How To View Google Search Terms in Google Analytics

We’ve written a few posts already about Google’s recent change to reduce the number of search terms visible within Google Ads accounts and its impact on ad account management. Well, now we have another tip for advertisers to get some insight into the search terms that were removed by using Google Analytics.

Let’s walk through the steps to accessing a report in Google Analytics that can show you some of the missing search term data in Google Ads.

Accessing The Report

First, you’ll want to open the Source/Medium report by going to Acquisition > All Traffic > Source/Medium.

Next, find google/cpc in the source/medium column and click on it to drill down into that report. From there, you’ll add the secondary dimension “Search Query”. You can quickly find this dimension by using the search function at the top of the drop down.

You’ll now see a list of search queries attribute to your Google Ads account. When looking at the data for one of my accounts, this report shows 151 search queries. Looking in the Google Ads interface over the same time period, it only shows 27 queries.

Saving & Scheduling The Report

Since it’s likely you’ll be using this report on a regular basis, I recommend saving this report. By saving it, all customizations, including advanced segments, secondary dimensions, sorting, etc. are enforced whenever you view the saved report.

You can quickly access saved reports by going to Customization > Saved Reports in the left-side menu.

If you don’t want to have to log into Google Analytics to view the report, you can set up Sharing to send the report directly to your email.

I would recommend sending it as an Excel file instead of the PDF default so that you can edit the data if needed. You can also set this report up to send at regular intervals. I’d recommend weekly so you can make sure you’re staying on top of reviewing search terms.

This is the workaround we’ve been using for our clients due to the lack of search term visibility within Google Ads.

Have you been using Google Analytics to view search term data? Let us know in the comments below!

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