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Top 10 Google Ads Metrics to Measure PPC Performance

Want to make sure that your PPC campaigns are running smoothly and that you are not spending more than you should? In this article, we are going to focus on Google Ads and the metrics you should pay special attention to when running a campaign on this platform. 

When you first set up your campaigns in Google Ads, you will see many metrics. In the beginning, it might be difficult to decide which of them deserve the most attention, and which are secondary and are not so indicative. So, to help you sort it out, we’ve selected the top 10 most important Google Ads key metrics to track and monitor at all times. Let’s get started.

Understanding Google Ads Metrics

Google Ads metrics are specific indicators and data points that provide insights about the performance and effectiveness of your Google Ads campaigns. These metrics help you assess the success of your advertising efforts, make informed decisions, and optimize your campaigns for better results. 

Tracking Google Ads metrics is extremely important, and here are a few reasons why you should start tracking Google Ads metrics if you aren’t already: 

  • Performance evaluation: Metrics provide insights into the performance of your ads, campaigns, and keywords. By tracking metrics such as impressions, clicks, CTR, and conversion rate, you can evaluate the effectiveness of your advertising efforts.
  • Optimization opportunities: Metrics reveal which aspects of your campaigns are working well and which ones need your attention. For instance, if you have a low CTR, you can modify your ad copy or adjust your targeting to increase engagement. 
  • Budget management: This is definitely an important reason to monitor these metrics. Tracking metrics like cost, CPA, and ROAS allows you to manage your advertising budget effectively. You can assess the cost-effectiveness of your campaigns and allocate your budget to the most profitable strategies.
  • Benchmarking and competition analysis: Metrics allow you to compare your performance with industry benchmarks and analyze how your campaigns stack up against your competitors.

There are different ways in which you can track Google Ads metrics to make sure you achieve your goals. For example, you can monitor them directly in Google Ads, which is convenient but has certain limitations. Another option is to create custom reports or build comprehensive cross-channel dashboards.

Let’s take a look at a couple of examples that illustrate how you can better monitor, analyze and understand your Google Ads data.

Example 1 – a cross-channel Ad Dashboard

To give you a better idea of what analyzing your metrics might look like, here’s an example of a self-updating Ad Dashboard where you can see PPC metrics from 3 channels at once: 

1. Cross channel dashboard

This visualization was created by our data analytics team. The dashboard is built in Looker Studio with the help of – a popular data analytics and automation platform. Here, is used to collect data from Google Ads, LinkedIn Ads, and Facebook Ads automatically on a schedule. 

If you want to create an auto-updating dashboard like the one above, you can jump directly to the How to visualize Google Ads metrics section. Alternatively, you can request help and let our experts do it for you. 

Example 2 – a FREE template for Google Ads Dashboard

If you need a dashboard that only displays Google Ads data, then you can use our automated Google Ads dashboard template for Looker Studio. It will save you a lot of time and effort as it already features the most important metrics presented in a concise visual form. You will only need to connect your Google Ads account to have a ready-to-use professional Google Ads dashboard. Apart from that, you will need to have a Looker Studio account and also sign up for (free trial available, no card required). This dashboard will be self-updating as well. If you are familiar with Looker Studio and want to customize some blocks, you can tweak this template and easily adjust it to your needs.

This Google Ads dashboard template is free. Grab it to visualize your ad data quickly and easily.

Click the ‘Read me’ tab to learn how to use this template.

Ready to discover the most important Google Ads metrics you should include in your reports and dashboards? Let’s dig in!

There are many useful metrics that you can track in Google Ads. However, let’s take a look at the core metrics that you should focus on, no matter the type of campaign you need to set up.

1. Click-Through Rate (CTR)

The click-through rate (CTR) displays the proportion of impressions to clicks that your ads received. You may figure it out by multiplying by 100 after dividing the clicks by impressions.

The CTR formula is as follows:

CTR = (Clicks / Impressions) * 100

For your Google advertising campaigns, CTR is a crucial measure to monitor as it shows the efficacy and relevancy of your advertising. A higher CTR can demonstrate how appealing your advertisements are to users, luring them to your target page.

