Setting up Google Ads Conversion Tracking

setting up google ads conversion trackingWhen you advertise on Google one of the most important things is setting up Google ads conversion tracking. By having your tracking set up correctly you can see how all areas of your account are working at a granular level. This means that you can see exactly what is, and isn’t working in your account.

One of the best things about conversion tracking in Google ads is the level of detail you can get from it.

Because Google have so much data available to advertisers you are able to see the exact settings that cause a conversion.

By having your tracking set up properly, you will be able to see where a conversion happened at many different levels in your account. For example:

  • The Campaign
  • Ad group
  • Keyword (including the exact search terms)
  • The device
  • Time of day, day of week
  • The network they came from (search, search partners, display)
  • The persons location
  • Phone call details, including area code and duration of the call

You can also get partial data on people logged into Google such as:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Household income

This is the reason setting up Google ads conversion tracking is so important. By having so much visibility of what works, you can make educated decisions when optimising your account.

Types of conversion tracking available in Google

When setting up Google ads conversion tracking you have several options to select from. Google do there best to make it easy for you to track any event that might be important to your business. This includes:

  • Page views (perfect for tracking leads)
  • Sales, including revenue
  • Click events
  • Phone calls generated on your website
  • Phone calls directly from ads
  • App installs and in app activity
  • Import from Google Analytics
  • Upload from file or via the API

As you can see, this verity of options means you can track pretty much any event that is important to your business.

How to Set up Google ads Conversion Tracking

To get started setting up your conversion tracking, you need to decide what actions are important to your business. For example, if your businesses main goal is generating leads, then you may want to track several different things. This could include all phone call that are generated by Google ads. It would probably also include any inquiries made via your website.

On the other hand, if you own an eCommerce business, you may only be interested in tracking actual sales and revenue.

Once you have decided what you want to track you need to start set things up in your Google ads accounts. To add a conversion, click on the tool’s icon in the top right of your Google ads interface. Once you click tools, a drop down will appear with a variety of options. Select conversions.


If this the first conversion you have ever set up, you will be greeted with a page that says something like set up your first conversion. If this is not your first attempt at setting up Google ads conversion tracking, you will be sent to your conversion actions page. Here you will need to click the blue plus symbol to add a new conversion.

On the next screen you will see all your options for setting up Google ads conversion tracking. Based on the activity that you want to track you will need to select one of the following 4 options.

select google ads call tracking

Setting up website tracking

In this example we will be setting up Google ads conversion tracking for website conversions. For any type of website tracking, including leads and sales you will want to choose the first option.

Once you have selected the website option, you will be taken to a page where you will create your conversion action.

Firstly, you need to give your new conversion a name and choose a category. You should name your conversion something relevant so if you are tracking a form submit, then call the conversion something like “form submit”. The category you choose should also be relevant, so in this instance of a form submit you would probably want to choose lead as the category. Other options include:

  • Sale/Purchase
  • Sign-up
  • View of key page
  • Other

Assigning a value

In the next section you are asked to assign a value. Here you have three options which can be seen below.

setting up google ads conversions value

If you are generating leads or just selling one product with a fixed price, then you can select the first option. Also, if you aren’t interested in tracking the value, you can select the last option and not assign a value at all.

Personally, I would always like to add a value. Even for a lead you should be able to work out, on average what a lead is worth to you. The only time I would not assign a value is if conversions were being imported based on sales after a lead. In this instance, not using a value would probably be your best option.

The middle option is to use different values for each conversion. This will be relevant if you are selling multiple products with different price points. This option will require you to edit the conversion tag to pass back transaction specific values. The difficulty of setting this up will depend on the website platform you are using (for example: WordPress, magento, shopify, etc.) This may be something you need help with from your developer.

How many conversions do you want to count?

The next section will ask you how many conversions you want to count per interaction. You have two options:

  1. Every
  2. One

Essentially this means how many conversions do you want to track per visitor. This again will depend on your business and what you are tracking.

For leads you will probably want to select one. Regardless of how many leads someone submits they are still the same lead, so it usually doesn’t make sense to track them more than once.

For ecommerce on the other hand you are far more likely to want to track every conversion. For example, if somebody buys an item, then returns shortly and buys another item, it would be beneficial to track all conversions and revenue generated.

Additional Options

At the bottom of the conversion action page you have 4 more options which can be seen below:

Conversion window

This is telling Google how long you would like to track a conversion after a click. The default is 30, but this can be increased all the way up to 90 days. This is entirely up to you, you may want to increase the duration if you have a product with a longer sales cycle

View through conversions

A view through conversion, is a conversion that occurs via another channel (not Google ads) after someone has seen your ad on the display network. This is someone who saw your ad but didn’t click, so it is based on an impression. This feature can be useful if you are running a brand campaign via the display network. Again, this is entirely up to you, it won’t affect normal conversions and will be tracked separately. If in doubt just leave it on the default setting.

Include in conversions

This is usually going to be yes; the exception would be if it was a smaller conversion point that you didn’t want to include in your main conversion column. By unchecking and selecting no, you would only see these conversions under “All conversions”.

An example of where this might be applicable is an eCommerce campaign. Your main goal with this campaign will be to track sales and the revenue generated. However, you might also want to track people using your contact form, but you don’t want this this skew the sales data, unchecking “include in conversions”, for your contact form conversion, would stop it being added to the conversion column with your sales.

Attribution model

This is the final option and can be left as last click, attribution models are relatively new and is more of an advanced setting to assign conversions to different clicks during the entire conversion cycle. This is a topic that would require a whole article to explain. Last click has been the default for many years and is perfectly suitable for the majority of businesses.

Getting Your Conversion Tracking Codes

Once you have completed all the fields, click continue and select how you would like to install your code. You have the option to do it yourself, email the details to your developer, or add via Google tag manager.

For this example, we will select to add the conversion codes yourself. Next you will be given the option to add your Global site tag. This is a piece of code that needs adding to every page of your website. Once it is added you will not need to repeat this process for new conversions, it will only need adding once.

The global site tag should be added between the <head></head> tags of every page of your website.

Below this you find a second piece of code, known as your event snippet. This is how you will track the conversion and the snippet needs adding to the page where a conversion takes place. For the example of a lead this would be somewhere like your thank you page.

event snippet

You also have the option to trigger a conversion on a click instead of a page load. This option will require you to call “gtag_report_conversion” when someone clicks a link or button, so you may need some help from your developer to implement this option.

Whether you are tracking page views or clicks the event snippet will need adding in the same place. This is between the <head></head> tags directly below your global site tag.

Once you have these two pieces of code added you will be fully set up and tracking your desired event. You can repeat this process for as many different website tracking events as you like.

Other Ways Of Setting up Google Ads Conversion Tracking

Up to now we have only discussed website tracking, however there are still 3 other types of tracking that can be added.

Phone calls

We have created a whole article dedicated to phone call conversions and you can read it here. The article covers how to set up on site call tracking, as well as call extensions, so you can track calls directly from ads.


Here at CPS media we specialise in Lead generation and we don’t have much experience working with app campaigns for this reason we recommend you check out this useful article by the guys over at Google

Imported conversions

This option covers a variety of different ways of importing conversions, we will be writing a new article in the next couple of days that will cover this in more detail. The article will look specifically at importing conversions from Analytics and uploading conversions via a document using click ID’s.

I hope you have found this article on setting up Google ads Conversion tracking useful. If you have any questions, please ask them in the comments below.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *