16 Aug

Conversion Tracking with AdWords Conversion Code

With this popular conversion tracking method you take a java script “conversion code” that’s found in your AdWords account and paste it into the html code for your conversion web pages. These pages might be the order confirmation page of an ecommerce site, or the Thank You page that appears after a visitor completes a lead generation form.

Here’s an example of the AdWords conversion code:

AdWords Conversion Code Sample.

Installing the AdWords Code… Easy For Techies, Hard for many….

The instructions to place the code sound simple: “Copy the tag box and paste it between the body tags <body></body> on the page you would like to track”. If you understand what a <body> tag is, it’s probably easy for you to load the code.  If you don’t, know what a body tag is, have someone who does install the code on your conversion page.  (A <body> tag is part of the your website’s HTML code)

The benefits of Using AdWords Conversion Code

AdWords tracks every visit to the page with the embedded Java script and reports it as conversions that appear in your reports. It appears to be very simple.

Beware the pitfalls of Misplacing the Code

The AdWords Conversion code only goes on the web page where you know a conversion has happened; the “thank page” or order confirmation page.

I’ve seen several businesses misplace the code on their website.  Here are a couple of horror stories that caused huge over spending on AdWords advertising:

One client had embedded the code on their landing page, so AdWords counted every click to that landing page as a conversion, even if the visitor never did anything on that page to truly “convert”.

Another client placed the code on a form page instead of the associated thank you page. So AdWords tracked visits to the form page, instead of form completions (leads).

As a result of misplacing the AdWords code, both companies had a false and inflated belief their AdWords were performing extraordinarily well. So they couldn’t optimize their advertising spending.

The Circumstance When I Deploy the AdWords Conversion Data

As a general rule, I prefer to import Google Analytics goals into Google AdWords.  It’s easier to compare Adwords performance to Social Media, Organic Search (SEO), Direct Traffic, Email, etc…. more on that later.

Ecommerce conversion tracking is the exception simply because I have not seen a Google Analytics Enhanced Ecommerce tracking that is trustworthy.  Ecommerce is very complex and with so many different platforms out there (Shopify, Magento, Woo Commerce (WordPress), even Wix) I just haven’t seen one work.

The most common challenge with Enhanced Ecommerce has been transactions being attributed to “Direct” traffic instead of AdWords.  Or worse, the transactions do not even show up.

I have started suggesting my customers avoid the complexities of Google’s Enhanced Ecommerce and just install the AdWords Conversion code on their conversion page.

 

This article is an excerpt from a previous post “Different Ways to Track AdWords Conversions“.

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