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Search Impression Share

What is Search Impression Share and How Can You Use It?

Search Impression Share

Search Impression Share is a standard metric within Google AdWords and is an underutilized, but highly important metric to look at. SIS is defined as “The Number of Impressions you have received, divided by the approximate number of impressions you were eligible to receive.” Eligibility is based on your current advertisements’ targeting, approval status, bids, budget and quality score.

Search Impression Share is, arguably, a good metric to take a temperature gauge of your AdWords account’s health and all of the above mentioned metrics. Search Impression Share is percent based; therefore, a 100% SIS means your advertisement showed every time it was eligible to be displayed, while a 5% SIS means that your ads did not show 95% of the time (this metric is also referred to search impression share loss). Keep in mind, an SIS of 100% is rarely achieved, but not outside of the realm of possibility. An average campaign runs with an SIS of approximately 20%.

Online Google AdvertisingNow that we know what Search Impression Share is, how do we use it? SIS is very closely tied to budget; you can quickly impact it by increasing budget. But this is not recommended as a first step. There are many other metrics to address within an existing budget that will impact your SIS. I suggest you investigate the metrics listed below before you ever increase budget:

  1. Conversion Rate – Never increase budget with a conversion rate lower than 1%
  2. Bid – Should be competitive, but not too high
  3. Targeting – Only target areas that you want to market to (you would be surprised how often campaigns are targeted to too broad of an area)
  4. Quality Score – Make sure that all of your keywords, ad copy, and your landing page are relevant to one another
  5. Click-through-rate (CTR) – Always keep an eye on this metric. The CTR for a Search Campaign should average at 2% or higher, while a Display Network campaign should be 0.90% or higher.

Once you have analyzed and optimized the metrics above for optimal performance, you can take another look at your Search Impression Share. Typically, you’ll find that SIS has already improved, without a budget increase, as Google now considers your online advertisements to have a higher relevance and quality, which also lowers your cost-per-click (CPC)! From this point you can safely recommend a budget increase to improve Search Impression Share because you know the conversion rate and click through rate should remain relatively constant. And now that your “housecleaning” is complete, additional budget should increase Search Impression Share and be a wise investment.

For more information on Search Impression Share or Pay Per Click Marketing contact our paid digital marketing advertisement professionals today!