Like any marketing strategy or tactic, measurement of ROI (return on investment) is integral to determining success. Any company investing resources into paid search campaigns certainly wants to make sure their investment is worthwhile.
Although paid search campaigns are among the most measurable tools in marketing, many still scratch their heads when it comes time to measure their ROI.
Before you sit down with a calculator, spreadsheet, and paid search campaigns, trying to figure out how much SEM has yielded for you, you must first keep in mind what your objectives are.
For the majority investing in paid search, the main objective is lead generation/sales, but for others it is to improve brand awareness & perception. You must be clear on what your goals are prior to measuring ROI.
Similarly, you must figure out what constitutes a “conversion”. Is it simply when a user clicks on your ad? Or is it when they fill out a contact form, subscribe to a newsletter, or actually follow through with an online transaction?
The definition of a conversion can vary by industry, and also by department (marketing vs. sales vs. finance).
Once you’ve determined you goals and definition of a conversion, figure out the best software for you in terms of tracking your conversions and goals. There are plenty of conversion tracking tools in Google AdWords, or whichever paid search platform you are using. It is just a matter of finding one that gives you all of the data that you need.
To review, optimal ROI measurement requires clear definition of your goals and conversions, proper tracking software, and diligent monitoring.