L2T Blog

Google Now Tracking Store Visits

on May 17, 2019

As announced in 2018, Google is now reporting store visits as a conversion metric within Google Ads for eligible dealerships (35% are qualified for tracking). This gives you the ability to see which campaigns, keywords and devices drive the most store visits to your dealership.

This new metric can help dealers:

  • See which campaigns, ad groups, keywords and devices drive store visits to the dealership
  • See more value with search campaigns which tend to have higher CPLs. For example, store visit conversions for our dealers have shown that Dealer campaigns have converted to store visits at a 10.5% rate! Overall, all campaigns for qualified clients have converted to store visits at a rate of 14%.
  • Make optimization decisions on high-quality metrics other than CPLs

Google Ads ties these visits back to Paid Search, Display and Video traffic by Store Visit Conversions. A Store Visit Conversion can be:

  • A click on a paid search ad
  • A viewable impression of a display ad (Google considers a display ad viewable when at least 50% of the ad is onscreen for at least one second)
  • A view of a video ad on YouTube

A Store Visit Conversion is recorded when a user visits the dealership after completing one of the above actions within 30 days. Only qualified accounts show Store Visit Conversions in Google ads (see below for qualifications) and are reported at the campaign, ad group, keyword and device level.

How does Google know the consumer visited the dealership?

Store Visit Conversions are based on anonymous and aggregated data gathered from people who have location history turned on via their mobile devices. A conversion cannot be tied to an individual ad click or person. Google takes into consideration factors such as the actual location of where the visit is being captured to eliminate people near the store, or those who visited for too much time (for example, employees of that business). Google claims their algorithm is accurate 99% of the time.

Google uses signals such as:

  • Google Earth
  • Google Maps
  • Wi-Fi signals
  • GPS location signals
  • Google query data
  • Visit behavior

Currently, about 35% of dealers are able to track Store Visit Conversions. Google sets minimum thresholds to track store visits which include:

  • Google Ads linked to verified GMB location
  • Location extensions active
  • Minimum number of website and store traffic per month (this information is not published by Google)

Your agency cannot guarantee store visit tracking, it’s up to Google. And even if a dealer is capturing store visit conversions one month, it is possible that the following month they would not if their web or store traffic dips below the unpublished minimum threshold.

We discuss these results with our clients who are qualified for conversion tracking and continue to look for ways to use the metrics in our campaign strategy. Contact us for more information.

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Google Now Tracking Store Visits