Google Releases “Share of Voice” Impression Metrics

    July 10, 2007

Search engine giant Google has released another enhancement to its AdWords advertising platform which will allow advertisers to get a better understanding of their campaigns’ performance. The new impression metrics are akin to traditional advertising’s "Share of Voice" measurements.
As detailed in the Inside AdWords blog, "Share of voice" is a metric often used in the advertising industry to represent the relative portion of ad inventory available to a single advertiser within a defined market over a specified time period.

So if you’re a Google AdWords advertiser, the Impression Metrics let you know how many times your ads were displayed relative to the total number of ad views across the Google network based on your keywords and campaign settings.

The Impression Share metrics are presented in 3 columns in the campaign or account level performance reports. The 3 measures as described in the Inside AdWords blog are:

Impression Share (IS): The percentage of times your ads were shown out of the total available impressions in the market you were targeting. This metric is available at the campaign and account level for search.

Lost IS (Rank): The percentage of impressions lost due to low Ad Rank (cost-per-click bid x Quality Score).

Lost IS (Budget): The percentage of impressions lost due to budget constraints.

While having your ads displayed at every opportunity might not be your primary goal, the new metrics provide valuable insights into market trends and also give a better guide to lost opportunities due to quality scoring and budgets issues.

Ironically, it was only the other day that I was discussing the shortcomings of AdWords reporting on market shifts and budget performance with our own paid search expert. These new impression metrics will give us a more accurate guide on which factor is driving the performance of campaigns and accordingly react quicker to changes.

So if you manage your own Google AdWords campaigns, I recommend getting better acquainted with these new metrics, as they will certainly provide you with a much deeper understanding of changes in your campaign performance.

To find out how to include the new metrics in your reports, visit the Google AdWords help center.