Fractional Credit Conversions, Explained

In Google Ads, a half conversion means that more than one ad click is credited for generating a conversion. This is known as fractional credit, and it is represented by decimals, such as 0.5. A 0.5 conversion usually means that two separate searches and ad clicks helped to generate the conversion, each earning half the credit.

Not all conversions can receive fractional credit. It depends on how you set up the conversion in Google Ads. More specifically, it depends on which attribution models you’re using for that conversion.

Here’s an example of how a half conversion might be generated in Google Ads.

Example of a 0.5 conversion in Google Ads

Let’s say you’re using Google Ads for a limousine company. To make sure your ads are relevant to users’ searches, you’ll probably want to structure your account with several ad groups to categorize the various types of searches they use. 

For example, you might have an ad group for “Wedding Limos.” And another ad group might be for “General Limo Searches” (i.e. “limousine company near me,” “limo services,” and so on.

Now, let’s say a prospective customer is a bride-to-be who needs a limousine for her wedding. Her search “journey” might look like this:

  1. She searches for “wedding limos” and clicks your ad. She likes what she sees, but she doesn’t take any action at this time.
  2. A few days later, she searches for “limo companies near me,” and clicks another ad for your business. She remembers your business and wants to take the next step. This time, she fills out a form to request a quote, which is tracked as a conversion in your Google Ads campaign.

In this case, two of your ad groups were responsible for the conversion. So they each receive half the credit:

  1. 0.5 conversion for your “Wedding Limos” ad group
  2. 0.5 conversion for your “General Limo Searches” ad group

That’s how you end up with half (or fractional) conversions in Google Ads.

Misconceptions about half conversions

Our client asked us, “What the heck is a 0.5 conversion?? Does that mean they filled out the form but it didn’t go through?”

It’s an understandable mistake, but no, it doesn’t mean that at all. Thankfully, half conversions have nothing to do about a conversion being partially generated. It’s about attributing partial credit for the conversion to different keywords and ads.

To be clear, a half conversion is:

  • NOT when your form breaks during submission
  • NOT when someone calls your business and hangs up
  • NOT when makes a discounted purchase
  • NOT anything related to a partial generation of a conversion

Again, it’s all about conversion credit, not conversion completion.

What’s the point of fractional conversions in Google Ads?

In Google Ads, fractional conversions provide clearer insight into which of your ads is responsible for generating a conversion. If more than one ad click results in a conversion, you want to know where those clicks originated. This gives you a better understanding of your customers’ journey and your ad performance.

Without fractional credit tracking, you won’t truly know which ad(s), keyword(s) and ad group(s) helped to generate the conversions. For example, it would be unhelpful to credit a full conversion to more than one ad group, because that would incorrectly inflate your conversion data. Similarly, you wouldn’t want to ignore an ad group that played a direct role in generating the conversion. 

By giving a half credit to two separate ads groups that played a role in the conversion, your campaign data shows the true number of conversions, credited to those two ad groups.

What are attribution models? How do they affect fraction conversions?

When you set up a conversion to track in Google Ads, you decide how to attribute that conversion to different actions that the searcher took. This is called an attribution model.

Google has some great information about attribute models. But here are some examples of the different model options you can select:

  • Last click: This gives FULL credit for a conversion to the last-clicked ad (and the corresponding keyword term)
  • First click (discontinued 2023): This gives full credit to the first-clicked ad.
  • Data-driven (default): This model gives fractional credit to all the keywords and ads that played a part in generating the conversion. 

If you want to track fractional conversions in Google Ads, you should select the “Data-driven” attribution model when setting up the conversion.

Need some help? Give us a buzz.

Our “nerds” at MarlinSEM are happy to help manage your Google Ads campaigns, set up conversion tracking and grow your business with PPC. Request our pricing for a quick overview, or email Mike Marlin directly at

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Fractional Conversions

1. What is a fraction of a conversion in Google Ads?

A fraction of a conversion in Google Ads means that at least two ads played a role in the conversion and therefore received partial credit. For example, if a user entered two different searches and clicked two of your ads, but only converted after the second click, each ad would get half a conversion (0.5) credit.

2. How do you get a partial conversion in Google Ads?

In Google Ads, you get a partial conversion when a conversion is generated by more than one keyword and ad click. Each of those keywords therefore receives partial credit for the conversion, so you have greater insight into the user’s full journey.

3. What does 0.5 conversion mean in Google Ads?

A 0.5 conversion in Google Ads means that the keywords and clicks that generated the conversion received only half credit. The remaining half (0.5) would be generated by one or more other searches, meaning that a user clicked on different ads for the same advertiser before converting.