Visualized Budget Pacing (Episode #7) – AIMCLEAR‘s Deep in the Sheets

Posted in Analytics & Reporting, Paid Search

Posted on December 3rd, 2014

Today’s episode of Deep in the Sheets illustrates how to manage and track your budget to ensure ideal pacing throughout any given time frame. Dion Plakos explains how to identify whether you are spending budget too quickly or if you should allocate more dollars throughout any PPC campaign by following this nifty Excel guide. Easily view budget pacing by calculating “cost per day” to produce a visually appealing line chart that displays progress in an easy-to-follow illustration.

Enjoy, and tune in for our next episode of Deep in the Sheets on December 17.

Read on for the full transcript:
Hi everybody, this is Dion! On this week’s Deep in the Sheets we will be looking at “visualized budget pacing.” [MUSIC PLAYS] So, the point of this budget document is to make it really easy, at a glance, to see where your budget pacing is going and how you are so far. So you can see right here, the grey line going up to the top is ideal. If we spend right along that grey line everyday, we’re right where our budget should be at every point in time. So, right now you can see we’re slightly under budget. Each square is the day of the week, And, uh, so, we’d look at this today and say, “Hey, we might wanna spend a bit more to get back on pace to be exactly where we need to be. So, to create this we have a couple of calculations; we’ll go through all of this in a second here. The first thing we need to look at is how much we actually spend per day. So, in this case this is going to be for the month of November, We know there’s 30 days and we have a budget of $5,000. So, we’ll just do a real quick 5,000 divided by 30, that gives us $166.67 to spend per day. We’ll take that number, we’ll plug it into this document over here, and you can see dragging down here the ideal cost per day is $166.67. That makes an ideal trend, so, the ideal trend is basically this—this number versus the day before. So, going down the list you can see—jump back up here—You can see on the 8th of November, it should spend all the days prior to that plus another $166. Uh, so what you end up with is, by the 8th of November, I should have spent $1000, 333 cents. So, we’ll need to plug in this “cost per day” value. So, these are just example numbers that we’ll plug in here just for the sake of argument—just to see it. So, we do that we can see—uh, you know, there are so many numbers here—by the 15th of November we should be at 50% of our budget. But in actuality we’re at 56%, so making this visualized is going to make this easier to see overtime as trends. So, we will add in a quick chart here—I like to do a line chart. And the first thing we’re gonna wanna do is just resize this—get it looking good. We’ll want to remove certain sections of our data, so we don’t need actual cost. We don’t need trend, all we really need are the percents—we wanna look at percent per day over time. So, the actual percent over time versus the ideal percent at that time. Hit “OK” there. We got our two trends here, it looks a little funky, so I like to mess with the formatting. In this version of Excel we just jump in here—this is gonna be our grey line, so there are no markers. And the line style—I’m sorry—the line color we’ll just make that a nice grey. Just kind of simple. That’s where we should be. We’ll change this one to only makers, so there’s no line on this. There’s no maker outline, and the markers are just a nice blue square. Perfect! So the last thing we see we need to do here is remove the days that haven’t happened yet. Just jump down here. Of course, all you have to do is drag your time frame up to the last day you actually have data for. So, that’s all it takes. You can see at this point with these numbers we were doing real good for a while—we were right on pace. We spent really high, we spent a little low, and at this point it looks like we’re at about 55%—well, 56% when we should have been at 50. With this quick line chart, you can quickly see where your budgets are at that current point in time, and over time versus where they should have ideally been.

Subscribe Today

We'll keep you updated on the latest Aimclear musings & appearances