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Get To Know Your Competition With Google Ads Auction Insights

Welcome back, digital marketing disciple.

With the ease of accessibility to advertise online, it's no surprise that most companies use Google Ads to grow their brand exposure, drive site visitors and generate more sales than they could ever dream of.

"This all sounds great" I hear you say, "Let's get this show on the road" I hear you cry! But hold your horses there chum, as this level of accessibility means that you're not the only one out there thinking of running ads on Google for your services or products. This means that you need to stay one step ahead of the game and be fully aware of how visible your adverts are in comparison to your competition, allowing you to understand your dominance in each of your advertising campaigns.

The solution to this is a nifty little tool, hiding in plain sight within your Google Ads account. Ladies and gentlemen, it gives me great pleasure to introduce to you, the most insightfully insightful insights tool on Google Ads, the one and only (drum roll please..........) Auction Insights!

Where To Find It?

Simply log into your Google Ads account, click on the campaign that you want to analyse, and then click the Auction Insights button under the Ad Groups tab. It's worth noting that this feature is currently only available for Search and Shopping adverts, so a big sorry to all you Display, Video and Discovery advert enthusiasts out there. Also, there are a few more columns available columns for Search campaigns which are purely down to the nature of the campaign type.

Column Definitions

Time to break down the function of each column within the Google Auction Insight tool. The following describes each column from left to right…

Display URL Domain

  • This column shows the URL of the competition. Your URL is shown as You.

Impression Share

  • This column shows the number of impressions you made divided by the estimated number of impressions that you could have made.

  • This data shows how frequently your adverts have been shown in comparison to your competitors.

  • This metric is normally a result of the campaign budget.

Overlap Rate

  • This column shows how often your advert was shown at the same time as your competitors.

  • To put this into context, if you had an overlap rate of 50%, it means that in 5 out of 10 times your advert showed for a search on Google, an advert from the competitor was shown as well.

Position Above Rate

  • This column shows a percentage of how often your competitor’s advert has appeared in a higher position than your advert when they both appear in the same search results.

  • To improve this metric, simply look at increasing your bids or improving your keyword quality score.

Top Of The Page Rate

  • The Top of The Page Rate shows how frequently an advert was shown in one of the top positions of the paid search results in Google.

  • A higher percentage than your competitors will indicate that you're approach is more aggressive than there's is, resulting in a greater chance of your advert being seen higher in the listings than others.

Absolute Top Of The Page Rate

  • Exactly the same principles as the Top of The Page Rate metric, but showing you the results for an advert being shown in the number 1 position as opposed to one of the top positions.

  • This column is great to see how your bid changes affect the rate in which your adverts appear in the top spot for Google Search ads.

Outranking Share

  • This column shows how often your advert ranked higher in the auction than your competitors, or if your ad was shown when theirs wasn't.

  • Keeping this metric in the higher figures will ensure that you're gaining more visibility than your competitors

Go Forth & Get To Know Your Competition

So now you have the tools, it's time to put your new-found knowledge to the test and start looking at how you're ads are performing compared to your competition.

Things I look out for are:

  • Has a competitor(s) drastically upped their efforts and are smashing my adverts across the board? If so, why have they done this and how will it affect the account performance.

  • Has a competitor(s) drastically reduced their efforts? If so, why have they done this? Could be an indication of seasonality where you might want to follow suit or see it as a gap in the market that you can now exploit.

As always I would love to hear about your journey with using Google Ads Auction Insights tool or even where you share some more tips on how you use it to dominate the competition, so feel free to get in touch on social media or even by email at

Ciao for now,




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