How and Why to Link Google Search Console in Google Ads (Updated August 2018)

why you should link your search console to google ads

Google just announced – wait, it was actually announced back in 2013, but that was so five years ago 🙂 – that you can link Google Search Console in your Google Ads account.

Say what? Why would you want to do that? I think the better question is, why wouldn’t you want to do that?

Let us enlighten you with the following knowledge. Take heed and get your account linked now!

Why Should You Link Your Google Ads Account To Google Search Console?

Um, because you’ll get more data. DUH!

By linking Google Search Console (GSC) with Google Ads you get a snapshot glance of paid vs. organic keywords. You will get data at the Search Query and Keyword levels so you can see the incremental value of paid vs. organic terms.

This should be really great news for paid advertisers and SEO campaigns alike. Google’s spin is that you can see new, organic opportunities and new, paid search opportunities. Equally, you can see- in a really simple report- where you are performing well organically and make adjustments to drop paid search bids or pause keywords altogether if you’re on a limited budget. This is especially great news whether you’re doing both yourself or if you’re working in an agency that provides both PPC and SEO to the same client.

How to Create A Google Search Console Linked Account In Google Ads

Similar to linking Google Ads to Analytics, click on the gear icon in the upper right corner and select Linked Accounts. You’ll see a new option for Search Console (well, at least it was new back in 2013 when we first published this post). Follow these steps:

    1. Access ‘Linked accounts.’ Click on the Tools button on the top navigation of your Google Ads dashboard. Clicking this will produce a dropdown of 20 different options. Click the link titled  “Linked Accounts” under the Settings section.
    2. Select ‘Search Console’ from your list of options. Since first releasing this feature in 2013, Google has added several other options under the “Linked Accounts” heading. Search Console is one of the last options in the list, located in the 9th position of available options – fifth row, right-hand side.Click the link for ‘DETAILS’.
    3. Click the link titled “LINK” to launch Search Console. Pretty self-explanatory, we think.
    4. Enter in your website address, and click “CONTINUE”. Again, we also find this step to be pretty self-explanatory. One note of caution: make sure your domain names in each account are a match. For instance, if you use https:// and www in front of your domain name in Ads, make sure you select the Search Console account with the same naming convention.
    5. Voila! Your Search Console account is now linked to your Ads account. Depending on whether or not this is successful for you, you might receive one of the following results from your attempt at linking these accounts.
      Here is what you should see if your Search Console account was successfully linked to Google Ads.
If your attempt to link your Google Search Console and Google Ads account proved unsuccessful, here is the result you should expect to see.

 

If you have already verified ownership of your site in Google Search Console – congratulations, you’re all set!

If you haven’t claimed your site, simply click the blue link for “Claim it at Search Console.” This will direct you to Google Search Console and provide the recommended methods for verifying your site.

Need more help? Check the Google Help article here or contact a friendly DOM digital advertising specialist (link below).

The Paid & Organic Report: The Motherload Of Google Performance Data

The Paid & Organic Report can be found under the Predefined reports tab (formerly known as the Dimensions tab). By the way, if you’re not familiar with this section of Google Ads, take some time and play around. There are so many insightful reports here.

To get to the Paid & Organic report, navigate to Basic > Paid & Organic.

Check out the screenshots below. Although the search terms and other personal information has been blurred out, below is a synopsis of what you’ll see in the paid and organic report:

“This table shows how your paid and organic results performed for every search that triggered an ad or organic listing.”

The data updates once a day and we do not believe that you can see historical data, rather it starts accruing once you link the accounts. However, our Ads reps were not certain about this at the original time of publication. Over the last five years, we have confirmed that as such :).

Conclusion

Google keeps giving us more and more reporting features from within the Google Ads interface. You can see competitive data, analytic data, funnel data, data…..data…..data! Now there’s even more! It’s almost like Google wants you to be successful.

Hell yeah, they do! We love that they’re tying all their properties together. Instead of being an outlet mall, Google Ads has evolved into being a one-stop-shop.

Takeaway TIP: If you’re only running AdWords, and not actively managing SEO, you should verify your site with GSC so you can link them in the future.

If you’re interested in learning how you can drive better results in digital advertising, learn more about how to receive a free Google AdWords audit.

Nikki Powley

About The Author

Nikki Powley is a contributing writer to Direct Online Marketing. She contributes articles that discuss digital advertising and PPC strategy. Nikki sits on the board for OVConnect, an organization that supports young business professionals. She enjoys spending time with her husband and son.

View Nikki's full bio.
Get a free, no-obligation consultation with a digital marketing expert