2. Cost Per Click (CPC)

Cost Per Click (CPC) displays how much you pay when a user clicks on your advertisement. In the well-known pay-per-click (PPC) advertising model, marketers are only charged when a user clicks on their advertisements.

The quantity of your bid, the quality of your ads, and the level of competition for the keywords you’re targeting all affect your CPC. Advertisers participate in an auction through Google Ads and put bids for ad positions. The winning advertiser pays the amount of the second-highest bid and receives the highest bid and ad quality.

3. Conversion Rate

This indicator reveals the number of visitors who took action after viewing your website via your advertisement. The specific action, such as making a purchase, completing a form, subscribing to a newsletter, or downloading a document, depends on your company goals.

This metric shows how well your campaigns perform in regard to conversions.

The conversion rate can be calculated by dividing the total number of conversions by the total number of ad clicks and multiplying by 100.

The formula for figuring out the conversion rate is as follows: 

Conversion Rate = (Conversions / Clicks) * 100

4. Impressions

When checking “Impressions” in Google Ads you will see the number of times your ads were displayed to users on the Google network. This includes the search results page and the display network. Each time your ad appears on a person’s screen, it counts as one impression, even if that user doesn’t interact with the ad in any way. Also, you can receive multiple impressions from one user if they see that ad multiple times. 

Impressions indicate the visibility and reach of your ad campaigns. Higher impression numbers show that your ads reach a larger audience. However, take into account that impressions alone do not guarantee user engagement or conversions. They are just the starting point for evaluating the performance and effectiveness of your campaigns.

5. Cost Per Acquisition (CPA)

Cost Per Acquisition (CPA) shows how much it costs to acquire one conversion from your campaigns. It is calculated by dividing the total cost you paid on your ads by the number of conversions the campaign generated.

Here’s the formula:

CPA = Total Cost / Conversions

Tracking this metric helps you understand how much you’re spending to convince a user to take a purchase, fill out a form, or sign-up for a newsletter, depending on your desired goal.

6. Quality Score

Quality Score is used to measure the quality and relevance of your ads, keywords, and landing pages. It determines your ad rank and the cost per click (CPC) you pay.

Google uses this score to see how well your ads align with the search queries of users and their overall user experience. It takes into consideration various factors, including the CTR, ad relevance, landing page experience, and historical performance. The Quality Score ranges from 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest score.

7. Ad Rank

Ad Rank determines the position of your ads on SERP or the display network. It is calculated based on several factors, including your bid, ad quality, and the expected impact of ad extensions and other ad formats. Ad Rank is used with the user’s search query to determine which ads are shown and the order they are shown in.

Unfortunately, you won’t be able to check Ad Rank in Google Ads as the platform doesn’t show this number. However, there is a way to calculate your approximate Ad Rank to make sure you are on track:

The formula for Ad Rank in Google Ads is:

Ad Rank = Bid x Quality Score

Please note that this is not an official formula (Google doesn’t disclose it), but it still can be useful and help you see the approximate value. 

When you calculate the Ad Rank, you should also look at the conversion rate. While Google doesn’t look at conversion metrics to make up your Ad Rank, the conversion metric shows you how well your campaigns are performing. 

8. Return on Advertising Spend (ROAS)

Return on Advertising Spend (ROAS) is a metric that measures how effective your ads campaign is. It evaluates the revenue generated compared to the amount of money spent on advertising. It can help you see the profitability of your marketing investments.

A higher ROAS indicates a more successful campaign, as it signifies that the revenue generated from the ads outweighs the advertising costs.

The formula for calculating ROAS is:

ROAS = (Revenue Generated from Ads / Advertising Spend) * 100

9. Search Impression Share

Search Impression Share is a metric that shows how many impressions your ads receive compared to the total number of impressions your ads could’ve received in a specific target market or location.

