As of September 30th, Google now has a new Adwords performance metric called the “View-Through”. The metric is primarily designed for those advertising on Google’s content network, and while the new metric will provide an additional indicator for campaign performance, the terminology currently has a few people confused. Per Google, this “feature provides a measure of the number of online conversions that happened within 30 days after a user saw, but did not click, a display ad on one of the sites on the Google Content Network”. Essentially, view-through can be used to better measure the return on your investment for your display campaigns based on how users are responding to your display ads at a later date. A cookie is generated at the time of the display ad’s impression; the visitor’s behavior is then tracked and can measure if that user shows up on the advertiser’s site through direct search, paid search, organic search, or some other track able form of engagement aside from the display ad itself. Clicks on your search ads will not interfere with view-through conversion tracking.
The measurement can offer a more accurate depiction of your ads influence and how effective your ad is at drawing visitors to your site, even if they don’t click right away. As an example, the user may see the ad, like it, but immediately close their browser bar without clicking on the ad because they were signing off for the day. Then, ten days later, they resume their product search and remember the name of your website or company from the display ad and go to your website directly. Although they did not click on the display ad ten days earlier, your ad did do its job of engaging and pulling the potential customer to your website.
The view-through metric has been added to the new Google Adwords interface as a default. It could be a sign that Google is really looking to get advertisers to engage with their Adsense content network, and that it may be time to re-optimize any content campaigns you already have running.