rules can apply to data. If you’re too close, you may miss the patterns and trends that are crucial to understanding your website’s performance. You can’t judge a site’s performance looking at data in the bubble of a single day, you must consider any day’s traffic compared to the days before and after.

Google Analytics makes it fairly easy to analyze trends over long periods of time. But it also allows you to stand right in front of that TV, to look at more granular levels of time, right down to the hour.
There’s a better way to get that close to the data, without burning your retinas. We’ll cover how to analyze traffic effectively in today’s post.