Search Ads 360 Tips ⑤ Setting up a Data Driven Attribution Model

Media & Platforms

In the fourth part, we introduced the Data Driven Attribution Model (DDA model) as an evaluation model and the benefits of using it in Search Ads 360.

In this part, we will explain how to set up the DDA model in Search Ads 360 and its management screen. We will also introduce examples of actual cases where the DDA model has led to improved results for those who are interested in using Search Ads 360 or those who are already using Search Ads 360 and are struggling with the results with the last-touch model.

Implementing the DDA model in Search Ads 360

When setting up a DDA model in Search Ads 360, I recommend that you first check the data requirements. The following is a step-by-step explanation of the actual setup process.

— Check the data requirements

To set up the DDA model, you require over 15,000 clicks and 600 Floodlight conversions in the past 30 days. The clicks can be any search engine, social engine, or engine tracking account that you have added to Search Ads 360. Once the number of clicks and conversions meets the criteria over a consecutive 30-day period, Search Ads 360 will begin preparations to create the model. To create the DDA model, Search Ads 360 will take an initial learning period of approximately 24 hours.

Once the DDA model is created, the created DDA model is applied to the conversion data for the past 60 days (if available) and all future conversions.

— Create an attribution model

After checking the data requirements, let’s go on to creating and setting a DDA model. Note that the DDA model must be created one day prior to creating the custom conversion.

① Select [Attribution] in the left column of the Search Ads 360 management screen.

(Figure 1: Creating a DDA model – Selecting [Attribution])

② Click [New ▼] and select [Data Driven Model].

If you are creating an attribution model for the first time, you may not be able to select [Data Driven Model]. In that case, create a defined model and try again.

(Figure 2: Creating a DDA model – Selecting [Data Driven Model])

③ Entering the name of the DDA model and select the Floodlight activity to use.

(Figure 3: DDA model creation screen – Selecting a Floodlight activity)

④  Select the channel group creation method.

A channel group specifies the type of interaction to track in the DDA model. This channel group includes keywords, product groups, and paid search ad clicks generated from dynamic targets. The procedure differs depending on whether you want automated channel groupings or custom channel groupings.

▶Automated channel groupings

This is recommended if you want to understand how the DDA model works before creating a custom model, or if you are adding or changing keywords frequently and want to reduce the hassle of applying labels to new keywords. Labels are a text string that can be applied to multiple campaigns, ad groups, keywords, etc.

Labels allow reporting and batch editing of items to which the same label is applied. Select [Automated channel grouping], enter the email address to receive notification when the model is ready, and click [Save].

▶Custom channel groupings

If you want to create a model for specific interactions, the custom channel group is your choice. This makes it easier to understand how each custom channel group interacts with others to drive user behavior. While you can specify up to 15 custom channel groupings, it is recommended that you specify no more than five channel groupings because it can assign credits to less relevant channel groupings along the route.

Also note that to create a DDA model with custom channel groupings, labels must be applied 12 hours prior to creating the model. Select [Custom channel grouping] and select the labels to use. Then enter the email address to receive notification when the model is ready and click [Save].

— Create a custom conversion

To set up the created model as a source for bidding strategies, you have to create a custom conversion. Follow the following steps to create a custom conversion:

① Select [Segment] in the administration screen.

(Figure 4: Creating custom conversions 1)

② Select [Floodlight] from [Custom conversions] and click [+New column].

(Figure 5: Creating custom conversions 2)

③ Enter the name of custom conversion, select the Floodlight activity, and metric to use.

Select the DDA model created in Attribution and click save.

(Figure 6: Creating custom conversions 3)

—Apply custom conversions to bid strategy

Follow the steps below to use the created custom conversions as a source for your bid strategy.

*I will skip the explanation of setting up a bid strategy.

① From the [Bid strategies], check a bid strategy and click [Edit]. To create a new bid strategy, click [+Bid strategy].

(Figure 7: Applying custom conversions to bid strategies 1)

② On the bid strategy settings screen, select the created custom conversion and click [Save Bid Strategy]. The name of the created model is displayed as the attribution model.

(Figure 8: Applying custom conversions to bid strategies 2)

— Reflect the numbers on the management screen

To see the numbers with the DDA model applied in the Search Ads 360, select [Floodlight] from [Segment] and drag and drop the created custom conversion to the right. Clicking [Apply] to show the numbers on the management screen.

Create other attribution models to compare the differences in numbers between models.

(Figure 9: Displaying custom conversion reports)

Examples of improvements with the DDA model

So far, we have explained how to set up a DDA model. Next, we would like to show you an example of improvements done be the Search Ads 360 DDA model in the life infrastructure industry.

(Figure 10: Example of Search Ads 360 introduction to infrastructure)

This advertiser came to us after they have done what they could to achieve high goals during the busy season with Google and Yahoo! listing ads each. We decided to introduce Search Ads 360 to further improve overall results by utilizing the data accumulated from both Google and Yahoo! and applying them to the other.

With the cross-engine campaign management and DDA model utilizing the data from both Google and Yahoo!, the results of Google Ads increased. As a result, the conversion rate (CVR) increased by 28% and the number of conversions (CVs) increased 1.3 times, contributing significantly to the improvement of overall listing ad results.


In this part, we introduced how to set up a DDA model and showed an example of utilizing the DDA model. We hope that combined with the other parts, you got an overview of what a DDA model is and how to set it up in SA360. If you are interested in learning more about using Search Ads 360 and the Search Ads 360 DDA model, please contact us.

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