Calculate your real ROI for ad campaigns

What’s the best way to calculate your true return on investment (ROI) for your paid ad campaigns? Many businesses pay for Facebook ads and Google AdWords campaigns but aren’t sure how much revenue they generate in return.

Both platforms provide feedback on the ROI that you’re getting, but often these results are skewed. Facebook and AdWords will often show that more people have made a purchase after seeing your adverts than in reality.

If you cross reference the numbers with your product pages or e-commerce store, you’ll often find that the number of conversions is slightly lower than reported by Facebook and Google AdWords. So how can you accurately see your conversions and your ROI?

Track your database for accurate ROI

You need to keep track of your online database and record your true conversions. This is the best way to get an accurate picture of the effectiveness of your campaigns.

Tracking your true conversions through your database will also save you money. If you’re paying Facebook R1000 for a certain number of impressions on your adverts, they’ll deliver that number (or close to it).

However, if you’re really only getting three-quarters of that number, you’re paying Facebook more than necessary. This means you can scale back your Facebook or AdWord spend and still reach the same number of consumers.

Double check your metrics

Keep an eye on your Google Analytics metrics and compare it to your Facebook metrics. This will give you a better understanding of your true conversions versus the number of conversions Facebook reports.

You can use this information to adjust future results from Facebook campaigns. If you know that actual sales are about three-quarters of what Facebook reports, then you can assume this is the case for all paid campaigns going forward.

This knowledge will also allow you to optimise your ad spend for future campaigns. Your database should include the number of sales and leads generated from Facebook or AdWords, and directly from your site. This will allow a quick and easy comparison.

You need to look at real figures – sales from your site, the number of visitors coming from Facebook or Google, as well as the money coming into your account. These numbers will give you a true reflection of your ROI on paid ad campaigns.


Sorted Design Agency is a creative company that constantly looks for solutions to other people’s problems. These problems come mostly in the visual format, such as graphic design, logo and illustration, but we’re experts in brand development, website design, and digital SEO campaigns as well.


Based in Pretoria and Cape Town, Sorted has been in the content marketing industry since 2006. We assist your company with its corporate identity by communicating core values through content and articles written for your website, blog and news area. This content is supported by AdWords and social advertising, which facilitates wider reach and audience growth. Turn your website into a business tool.


Sorted also owns two other businesses; InkFish Print Studio – a printing company that handles a range of promotional materials for businesses and other services for individual customers, and Pampiri + Kie – a gifts and stationery store selling online and in-store. Both of these companies operate from Cape Town and Pretoria.


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