My post about Google Analytics filters went down pretty well so I thought I’d keep the analytics bandwagon rolling and talk about how to use the new Advanced Segmentation feature to get useful data for setting advanced ad scheduling options.
For those of you who don’t know, AdWords has a feature where bids can be increased or decreased by a set multiplier based on the time and day of the week. This is really useful since for most accounts traffic at certain times and on certain days is more likely to convert so it is more valuable.
Google Analytics can tell you how conversion rates vary by hour of the day or by day of the week, but it doesn’t give you both pieces of information at the same time. This is still useful but it means you can’t take into account weekends or similar odd days. You can get AdWords reports segmented by hour of the day, but these reports do not contain conversion data so they are useless for ROI or CPA based campaigns.
In this post I will tell you how to use the new Advanced Segmentation features to get the day parting information you need so that you can bid more for the best traffic.
AdWords will let you separate a day into up to six periods so you can’t bid by the hour. In this example I’ll segment the traffic into five segments; use existing data to decide how many segments you’ll need. Here are the instructions
- Log into Google Analytics and select your paid search profile (if you don’t have a profile that filters out organic traffic use your standard profile).
- Click the “Advanced Segments” link in the left hand menu and then click “Create a new customised segment”
- You are now in the customised segment interface. Click “Visitors” under the “Dimensions” label in the left hand menu. Then drag “Hour of the Day” into the box labelled “dimension or metric”
- My first segment will be from midnight to 06:00 so I’d select “Less than or equal to” in the condition drop down box and enter “6” in the value box.
- If you aren’t in a PPC only profile then you’ll need a PPC filter as well. Click “Add “and” statement” and then drag “Medium” from the left hand menu to the box (In the Traffic Sources category). Select “cpc” in the value box.
- Name your segment and then move onto the next one. You’ll have to add an extra “and” condition to tell the segment to start after 0600.
Now you can view the report and select your segments. As the picture above shows that over the whole week midday traffic is the most valuable but on Friday morning traffic is better whereas on Saturday midday traffic is the best.
Google will only let you choose three segments to display at once but to see everything on a day by day, hour by hour basis use the export to .csv option and then view the graph in your favourite spreadsheet. By comparing the percentage difference between the conversion rate of a particular segment and the average conversion rate you can tell how much more that traffic is worth to you.