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Transcript: How to Use Linear Attribution in Google Ads
In this video, we’re going to explore the linear attribution model in Google ads. Now of course attribution models in Google ads allow you to allocate credits to different touchpoints in your campaign leading to conversion. In this video specifically, we’re exploring the linear attribution model. We’re going to take a look at what it is how it works. Have a look at an example of how it works and at the end, we’re going to implement their strategy on our campaigns. We’re going to learn all about the linear attribution model coming up.
Hey guys, Darren Taylor of thebigmarketer.com. My job is to make you a PPC expert. Now, if you’re new to the channel I’m a specialist in PPC. I’m a trainer and speaker. I train people into PPC experts. If that sounds of interest to you, you should consider subscribing to the channel. In this video, we’re exploring the linear attribution model in Google ads. I’ve mentioned at the beginning of the video, an attribution model in Google ads allows you to allocate credit to different touchpoints leading to a user conversion. Typically, on Google ads, you have some conversions that take one touchpoint.
Within one click, a use a converts but then there’ll be many other conversions in your accounts where people have clicked your ads more than once. What we’re doing with an attribution model is we’re allocating credit for that conversion based on the clicks leading up to the conversion. Specifically, with the linear model, let’s take a look at how it works but before I explain that don’t forget this key message about attribution which is really important. Attribution and choosing an attribution model for your accounts is all about maximizing your ROI.
What can the visibility of different touchpoints leading to conversion tell you and specifically how can you invest differently in your campaign based on those touchpoints? That is the purpose of attribution and for specifically linear attribution what you’re doing is you’re taking all of your touchpoints to use the clicks for your ads on the way to conversion and giving them an equal share of the conversion. If I have a campaign that has four clicks before somebody clicks, if a user clicks my ads four times, doesn’t matter how many keywords they’ve clicked I’m going to allocate equal share to all of those areas.
What it wants to do is share an example with you to show you how a conversion will break down using a specific example with the linear attribution model. Let’s take a look at an example using a car insurance business. Now, with the car insurance business here’s an example of some typical keywords you’d find within a campaign. Now, imagine each of these keywords touchpoint one, two, three, and four are the different touchpoints a user has clicked on the way to the fourth touchpoint which is where they converted. It took them four clicks to convert into a customer.
How does this break down with a linear conversion model taking into consideration the four touchpoints leading to that conversion? As I mentioned, it splits them equally. Across each of those four touchpoints, each of them will be allocated a quarter of that one conversion meaning that each one has a conversion value of naught 0.25. One is a whole conversion and if you split that conversion into four, you break it down into decimal places. That means each of these touchpoints from a keyword point of view will be allocated naught 0.25 of that conversion.
Now, I can already hear you saying you can’t have half a conversion or quarter of a conversion. With attribution you can if you’re not using a last-click model where your attributing all credits for the conversion to the very last touchpoint your customer used, then you’re going to see decimal points in your campaigns. That’s not something to be scared of. It’s something to be embraced because previously with the last click model what you would have seen is that people are converting on that last click, you’ll see the keyword that led to that conversion.
However, with a linear model, you will see the clicks leading up to that point and it could highlight some opportunities for you. When you look at your campaign and you review the performance and look at the attribution model, you might see some keywords in there generating conversions. If you’re switching from a last-click over to a linear that never generated any conversion data before because that tells you that the keyword that’s generating that new conversion is something that you weren’t measuring previously with a last-click model.
The new keywords that are generating those conversions tell you that early on in the touchpoint of the user journey that keyword is more of interest to the user before converting. It’s a case of understanding if you want to invest more into that keyword, get more visibility, and then pull people into that cycle of buying on your websites after a number of touchpoints. This conversion attribution model allows you to allocate budget more effectively but the question is, what business should use a linear attribution model when you know there are a ton of models out there you could potentially use to get away from last-click?
Typically a linear conversion attribution model is a good place to start. If you’re moving away from a last-click model with the reason being it’s a democratic way of doing things. It splits things very evenly. It gives you good visibility on all of your touchpoints initially. Instead of some of the more weighted models based on where you are and how long it’s taken, this model gives you some even data and it’s a good starting point to move away from last-click. It should be your first port of call usually but particularly for those with shorter buying cycles as well. If you have a long buying cycles maybe you’re in B2B or selling a product that’s huge massively expensive that requires a lot of touchpoints.
You might prefer a time decay based model instead. This model being linear it splits the conversion evenly. You shouldn’t have too many touchpoints when you’re looking at this model. If you have a longer conversion cycle and have a lot more touchpoints in your campaign to a major purchase, it could be worthwhile going with a different model. Maybe as I mentioned, the time decay model. Don’t forget the benefit of using a different conversion attribution model compared to last-click using an alternative to last-click means that you get the benefits of smart bidding getting better data as well.
Of course with smart bidding, Google is adjusting your bids based on conversion points. Now, if you feed in last-click conversions, Google haven’t got previous click data to work with to push towards that final conversion point so they can’t adjust your bids effectively. If Google knows a particular keyword doesn’t generate the final sale but it’s a good touchpoint on the route to that final sale.
As an indicator, Google can use that data to adjust your bids as well. It’s really good if you’re running a smart bidding campaign. If you’re running a smart bidding campaign on last-click, it might be worth migrating over to a different model, and linear is a good place to start. Now you know how the linear attribution model works. Let’s take a look at how to add it specifically into your Google ads campaign and set that up as a conversion.
I’m in a test Google ads account now and all I’m going to do is change a conversion in my campaigns to a linear conversion model. Head over to tools and settings and then head into conversion. Now, if you created conversions previously, which I’d imagine most of you have, you’ll see your list of conversions in here. In order for you to change your attribution model for your conversions, all you need to do is click on the conversion which is here. Once you’re in, you need to edit the settings of your conversion. As you can see, it tells you exactly all the details around the conversion in terms of the attribution model, the category, the conversion name all the details are editable in here.
Just click on edit settings and when you’re in edit settings the last option right at the end is attribution model. Click the dropdown menu and then when you click the dropdown underneath here, you’ll see all the attribution models available in Google ads. As we mentioned, we’re going to select the linear attribution model. More often than not, a lot of people with conversions will have it set up as last-click as a default but if you move it over to a different attribution model you just need to click in here. In this instance, I’m selecting linear and then hit save when you’re done and that will update the conversion and then click done.
It’s as easy as that. You have now changed your attribution model for your conversion from a last-click to a linear attribution model. That’s it guys, thank you very much for watching. If you liked the video, please, leave a like below and let me know in the comments. If you’re migrating away from a last-click attribution model, it’s definitely advisable. Let me know in the comments what attribution model you set your conversions up with. I replied to pretty much every single comment I get so hit me up down below. More important than that, like this video if you like it. Don’t forget to subscribe and check out the other content across my channel. I’ll see you guys on my next video.