Search Impression Share is calculated by dividing the number of impressions your ads received by the estimated number of impressions your ads were eligible to receive, and then multiplying by 100.

You can use the following formula to calculate Search Impression Share: 

Search Impression Share = (Impressions Received / Impressions Eligible) * 100

10. Cost

Cost shows how much you spent on your campaigns during a specific period of time. It can be calculated by multiplying the number of clicks or impressions with how much each of them costs and then summing them up.

Also, if you are running display or video campaigns, you should keep an eye on the Cost per thousand impressions (also referred to as CPM). When you run these campaigns, you may be charged based on the number of impressions your ads receive. In this case, the cost is calculated per thousand impressions, rather than per click.

Now that you know what Google Ads metrics you should track closely, let’s go through some tips to help you deal with them efficiently. 

Tips and tricks for working with Google Ads Key Metrics

Want to better monitor your metrics in Google Ads? We’ve prepared a few tips and tricks that will help you. 

Set up clear goals

Before you start tracking key metrics, you need to define your goals. Determine what you want to achieve with your campaigns and then choose the metrics that best align with those goals. For example, if you are setting up a campaign to promote your event, you will need to pay closer attention to the conversion rate than to impressions. 

Visualize data in dashboards 

Google Ads doesn’t offer you much customization for presenting and analyzing your data. At the same time, a dashboard created outside of Google Ads will ensure full flexibility and endless customization. You can choose any graphical elements you wish, from line or bar charts to pivot tables and more. You can select any metrics in any combination, and even bring together data from multiple ad channels. Native Google Ads functionality cannot offer you that.

On a higher level, creating dashboards offers several advantages for campaign management and decision-making. Dashboards and graphs provide a clear and concise presentation of data, making it easier to interpret and understand complex metrics. Visualizing data through dashboards enables you to gain valuable insights that might not be apparent from raw numbers alone. 

Look at trends

Looking at trends in Google Ads metrics provides valuable insights beyond simple metrics by offering a more comprehensive view of your campaign performance. Trends provide context by showcasing how your metrics change over time. Simple metrics might give you a snapshot of your current performance, but trends help you understand if your metrics are improving, declining, or staying stable. 

Also, by looking at trends, you can identify patterns and spot any anomalies. Trends can help in forecasting future performance based on historical patterns, aiding budget planning and goal setting.

Compare data to industry benchmarks

Industry benchmarks provide a reference point to evaluate your campaign’s performance against the broader market. By comparing your metrics to industry averages or benchmarks, you can gauge how well your campaigns are performing relative to your competitors or industry standards.

Industry benchmarks serve as a guide for setting realistic and achievable goals. Also, these benchmarks help identify areas where your campaign excels or falls behind compared to industry leaders.

Now, let’s see how you can leverage automation and data visualization to use your Google Ads data to the fullest.

How to visualize Google Ads Metrics in self-updating dashboards

Checking the performance of your campaigns directly in Google Ads can be a bit confusing, especially if you have a lot of campaigns. You can track these metrics in various ways, from using the native stats to creating a report in a spreadsheet, building a graph, or even visualizing your data in a cross-channel dashboard. In this section, we’ll see how to build a comprehensive dashboard powered by automation.

Step1. Automate data collection for your live dashboard

If you want to make sure that the data you use for reports and dashboards is always fresh and correct, we recommend automating your data flows. This way, your data can be collected automatically on a schedule from all your ad and marketing apps and transferred to one place, such as Looker Studio. As we’ve already mentioned, if you only need Google Ads data, you can use our Google Ads dashboard template. 

A dashboard powered by such automation allows you to monitor your ad metrics in near real-time – so, basically, you will have your ad report always ready for analysis or for sharing with the stakeholders. And all this – without any manual effort. To show you how you can export data from Google Ads automatically and create insightful dashboards, we will use is a powerful data automation and analytics platform. It allows you to extract data from various ad sources like Google Ads, Google Analytics 4, LinkedIn Ads, YouTube Ads, and 70+ other business apps. allows you to blend data from multiple apps, transform it in various ways, calculate custom metrics, and then load your information into Looker Studio with direct automated integration. 

