Understanding Unattributed Revenue or Conversions

There may be multiple reasons why there are unattributed conversions seen at the group level. Usually, conversions that are unattributed result from Marin not recognizing the specific keyword ID that should be associated with conversions coming in from a revenue upload.

There may be occasions that you notice a Succeeded Partially status for your revenue upload files in the Activity. When opening the revenue file, you may see a Results error message like this:

Warning: attributed only to the creative.


Please review the below explanations for this error and review your account to see if one of these resolves your issue. To learn more about other possible Result column messages, check out our dedicated article.

Missing Keyword ID / Keywords Not Synced Or Created (Attributed Only To The Creative)

If a revenue upload includes conversions for a keyword ID that is not in the system, these conversions will go to Unattributed at the group level.

This warning indicates that the revenue upload included creative IDs found in Marin, but could not find the keyword IDs. Conversions will then be attributed to the creative ID in Marin only, and conversions for the missing keyword ID will go to Unattributed.

If keywords are not fully synced or created in Marin at the time of the revenue upload, conversion data may also go to Unattributed at the keyword level. This would cause conversion and revenue metrics to only succeed at the creative level.

Duplicated Marin Keyword IDs

If there are several keywords that have the same Marin Keyword ID (typically an 8-digit alphanumeric string found in the Destination URL), Marin will not know which keyword to attribute conversions to. These conversions will then be assigned to Unattributed at the group level for these keywords. To correct this for future conversion attribution:

  • Check to make sure URL Builder is turned on.
  • Create a report of problematic keywords from the grid.
  • Edit the Destination URL column for these keywords by leaving only the landing page and stripping off all Marin parameters.
  • Bulk upload these keywords (making sure the Destination URL column is in place).
  • URL Builder will then append tracking parameters along with a new, unique Marin Keyword ID for each uploaded keyword.

For more information on how to resolve duplicate tracking IDs, please read our Help article. 

Missing Tracking Parameter

Make sure the suggested Marin tracking ID (i.e. mkwid=[distribution][uniq_id]) is included in the destination URL for keywords. If this parameter is missing, Marin will not be able to parse out the keyword ID and recognize where to attribute conversions. To correct this for future conversion attribution:

  • Check to make sure URL Builder is turned on.
  • Generate a report on keywords that are missing the Marin tracking ID.
  • Edit the Destination URL column for these keywords by leaving only the landing page and stripping off all Marin parameters.
  • Bulk upload these keywords (making sure the Destination URL column is in place).
  • URL Builder will then append Marin tracking parameters for each uploaded keyword.

Keyword ID Not Found In Same Group As The Creative

Because revenue is attributed to the creative first via the creative ID, if the Keyword ID or Keyword/Match Type combination is not found in the same group as the creative, revenue will not be attributed at the keyword level.

Wrong Tracking Parameter

Sometimes it will appear that both keyword URLs and creative URLs look correct, and yet there are still unattributed conversions at the group level. If you drill into the settings of one of these keywords, you may notice that the system has not found any Tracking ID(s).

Check to see if tracking parameters are correctly set up (Settings>Revenue & Tracking>Tracking IDs). There must be a value set in the Tracking ID field for Marin to recognize correct attribution.

If the Tracking ID value does not match what is being appended to the Destination URLs, this will also need to be adjusted. Click Save to make sure Tracking ID values are properly being set.

For more information on URL Tracking and Tracking IDs, please click here to read our help article.

Creative-Level Tracking

When using creative-level tracking, the creative URL is served. This means you must make sure the two parameters, keyword_text and matchtype, are included in these URLs because this pairing tells the system which keyword to attribute the conversion to. If you are missing one or both of these parameters, then you will see unattributed conversions. 

Creative-Level Tracking For Yahoo!

When using creative-level tracking, Yahoo! will pass Marinthe canonical form of the keyword, which might be different than the keyword already in Marin. It is possible that the canonical form of the keyword passed through the revenue file won't be an actual keyword seen in Marin. This is why the conversion is only seen at the creative level.

