After spending thousands, if not millions per month on PPC advertising, your executive team will want to see how your ad efforts are paying off. Reporting on a regular cadence is an inevitable task for any business measuring ROI for their ad budgets. The key to creating effective PPC reports is making sure that your reports are informative, digestible, and appropriate for the audience at hand. In this blog post, we’ll go over the five elements of reports that fit all of those criteria.
1. The Results
Start with the highlights. It may seem like a smooth narrative to start with the nitty gritties and build to the big picture, but providing wide lens context from the start is going to make for a much stronger meeting. Your leaders and colleagues all have a lot to do, and while we PPC managers like to nerd out on the little details, beginning a report with every campaign change or specific conversion metric will not be relevant to each person to whom you are presenting. When showing the results, tie everything back to your business or marketing goals. Below are a few examples of PPC campaign results that refer to larger business goals:
Over the past quarter:
- We generated 150 marketing qualified leads with the same budget as last quarter
- 75 of these leads took a sales demo meeting
- 25 of these prospects converted into customers valued at $200,000 added revenue
In the month of July, we were tasked to sell-through our swimsuit inventory:
- We created new swimsuit campaigns with promotional discount pricing
- The campaign sold 75% of the available inventory, netting $200,000 in revenue
- We spent $25,000 of our total monthly budget on these campaigns
2. Key Metrics
While Google offers tons of really granular measuring tools for very specific numbers, there are a few key metrics that you should include in every PPC report. For recipients who are not used to looking at PPC reports, you can even translate the PPC terms into business terms. The five key metrics we recommend are:
Also, the numbers alone may not mean anything to executives who do not remember the benchmark metrics from the previous period. Therefore, showing the delta between the previous month and the current month will help provide context into whether campaigns are performing. Here’s an example of how you could show the delta of the key metrics in your report:
3. Trend Graphs
For many executives, their day consists of a series of meetings in which they see report after report after report from various departments. To expect someone with this schedule to be able to quickly track and understand your accomplishments over time without a little helping hand is not a reasonable ask. Including trend graphs helps them visualize performance and ask questions, especially if there are peaks or dips in traffic and conversions.
4. Explanations for Performance Changes
With each trend graph, you should include a brief explanation, outlining any campaign optimizations or changes you made to reflect major spikes or dips in performance. For example, you could say:
“In the above graph, we added negative keywords to our campaign to shape traffic more strategically. So, although the number of unique visitors went down, conversions remained the same.”
A sentence or two is all you want here. If you start including long paragraphs of text on your reports, then that’s a hint that the data isn’t speaking for itself and you need to re-think which metrics you’re including.
5. Granular Tables of Key Metrics
For the really detail-oriented readers, throw in some granular tables of key metrics. These can either be at the campaign level, usually explaining the top performing audiences, or at the creative level, to better understand what messaging is driving interest. Here is an example of what this section of your report could look like:
Follow these 5 tips and, at the very least, you’ll have the building blocks you need to have a smart, efficient conversation about your PPC performance. At the very most, your executives walk away feeling confident in your abilities, not only to run your campaigns, but to communicate your work to the greater team.
At AdStage, we know that having effective PPC reports can positively shape your relationship with investors, executives, and colleagues. That’s why we created Report. Automatically create effective PPC reports across Google, Bing, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.