If you want to visualize your data in Power BI or Tableau, can help with this as well – in this case, you will need to load your data into a spreadsheet or database with (into Excel, Google Sheets, or BigQuery), and then connect it to the data viz tool of your choice. 

Now, let’s see how to create an automated dashboard with

First, sign up for and add your first importer.  Then, you will need to select the apps to connect – in our case, Google Ads and Google Looker Studio. 

Once you connect your Google Ads account, you can select what data you want to import to Looker Studio. 

6. Google Ads to Looker Studio step2

Then, you will need to follow the instructions in the wizard to connect your Looker Studio account. The flow is quite simple and doesn’t require any tech knowledge.

Then, you can schedule your exports in Specify the preferred update interval, days of the week, and time preferences for your automatic data refresh. 

7. Google Ads to Looker Studio step3

Then, run the importer by clicking Save and Run. After exporting the data you can start working on your report in Looker Studio.

As we’ve already mentioned, you can also transfer your data to Tableau or PowerBI. In this case, you will need to connect your data source to Google Sheets or BigQuery and then connect the latter to the data viz tool of your choice.

Just as your data can be imported to your data viz tool automatically, it can be visualized automatically too.

For example, you can use this Google Ads dashboard template prepared by our team.

This template is fully pre-configured. If you use it with, you will only need to connect your Google Ads and Looker Studio accounts – that’s it! All the settings are already there, so the dashboard will automatically pull relevant data and visualize it in the way you can see below. As a result, you will get the same dashboard as shown below, but with your own data. will keep refreshing your data in the dashboard automatically, so this dashboard will be always up-to-date without any manual effort.

If you are looking for an option to create full PPC reports where you can showcase the performance of your campaigns on various channels (Google Ads, Facebook Ads, LinkedIn Ads, etc), then you can export data from various sources into Looker Studio with 

After selecting the first source (Google Ads) and the destination (Looker Studio), you can add other sources, such as Facebook Ads or LinkedIn Ads. Just click the Add one more source when configuring the first importer. also offers you ETL functionality – the Transform module that allows you to blend data from various apps, calculate custom metrics, and prepare your data for further visualization. This is very convenient when you need to merge data from different apps in one place.

Once all the sources are connected, you will be able to create a comprehensive cross-channel PPC dashboard. We’ve already blogged about building visualizations in Looker Studio, so please check our Looker Studio Tutorial: Dashboard for Beginners for step-by-step instructions if you prefer to create a dashboard yourself.

Here is an example of a full PPC dashboard from to easily visualize and track the performance of your campaigns.

1. Cross channel dashboard

Such dashboards are important instruments that enable data-driven decisions. As we’ve already mentioned, they can display near real-time data, enabling you to monitor Google Ads key metrics and performance indicators. Also, they help integrate data from multiple sources and systems, bringing together diverse datasets into a single view.  

If you need help with data visualization, creating insightful reports, or understanding your data, then you may want to consider’s consultancy services for businesses. With over 15 years of experience, our experts can help you out with data visualization, business analytics, data automation, and setting up data infrastructure. 

Tracking metrics in Google Ads

Tracking Google Ads metrics is crucial for successful campaign management and optimizing advertising performance. By monitoring and analyzing key metrics, advertisers gain valuable insights that enable data-driven decision-making. Metrics also highlight areas for improvement within campaigns. Therefore, by closely monitoring metrics, advertisers can identify underperforming keywords, ad groups, or targeting settings, enabling them to optimize their strategies for better results.

For better visualization, you can use powerful tools like to export data on a schedule to Looker Studio and to create insightful dashboards. These will help you to better track your metrics and share campaign results with clients or managers.

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  • Olga Cheban

    Technical Content Writer at I’ve been writing about data, tech solutions, and business for years, and this passion never fades. I find technology fascinating and hope that the content I create helps people discover new solutions and ideas. My other passions are birdwatching, swimming, and reading📚

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