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  • Writer's pictureAdam Yourist

What To Do When Google Analytics And Ads Data Don't Match


What To Do When Google Analytics And Ads Data Don't Match on Media Intercept

As a digital marketer, you rely on data to make informed decisions about your marketing strategy. Google Analytics and Google Ads are powerful tools that provide valuable data, but sometimes the data doesn't match up. In this article, we'll explore why this can happen and what you can do about it.


Why Google Analytics and Ads data may not match?


Before we discuss what you can do to fix discrepancies between Google Analytics and Google Ads data, it's essential to understand why this issue arises in the first place.



Data capture and processing differences: Google Analytics and Google Ads use different tracking codes and tracking methods, which means they may not capture and process data similarly. For example, Google Analytics uses cookies to track website visitors, while Google Ads uses pixels.

  1. Data sampling: Google Analytics samples data when there's too much traffic to process, while Google Ads doesn't sample data. This can result in differences between the two platforms' data, as Google Analytics' sampled data may not be entirely accurate.

  2. Timezone differences: Another reason why data may not match is due to timezone differences. If your Google Analytics and Ads accounts are set to different time zones, the data may not match up.

  3. Attribution models: Google Ads and Google Analytics use different attribution models, which can cause discrepancies in data. Google Ads uses a last-click attribution model, while Google Analytics uses a more comprehensive one.


What can you do to fix the discrepancies?

  1. Check the time zones: If your Google Analytics and Google Ads accounts are set to different time zones, adjust them to match. This will ensure that the data captured by both platforms are in sync.

  2. Compare data over the same time period: When comparing data from Google Analytics and Google Ads, make sure you're comparing data over the same time period. If you're looking at data from different time periods, the data won't match up.

  3. Check for data sampling: If you suspect data sampling is causing the discrepancies, you can check if your Google Analytics data is being sampled by looking at the sampling percentage in the report. If the sampling percentage is high, try to adjust your sampling rate by decreasing the time range of your report or using a higher-level aggregation.

  4. Use the same attribution model: To ensure that the data from both platforms match, you can use the same attribution model in both Google Ads and Google Analytics. Using the same attribution model, you can compare data from both platforms more accurately.

  5. Consider third-party tools: If you're still experiencing discrepancies between Google Analytics and Google Ads data, consider using third-party tools to help reconcile the data. These tools can help you identify and fix discrepancies and provide a more accurate picture of your website's performance.


Conclusion:


While discrepancies between Google Analytics and Google Ads data can be frustrating, they're common. By understanding why the data discrepancies occur, you can take steps to fix them and ensure that you're making informed decisions based on accurate data. Remember to check the time zones, compare data over the same time period, check for data sampling, use the same attribution model, and consider third-party tools if necessary. You can reconcile the data and make the most of these powerful tools with a little effort.




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