Soapbox: Why I’m so glad Google ended our relationship with Average Position
It was not a reliable indicator of how well ads were positioned and even more important, we shouldn’t rely on a single metric to make decisions anyway.
It happened – Average Position is gone. Caput. Outta here. It was, at its best, a vanity metric and not a reliable indicator of how well your ads were positioned. On a small scale, you could have seventy ads in position one and thirty ads in position five for an Average Position of 2.2. An Average Position of 2.2 would have many believe their ads were at the top more than 70% of the time.
Now I understand positioning is very important. Google understands, too, otherwise it wouldn’t have provided us with Top Impression Share and Absolute Top Impression Share as an improvement over Average Position.
Still, these new metrics simply lend themselves to help us see the bigger picture of our campaigns’ overall health. Some PPC managers, including myself, have long been obsessing over where ads are positioned rather than doubling down on the entire ecosystem of a campaign. It is time we place more importance on how all campaign metrics are intertwined and work together to improve ROI. As PPC managers, we don’t have to rely on a single metric to make decisions – nor should we want to.
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