What affects impression share

Basically, Impression share = impressions / total eligible impressions. It’s based on a lot of factors which we’ll dive into shortly. Impression share is available at campaign, keyword and ad group levels.
A 50% impression share for example means that out of all bid auctions that your ad could have been shown in, you showed for half. So you lost 50% of the traffic. Generally this can be a budget issue but there are other factors at play here.

What is a good impression share?

A good impression share you might think is 95%-100%. This is true in most cases unless you’re in a high competition niche or industry. For example, if the competition is high and you have 100% impression share, your budget will be exhausted VERY quickly.

If your impression share is 60%, your ad will only be seen 60% of the time, and in turn get less clicks. But if the competition is high, you’ll still have enough leads or sales.

So what exactly affects Impression share?

Ad quality.

  • Quality score of ads determines ad position & impression share.
  • The more ‘matched’ the ad copy is to the keyword, the higher the position and impressions.

Keyword match types.

  • Broad match gets more impressions and wastes money.
  • Phrase match gets more impressions than exact match, but wastes less money than broad.
  • Exact match gets less impressions but only shows for that exact phrase.

Negative Keywords increase impression share for what you want to show for.

  • Ads displayed for fewer search queries. Gaining a higher impression share by only showing for qualified users.

Budget & Keyword Bid.

  • The more money that’s available to spend on keywords, the more the keyword will show.


  • The less locations targeted compared to a competitor, strengthens your impressions in that area. E.g. if someone is targeting all of Ireland, Dublin will take a lot of their budget. meaning less budget & impressions for the rest of the country.


  • The more your ad is displayed during the day, the more impressions you get.
  • Increases or decreases in budget during the day will increase or decrease impressions.

Bidding strategy.

Target CPA needs at least 30 conversions before it will start to learn how to effectively use budget.

Target Impression Share can be bid for in three ways. You set a goal Impression Share Percentage.

  • Absolute top of page.
  • Top of page.
  • Anywhere on the page.

You can also set a max CPC bid to help not overspending.

Google also has some useful information for your reading here

I hope that’s covered what affects impression share, if you have any questions or more insightful information regarding us, don’t forget to leave us a comment below! Maybe you might also be interested in how AI can help journalism – check that out over here.

Happy tweaking those ads folks!

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