Therefore, to avoid these unattributed conversions, we suggest using keyword-level tracking for your Yahoo! account.

Note: For Google sitelinks, you should remove {creative} from the URL. For Microsoft sitelinks, you should remove {Adid} from the URL.

If you are using placeholder keywords to track sitelinks, make sure the actual sitelink URL does not contain the {creative} / {Adid} parameter. We recommend replacing this {creative} / {Adid} parameter with the hard-coded value of: sitelink.

For example: instead of pcrid={creative} / {Adid}, update to pcrid=sitelink. If this {creative} / {Adid} parameter is included in the actual sitelink URL, unattributed conversions will appear.

When the system scans a revenue file, it looks to attribute to the correct creative first by finding a match for the Creative ID value in the revenue file to the Pub ID value in the Ads grid. If a match is found, the system will only search within the same group of that creative for the matching keyword by looking up the Keyword ID value in the revenue file to the tracking ID value seen in the keyword's URL within the Keywords grid.

If the system finds the creative but cannot find the keyword, conversions will be assigned to Unattributed at the group level. Because sitelink placeholder keywords reside in a different group than the creative that it is referring to, the {creative} / {Adid} parameter must be removed in order for conversions to be correctly attributed.

Microsoft Keyword Match Types

If using the {matchtype} tracking parameter, Microsoft will populate this with the served match type rather than the bidded match type. This means that if you are on creative-level tracking and do not have all three match type variations of a keyword, conversions that come through for that missing keyword variation will not attribute.

For example, imagine you were bidding on the keyword ‘bicycle’, and have it set to Broad Match. If a user searches for the term ‘bicycle’, this is technically an exact match of your keyword. Therefore, Microsoft will populate the {matchtype} ValueTrack parameter with e (for exact), rather than b (for broad). If you don’t have ‘bicycle’ as an exact match keyword in this group, the revenue will fail to be attributed to any keyword.

To fix, either:

  1. Switch to keyword-level tracking. This will eliminate this issue.
  2. If you stay on creative-level tracking, switch the {matchtype} parameter for Microsoft URLs to {BidMatchType}. Microsoft will populate this parameter with the bidded match type, and therefore this attribution issue will not occur. Please keep in mind that Microsoft returns the following results: bb (for broad), bp (for phrase), and be (for exact). Marin is able to accept any of these entries in the Match Type column in your revenue file.

Note: Including all match type variations of a keyword is not a recommended workaround. This will not result in accurate keyword-level attribution since Marin will simply attribute to the wrong match type rather than just the creative.

Microsoft {Param1}

If using keyword level tracking with Microsoft, it’s important to set creative destination URLs to: {param1} in order to tell Microsoft Ads to call upon the keyword level URL. Without the use of {param1}, Microsoft will only find and serve the creative URL while ignoring the keyword URL, which can cause unattributed revenue.

For more information, please click here to read our help article

Broad Match Modified Keywords

If you are passing the keyword_text in revenue files for broad match modified (BMM) keywords, there is currently an error in which the + does not come through and is instead seen as a space. Therefore, if you are on creative-level tracking and are relying on the keyword_text field to attribute the conversions to keywords, this will not work (it will report as Unattributed). This is because the BMM keyword in the revenue file that shows a space will not match the BMM keyword in Marin (shows +).

Our product teams are working on correcting this, but in the meantime, you can switch to keyword-level tracking as a workaround to avoid this issue.


Marin is case-sensitive, therefore if keywords in a revenue file have a different case than what is seen in Marin, conversions will go Unattributed. For example, if the revenue file returns a conversion for the keyword 'disco ball' but you only have the keyword 'disco Ball' in the application, this conversion will not find the keyword.

For creative-level tracking, the ValueTrack parameter {keyword} is not case sensitive, and always returns a lowercase keyword regardless of the case of the actual keyword. For this reason, it is important that you do not have the same keyword in both upper and lowercase within the same group, since it will cause issues when attributing the data.

