Google had already announced that they planned to make changes as well as improvements to their AdWords impression share reporting feature that was released on October 1, 2012. The company has officially launched the update with several changes and improvements.
Impression Share or IS allows you to view the actual impressions against the projected ones in your campaign or ad group. Google has taken valuable feedback since October and made several improvements. This feature now boasts of “Hour of Day” segmentation that will provide hourly evaluations of your ad coverage. In addition, IS reports will feature specific search as well as display IS columns for much more detailed reports.
You will be able to utilize automatic rules using Impression Share metrics, apply filters, and view charts with this update. Calculation of IS data has also been improved to provide far more accurate reports. However, you will be able to view historical IS data reports only until October 1, 2012 once you apply the improved feature.
There are a few tricks that could help you use this updated feature in a better manner. You can begin by reviewing IS metrics regularly for your campaign and ad groups where additional volume is desired. You should check for values lower then 100% in the “Search Impression Share” or the “Display Impression Share” section. If you see low IS metric values then you have a chance to try for higher impressions, clicks as well as conversions.
You need to seek out “Lost IS (Budget)” column in the above 2 sections to locate low IS metrics in good campaigns or ad groups so as to determine how to improve them. You will be able to identify ads that failed to appear because you ran out of your daily budget. You merely need to increase your daily budget to ensure that you get more conversions at the same ROI.
After you solve the Lost IS (Budget) problem then you need to view the “Lost IS (Rank)” column to identify missed impressions because of low ranks. You can then raise your bids or improve your Quality Score to solve your ranking problem. You will need to keep an eagle eye on performance metrics such as cost per acquisition or CPA, profit, and return on ad spend if you raise your bids.
Google will anyway phase out the old IS columns by February 2013 as they have now introduced the new columns. You need to ensure that all old reports based on the old columns are updated to new columns. The Google AdWords interface will guide you on how to replace the old IS columns with new ones once you try to view a report.
You can always use AdWords support and AdWords Community in case you need help with the improved AdWords Impression Share reports feature from Google.