With conversion tracking, you can track what people do once they get to your website. First, you define the action you want to track as a conversion goal (for example, sign up for a newsletter). Then, once someone visits your website and signs up, Microsoft Advertising can count it as a conversion. Before Microsoft Advertising can count the action as a conversion, it checks to see if the person clicked on your ad first.
Microsoft Advertising will not count any user activity as a conversion, even if it matches a conversion goal, unless it is able to find that the user clicked on an ad before completing the action. If the user clicked on more than one ad before completing the action on your website, the last ad clicked will be counted as the conversion and the other ad clicks will be counted as an assist to the conversion. This process of attributing the credit of one or more conversions to your ad campaigns, ad groups, and keywords is referred to as conversion attribution.
There are multiple models used when attributing conversions to ad clicks. These are referred to as attribution models. Microsoft Advertising uses the last ad click attribution, meaning if the someone clicks on multiple ads before doing the action your website, the last (most recent) click before the conversion gets credit for the conversion. Some of the other models include last click, first click, linear, time decay, etc.
For conversion tracking to work, Microsoft Advertising needs to be able to collect data from your website. This requires Universal Event Tracking (UET).
Microsoft Advertising allows advertisers to configure the conversion attribution process using the following settings:
All conversions: Microsoft Advertising counts all conversions (per tracked goal) that happen after an ad click. This the default option and a good choice if the advertiser wants to track sales. If a user makes 3 purchases, Microsoft Advertising would count 3 conversions and attribute them to the ad click.
Unique conversions: Microsoft Advertising counts only unique conversions that happen after an ad click. This is a good choice if the advertiser is not interested in the number of sales, but instead whether or not a certain kind of lead was generated.
Note: If you change the counting option, the change only applies to the conversion goal going forward and doesn't impact the conversion goal data before the change.
Sharing: You set if the goal applies to all accounts or a specific account. If you select all accounts, you won't be able to set the currency of the revenue value. The currency of the revenue value shown in reporting will be determined based on the account currency to which the conversion was attributed.
When attributing conversions to clicks for all accounts, Microsoft Advertising looks at user`s ad clicks across all the accounts under the customer in order to find the ad click that is closest to the conversion. In most cases, this approach yields correct results because your ads lead the user to the same website. However, there are also instances where you set up multiple accounts with ads that lead users to different websites. In those cases, looking at ad clicks across accounts leads to incorrect attribution. As an example, if you had two accounts – A1 managing Website1 and A2 managing Website2, it is possible that conversions that happen on Website2 can be attributed to clicks coming from A1. Because of this, Microsoft Advertising allow you to optionally associate a goal to a specific account. When a goal is configured as account level, all conversions of its type will be attributed to clicks from that account only. Note that once selected, this property can't be changed.
Revenue: Not all conversions are equal. Some are worth more to your business than others. You can assign numeric values to their conversions, thereby see the total value driven by their advertising across different conversions, rather than simply the number of conversions that have happened. Revenue can be any value from 0 to 9999999 with 3 decimal fields and you can set the currency if sharing is set to a specific account. You have three revenue options when creating a goal:
To see the complete list of currencies available for conversion goals, see Conversion Goal Revenue Currencies. If the currency for the conversion is different from account currency, the revenue value will be converted to the account currency using the average daily foreign exchange rate.
Conversion goals and UET tags work together so you can track the actions people take on your website:
So the UET tag gathers the information that the conversion goal uses to track conversions in Microsoft Advertising. To learn more, see What is conversion tracking?
Once advertisers install the UET tag on their website, the tag reports user activity on advertiser website to Microsoft Advertising. When a visitor to an advertiser website performs an action that matches with the advertiser`s conversion, the action qualifies to be counted as a conversion. However, before Microsoft Advertising actually counts it as a conversion that happened because of the advertiser's campaign, Microsoft Advertising checks to see if the user clicked on at least one advertiser ad before visiting the advertiser`s website. In other words, Microsoft Advertising will not count any user activity as a conversion (even if it matches goal definition) unless it is able to find an advertiser ad that the user clicked on before converting. If the user clicked on more than 1 advertiser ad before converting on the advertiser website, then the closest ad click is said to have caused the conversion and the remaining ad clicks are said to have assisted the conversion. This process of attributing the credit of one or more conversions to advertiser`s ad campaigns, ad groups and keywords is referred to as conversion attribution. There are multiple models used in the industry when attributing conversions to ad clicks. These are referred to as attribution models. As explained above, Microsoft Advertising uses last ad click attribution, meaning if the user clicks on multiple ads before converting on the advertiser`s website, the last (most recent) click before the conversion gets credit for the conversion. Some of the other models include last click, first click, linear, time decay etc.
Microsoft Advertising does not currently include any functionality to detect or eliminate test, fraudulent or duplicate conversions.
De-duplication/fraud detection should not to be confused with "Unique" conversions. Setting a conversion goal to report unique conversions basically tells Microsoft Advertising to count only 1 conversion of that goal type for an ad click. It does eliminate duplicates but does not detect fraudulent conversions. Further "Unique" conversions is not always a good choice for several goal types such as purchases.
There could be several reasons why conversions may not match. Keep in mind that Microsoft Advertising doesn't expose conversion data to any third-party platform, and each system uses its own logic and goal setup to track conversions. As such, some level of discrepancies are expected.
Why Microsoft Advertising may not be counting conversions
Why Microsoft Advertising may be overcounting
Why Microsoft Advertising may be undercounting
If you still have questions about the discrepancy, here is a checklist of things you need to verify:
You can view aggregate conversion counts for each goal in the Conversion Tracking > Conversion Goals page. Further, you can run the Goals reports in the UI (Reports tab) or API to segment that data by accounts, campaigns, ad groups and keywords.
Within 2 hours of UET conversions and 5 hours of non-UET conversions. For Mobile App Install type conversions that we track with the help of certified partners, please consult that partner you use for their SLA on reporting app install actions back to Microsoft Advertising. Learn more.
No. When Microsoft Advertising matches UET logs with conversion goals to count conversions, it isn't case sensitive.