Average position, one of the original Google AdWords metrics is going away. Search position metrics are new to Google as a way for advertisers to better understand how and where their ads are being shown to consumers.
Back in November, Google announced four new search ad position metrics would be rolling out that would provide more detail beyond the average position metric long provided to advertisers.
The latest announcement from Google is that the average position metric will be sunsetted in September and replaced with new metrics that will give advertisers more visibility where their ad actually appears on the page, versus average position which only described the order in which an ad showed compared to other ads. For Skai clients, these new search position metrics in Google Ads means new opportunities for improved transparency into bid positioning, enhanced reporting and, of course, optimization.
The definition of average position, showing how an advertiser’s ad ranked against other ads, has long lacked specificity and visibility to the advertiser for some time. For example, a 1.7 average position meant your ad usually appears in position 1 or 2, but it didn’t necessarily mean that your ad was at the top of the page, merely it was the first ad on the page.
What are these new metrics?
- Impr. (Absolute Top) % – the percent of your ad impressions that are shown as the very first ad above the organic search results.
- Impr. (Top) % – the percent of your ad impressions that are shown anywhere above the organic search results.
- Search (Absolute Top) IS – the impressions you’ve received in the absolute top location (the very first ad above the organic search results) divided by the estimated number of impressions you were eligible to receive in the top location.
- Search (Top) IS – the impressions you’ve received in the top location (anywhere above the organic search results) compared to the estimated number of impressions you were eligible to receive in the top location.
The Skai Point of View: Goodbye Average, Hello Absolute
With this change, we see a lot of opportunities for our clients to leverage the new and improved measurement and this new capability of targeting.
Here are a few examples:
- Marketers can maximize their opportunity to compete and show keywords where it matters, specifically on mobile, where customer attention is harder to obtain if you’re not at the top of the page.
- Using the new smart bidding strategy “Absolute top of results page”, will ensure that you are getting the top share of the absolute top position on keywords that matter—such as brand terms, This could replace the bid-to-position strategies that you may be using today.
Skai recommends you monitor your CPCs and CTRs as you start, to see how this change impacts your marketing performance. Working closely with Google, Skai is already analyzing and tracking these new metrics to determine all of the opportunities for including these metrics into optimization and reporting.
In the meantime, Skai clients can be confident that their optimization programs will continue unchanged as these new metrics are added to the Skai platform. Additionally, we recommend advertisers work with the Skai team to start thinking about how these new metrics will relate to the objectives/results/ROI.
For some strategies, physical location on the page is key to impression share and success. For others, it may be a less important variable to consider during optimization but will allow more insight into areas such as the brand value of search
As Google plans to sunset the previous average position in September in favor of these new metrics, Skai will continue analyzing these observations across our clients and will be providing updates in the coming weeks and months.