Last week Google announced the launch of its latest tools aimed to help advertisers to get the most out of the Google Display Network. These tools have been designed to increase transparency and help advertisers with targeting and optimising their ads and to measure their results.

Relative CTR
Firstly, to aid measurement of results, Google now records the ‘relative CTR’ for advertiser’s display ads.

The relative CTR differs from the usual CTR (click-through-rate) as this reports how ads have performed in comparison to other ads on the same page, rather than just the number of clicks divided by the number of impressions.

In general ads on the display network have a much lower CTR than those on the search network, as user behaviour tends to differ from one to another, as on the search network users are actively searching for something, whilst on the display network they are browsing a website for something else.

Therefore Google has added this relative CTR so that advertisers can see how well their ads are performing ‘relative’ to other ads on the page. It is calculated as follows:

(Your CTR) / (CTR of other ads on the same page) = Relative CTR (measured in x)

For instance if your ads are achieving a CTR of 0.05% and your competitors ads CTR is 0.02%, then your relative CTR is 0.05/0.02 = 2.5x.

Similarly if your ads are not performing as well as others on the page you would see a relative CTR less than 1. For example if your ads are achieving a CTR of 0.02% and your competitor ads 0.05% your relative CTR is 0.02/0.03 = 0.4x.

In order to view the relative CTR for your ads you must customise your columns and choose the correct option from the ‘Columns’ drop down menu – you can see the data at both Ad Group and Campaign level.

Impression Share
Google has also added ’impression share’ data to show how many times an ad actually appeared on a web page compared to the total number of times the ad could have been shown.

This gives the advertiser an idea of how much more exposure their ads could receive if they were to increase their ad rank by increasing their quality score, budget and/or keyword bids.

Advertisers are also shown Lost IS (budget) and Lost IS (rank), which highlights any impressions being lost due to budget and impressions being lost due to Ad Rank, respectively.

Content Ads Diagnostic Tool
Like the ad preview and diagnostic tool, the ‘content ads diagnostic tool’ shows if your ads are appearing on chosen placements and provide an explanation if they are not.

Unseen Impression Filter
Another very useful feature that Google have added is an unseen impression filter, which filters out impressions that occur on parts of a page that are unlikely to be seen by visitors to a website.

For example, if an ad appeared near the bottom of a page and a user had to scroll down the web page in order to see it then Google will filter out these impressions.

This means that advertisers choosing to bid on a cost-per-impression basis will not be charged for impressions that have a low probability of being seen.