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The difference between Google Analytics goals and Adwords conversions (2 of 2)
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The difference between Google Analytics goals and Adwords conversions (2 of 2)

Analytics & Tracking

Today I complete the rest of my article on  The difference between Google Analytics objectives and Adwords conversions.



The completion of a Google Analytics goal is recorded the same day it is made, the Adwords conversion is recorded the day the first click was made (within a maximum of 30 days following the first click). For example, if an Internet user arrives on June 1, 2011 on the site after having clicked on an Adwords ad and returns 29 days later through another source of traffic to convert, this will be established on the day of its first click, i.e. June 1, 2011.


The attribution of traffic sources is different for the two types of conversions. For the completion of a Google Analytics goal, the last traffic source will be the one attributed to it. For Adwords, if a user clicks on an ad and converts within the next 30 days following his click, the source will remain Adwords regardless of the other sources of traffic that he could use to return to convert on the site. Also, in Adwords, the conversion will be given to the last ad or keyword clicked, even if the Internet user has already clicked on other ads before or has seen ads without clicking on them.


It is complicated to see the details of conversions by campaigns, ad groups or keywords in the Adwords interface. The number of conversions in Adwords reports is the sum of all those configured in the account. However, it is easy to see the details of the different conversions that there were for all the campaigns in the “conversions” section of Adwords.    

In the Google Analytics interface, it is easy to see the details of the objectives by campaign, ad group or keyword. In addition, it is possible to measure the behavior of visitors who have accomplished these objectives.


The use of importing Google Analytics goals into Adwords should be done only for the purpose of having a quick estimate of their performance without having to go to the Google Analytics interface. It is also practical to use this technique if you do not want/can not add the Adwords conversion code to the desired pages. In other cases, it is somewhat useless to import all your goals if you have access to the Analytics account, which allows you to see them in much more detail.

The use of Adwords conversion should take priority over the use of Google Analytics goals in the Adwords interface if only because of the attribution of traffic sources or the time of conversion recorded.

Finally, a good practice is to have the same main conversions in your Adwords account (Adwords conversions) and in your Google Analytics account (goals). This provides additional security in case there are implementation or configuration problems.