Tracking Parameters Appended Twice

Usually, this pertains to clients using redirects. Check to see if your Destination URLs have redirects and parameters that have been double appended to keywords, which may be causing this error. When Marin looks for a unique ID, it stops after it finds the first instance. However, conversions may come in for either of the appended tracking IDs. When a conversion comes in for a tracking ID that was not parsed out of the URL, Marin does not know where to attribute it and puts it at the group level as Unattributed.

This issue was probably due to uploading the redirect (instead of the landing page) in the Click Through URL column, which causes keywords to have two redirects instead of one. To correct this for future conversion attribution:

  • Check to make sure URL Builder is turned on.
  • Generate a report on keywords that have double appended parameters.
  • Edit the Click Through URL column for these keywords inserting the landing page.
  • Bulk upload these keywords (making sure the Click Through URL column is in place).
  • URL Builder will rebuild the redirect for each uploaded keyword.

*Unattributed only pertains to missing or incorrect Keyword IDs. It will not be due to missing or incorrect Creative IDs. If there are discrepancies with conversions attributing to Creative IDs, these conversions will not be found at the creative level or Unattributed at the group level; therefore the total number of conversions for keywords and creatives within the same group will not be equal.

Cross-Client Attribution

If you are using Cross-Client Attribution, you need to ensure that the parsing settings found in Settings> Revenue & Tracking > Tracking IDs matches those that are set in the parent account. If these do not match, attribution may fail to work correctly.

Latent Conversions From Edited Keywords Or Creatives

If you are on keyword-level tracking and you edit your keyword URLs to have a new unique ID, latent conversions could still come through in the revenue file stemming from the old keyword URL and earlier ID. The conversion will go Unattributed because that earlier ID is no longer part of the current keyword URL. This is expected behavior. This same scenario can happen if you are on creative-level tracking, in which you are identifying individual creatives by [uniq_id] instead of [creative_id].

If you edit Google creatives, Google will assign that creative a new Publisher ID ( {creative} value). Therefore, any latent conversions stemming from the old URL containing that earlier Publisher ID will not attribute to that creative since the Publisher ID has been updated.

Combined Approach For Enhanced Campaigns Using _d{Device}

When using the combined approach, the URLs should include something like:


The keyword tracking IDs (the three values seen when you click into a specific keyword) should only consist of the tracking ID without the {device} parameter attached. For example, in the URL above, they are: abc123, sabc123, or cabc123.

If the tracking IDs include this _d{device} parameter (e.g. abc123_d{device}sabc123_d{device}cabc123_d{device}), then you will see unattributed conversions when:

  1. You are using keyword-level tracking (and not inserting keyword_text with match_type).
  2. When you are using placeholder keywords.

Despite revenue files showing the keyword ID with this _d{device} value, Marin only matches up the value before _d{device}, therefore the tracking IDs for a keyword in Marin should not have this parameter. In order to correct this please check the following:

  1. Go to Settings > Revenue & Tracking > Tracking IDs and make sure that the Device type appended? option is enabled with the correct device delimiter selected (ie. if you are using _d{device}, make sure Underscore('_') if the device delimiter selected). If this is not enabled, this explains why the keyword tracking ID is showing incorrectly. To fix this, enable this option with the correct device delimiter selected and click Save.
  2. If this Device type appended? option is enabled with the correct device delimiter selected, you will need to proceed with the following workaround to correct this:
    1. Navigate to Settings > Revenue & Tracking > Tracking IDs.
    2. Update the Tracking ID stop character to something temporarily different, then click Save.
    3. The tracking ID reprocessing Tasks job should now appear. Once this has completed, update the Tracking ID stop character to the correct value, then click Save

Once the tracking ID reprocessing job has completed, the keyword Tracking IDs should be corrected without the _d{device} parameter.

Written by Marketing @ Marin Software

Last published at: December 8th, 2023