All digital campaigns must consist of two important components for success: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM).

We’ve already shown you how to put together a comprehensive SEO plan, and now it’s time to turn our attention to optimizing your SEM (search engine marketing) campaign through Google AdWords. Not only is it important to pick the right keywords, it’s equally important to monitor your expenses and measure your ROI (return on investment). The best way to keep track is to setup Custom Reports in Google Analytics

In this article, we’ll be sharing my top five favorite Custom Reports for monitoring AdWords campaigns


Before starting, you will need to link your Google AdWords account with Analytics and configure the tagged destination URLs of AdWords. You can do both by following the guides provided by Google:


Once you’ve completed these steps, you are free to import Custom Reports and browse through your AdWords analytics data.


1. Daily Dashboard

Each day, when you log into your Analytics Dashboard, you’ll want a quick overview of how well your AdWords campaign is performing. You’ll need to see users’ behavior, what traffic is originating from AdWords, Conversions, Visits, main keywords costs and so on. The first Custom Report will provide the necessary overview and allow you to take necessary actions if any behaviour seems unusual or has a low conversion rate.


2. Campaign Conversions and Cost

The next statistic you’ll want at your fingertips is the cost of each conversion: per campaign, per group ads, and per keywords. This is particularly useful if you need an overall picture of your investment and ROI in AdWords. You can use this report when you are optimizing your campaigns.


3. Visits and Hours

While the first two reports give you a good overview of your campaigns’ performance and conversion rate, you might need to drill a little deeper and find out the performance on particular days or at specific points in time. You might be looking to optimize your campaign and invest more resources into days when your campaign is performing well or cut campaigns at times when they aren’t working.

4. Conversions Per City

If your campaign is global in nature, you will need to monitor its performance on a more granular level. This report provides some basic metrics which shows you the relative performance for each city or region you are running campaigns in. By clicking on each city, you will see the campaigns, ad groups, and keywords that are driving traffic to your website, and the most important: the conversions.

5. Mobile Devices

My favorite custom report is for Mobile Devices, because it lets me easily monitor mobile traffic to my website (by device brand, browser, etc.). This report will help you determine whether it’s worth investing more resources into building a mobile optimized website or a more targetted AdWords campaign.


Create your Own

There you have it. Five useful Custom Reports to monitor your ad campaigns. If you want to create your own reports with other types of metrics, you can do so by selecting the “Customization” tab and then “New Custom Report”:

Next,  you must choose the metrics and dimensions that you want to monitor. There are three primary types of reports you can choose:

  • Explorer: with a chart by days, months, etc.
  • Table: organized by your selected mentrics
  • Map: if you want a geographic visualization


What about you? What other custom reports have you used?

The following two tabs change content below.
Obed Medina

Obed Medina

Obed, currently working as a Digital Marketing Executive in Mexico, develops strategies for PPC advertising, content marketing, SEO, and email marketing. He is a lover of fine arts, film. and photography.
Obed Medina

Latest posts by Obed Medina (see all)