How To Build An E-Commerce Ads Dashboard: Key Metrics

How To Build An E-Commerce Ads Dashboard: Key Metrics

Ever heard of Pearson’s Law? It states that, "When performance is measured, performance improves. When performance is measured and reported back, the rate of improvement accelerates."

(In other words, reporting is Peter Drucker on steroids 🦾)

And a central piece of performance reporting is having a universal dashboard that everyone on your team can efficiently access to get on the same page.

Pilothouse media buyer, Dustin “Dashboard Specialist” Dobravsky, shares some insights into what he includes in his dashboards, and how he builds them.

Here are the basic metrics Dustin includes on all dashboards and a high-level view of how he looks at them:

  • CPM (Cost Per 1,000 Impressions) 👉 Shows the supply and demand of an audience and how competitive it is. A high CPM is not necessarily a bad thing as it can indicate a high quality converting audience. Monitoring it in relation to audience size can signal saturation or, in relation to conversion rate, indicates audience quality.
  • Link Click CPC (Cost Per Click) 👉 CPC shows the relationship between CPM and Ad CTR. It’s a particularly important metric early on to find efficient CPCs to gather data without breaking the bank. Once conversions are coming in and ROAS is achieved, CPC doesn't really matter as it’s all about the right blend of audience quality and conversion rate. For example, you can have high quality audiences AND high converters, which will yield a high CPC -- but that’s okay, because it’s working.
  • Link CTR (Click Through Rate) 👉 Shows the efficiency of an ad in relation to the targeted audience. High CTRs indicate that the ad is relevant and well matched to the targeted audience. As ads mature and get saturated, CTR decreases
  • CPA 👉 Most important metric as ads can have super cheap clicks with good CTR, but if they don’t convert within your funnel, there is a problem. Naturally, the FB algorithm allocates spend towards best converting ads, however, cheap CPCs and high CTRs may alter that allocation of budget towards specific ads, so very important to check which ads actually convert. 
  • Funnel CVR (Conversion rate) 👉 Very important metric to check full funnel efficiency. Click bait aside, if you have cheap clicks + high CTRs the ad is efficient. If the ad is efficient with low CVR, then the landing page is NOT efficient and needs to be improved / more user friendly. We want to see a 2%+ CVR for e-commerce landing pages.

Here are metrics specific to e-commerce dashboards:

“E-commerce dashboards are a bit more complicated,” Dustin says, “We have to account for delayed purchases, full funnel optimizations, and where users may bounce off the ads or landing pages.” 

(Additionally, key metrics such as AOV and ROAS must be accounted for given the account’s goal.)

Here are all the columns we include in an e-commerce dashboard:

Here’s more detail about these metrics:

  • Same-Day Sales vs Total Sales 👉 Important differentiation to understand user behaviour. Is this purchase an impulse buy or a multi-day decision? This helps us understand our customer’s journey. 

(BTW, we went deep into this last week with the ROAS Multiplier. Hit ‘reply’ and let us know if you need access to that email.)

  • Same-Day CPA vs Total CPA vs CPA Difference 👉 Essential differentiation in metrics. CPA oftentimes is the most important metric within your account. A low CPA generally means a high ROAS and hence a positive cashflow for your account. 
  • Same-Day ROAS vs Total ROAS 👉 Generally considered the most important metric: what return are you getting on your ad dollars? A high ROAS generally means a low CPA and good account health/efficiency. 
  • AOV 👉 The Average Order Value is an important metric to help optimize upsells and cross sells. Are customers taking you up on your post-purchase offers, or is there more work to be done?

Remember how we mentioned we’d tell you HOW to build a dashboard? Dustin kindly did that for you. Access it and make a copy for yourself.

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