Attribution Modelling in Google Ads

By crystalmarketing | June 17th, 2021

Because we live in the middle of the most competitive business environment that’s ever existed – in large part because of amazing tools that are (relatively) easy to use like Google Ads – it’s become harder and harder to make a splash with paid advertising than ever before.

At the same, though, innovative strategists are using approaches like attribution modeling in Google Ads to dramatically improve the success of their campaigns.

A game changing new way to look at PPC in general, we breakdown what attribution modeling is and why it’s so important in the rest of this quick guide!

What is Attribution Modelling?

To put it simply, attribution modeling allows you to assign a value for each individual touch point and interaction users have with your advertising campaigns to determine which ones are the real “movers and shakers” – which ones are contributing the most to your conversion rates and which ads are doing the bulk of the heavy lifting for you.

As a general rule of thumb, successful advertisers leveraging Google Ads are going to sometimes have dozens – if not hundreds – of different ad variations in the market at any one particular point in time.

Prospects are going to bump up against these different ads at different points in time, often seeing multiple advertisements that are all part of the same campaign – though they react differently to each of these interactions.

Benefits of Attribution Modelling in Google Ads

By assigning each individual add a different value using the Attribution Model it’s possible to see which ads are really succeeding, which ads are under performing, and analyze the differences to improve advertisements across the campaign – all while boosting conversion rates and profitability at the same time.

Other benefits of attribution modeling with Google Ads in particular include:

  • Being able to reach customers earlier in the buying cycle, helping to speed up the sales process and shorten the time from initial touch point to purchase as much as possible
  • Better tailor marketing and advertising approaches to your specific business and ideal customer base to improve optimization, cut wasteful spending, and boost profitability
  • Improve your bidding strategies when spending money on PPC, pushing you towards more effective campaigns while shifting resources from historic under performers

… And that’s just the tip of the iceberg!

Of course, there are different types of attribution models you’ll want to be aware of when you are assigning values to your individual ads, creatives, and campaign components.

Let’s run through some of them right now.

Types of Attribution Models

Data Driven

Data driven attribution modeling essentially puts your value assigning process on autopilot, taking full advantage of machine learning, Big Data (paired with your own analytics), and AI to produce the most accurate attribution model possible.

This kind of approaches picture-perfect for marketers that have nearly endless budgets, have a mountain of data to pull from, and are always improving click and conversion numbers.

Last Click

This kind of attribution model heavily weights the very last step that prospects take before they become customers, showing exactly where customers are coming from when they make the decision to pull out their wallets and actually purchase something.

First Click

Basically the opposite of the Last Click model, this approach shows you where your prospects initially enter your sales and marketing funnel. This lets you know how they begin their process from going from complete stranger to paying customer and how you might better improve and optimize these numbers.


A linear attribution model essentially weights every single interaction, every touch point, and every contact with advertising and marketing pieces exactly the same across the board. This can be a great model to get a “40,000 foot view” of your business in a macro kind of sense.

Time Decay

A Time Decay attribution model is going to lean more towards the final few touch points that prospects have before becoming paying customers.

This model is built off of the “slippery slope” methodology of thinking, a method of thinking that says prospects become more aware and more excited about becoming customers over time – and that it’s the last few “links in the chain” of your marketing that move them over the finish line.


This attribution model assigns 40% credit to the very first and the very last interaction prospects have with your advertising and marketing while providing 20% to the rest of the touches along the conversion journey.

You’ll be able to better glean which keywords, which clicks, and which actions are the most important when it comes time for prospects to convert into paying customers while still seeing all the individual interactions they have through their customer journey.

Wrap Up

At the end of the day, attribution modeling is a hugely powerful tool when used correctly.

It’s certainly something all modern marketers are going to want to learn the ins and outs of to succeed in the world of paid advertising and PPC these days.

Use the inside info highlighted above to act as a bit of a “crash course” to start your research into attribution modeling and you’ll be able to jump right in without missing a beat.

Here’s to building a better (and more profitable) business with the help of attribution modeling ASAP!

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