Starting today and over the next few weeks, Google AdWords will roll out a major reporting update to conversion tracking called Estimated Total Conversions. This feature provides estimates of conversions that take multiple devices to complete and adds this data to the conversion reporting we see today.
Following the launch of enhanced campaigns this year, search advertisers have combined mobile and desktops with the ability to further modify bids by mobile and other targeting factors. One gap in reporting and comprehension of the campaigns effectiveness has been the limited data on how consumers are navigating and converting via multiple device options.
What is a Cross-Device Conversion?
Consumers constant connectivity has enabled them to browse, shop, and interact with businesses on the go and from multiple devices.
A September 2013 Google study found that more than 90 percent of multi-device consumers move sequentially between several screens like mobile to desktop, or mobile to tablet to complete a transaction online. Google found that a high percentage of converters actually jumped from desktop to desktop too, presuming a work desktop to home desktop computer.
How Estimated Total Conversions Works
Google calculates cross-device conversions for a particular advertiser based on how their customers convert when they are logged in. They then use this as the basis for extrapolating out to the complete data set to form an estimate of what total conversions that cross devices might look like. This data is only used in aggregate and not personally identifiable.
Estimating conversions across devices (estimated cross-device conversions) is only the beginning and one conversion type Google intends to measure.
In the future Google plans to incorporate other conversion types such as phone calls and store visits where advertisers are hungry to gain new insights into how their advertising is working.