Why Google Ads are getting rid of the “average position” metric

As a marketer, one key question should be important above all else; is the advertising making money? Whilst other information from your adverts are helpful, it’s all inconsequential if the advert doesn’t generate revenue. One metric on my Google Ads helped me prove this time after time again, the average position metric.

Sure, an advert might rank 7th on search results, but if it’s generating £4 leads with potential of over £500 per sale; who cares? Increasing the bid might make my advert be higher in results, but the cost-per-lead will also potentially increase.

A couple of weeks ago I discovered that Google were getting rid of the average position metric. Whilst annoying, it makes sense from their perspective.

The metric was useful as it allowed advertisers to understand an advert’s perfect position within search results. However, it didn’t encourage advertisers to increase their bids or get their adverts at the top of results.

In addition to the average position metric, Google also have “top of page rate” (TPR). Google will be replacing the average position metric with the TPR metric next month, which will subconsciously encourage advertisers to increase their keyword bids. TPR implies that your ad isn’t getting the desired exposure, thus prompting you to increase your bids.

Overall the TPR metric is less helpful than the average position metric. It seems like a cheap way of Google making extra pennies off of impressionable advertisers.

When they do put this change into action, don’t be intimidated by your low TPR percentage. Focus on what matters most; the cost of each lead. Are you making money from your ads? If so, ignore TPR, as it only exists to tempt you into increasing your spend on Google Ads.

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