ROAS (Return On Ad Spend) is an essential ecommerce metric for digital marketers to analyze the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns.

Using valuable insights this metric provides, businesses can determine the return they’re getting from every dollar spent on advertising.

Here, you will explore:

  • What ROAS stands for,
  • How to calculate your ROAS,
  • Difference between ROAS and ROI,
  • Good ROAS for different platforms,

And a lot more important points to answer all your questions about this key performance indicator.

What Is ROAS (Return On Ad Spend)?

ROAS is one of the most important key performance indicators (KPIs) for understanding the effectiveness of your advertising efforts. It compares the revenue generated by an ad campaign to the cost of that campaign, either as a ratio or percentage, providing insight into your company’s ability to turn ad spend into profit.

  • Significance of ROAS: A high ROAS signifies a strong return on advertising investment, indicating efficient and profitable campaigns. Conversely, a low ROAS suggests your campaigns are less effective in generating revenue relative to their cost.
  • Application of ROAS: By calculating ROAS, you can identify which campaigns are performing well and which require optimization. It also aids in budget allocation and selecting the most profitable advertising channels.

How To Calculate Return On Ad Spend (ROAS)?

You can calculate your ROAS by dividing the total revenue generated from an ad campaign by the total cost of the ad campaign.

Calculate Return On Ad Spend (ROAS)

Let’s say your advertising campaign costs $2,000 and generates $10,000 in revenue. This results in a ROAS of 5:1, or 500%, meaning for every dollar spent on advertising, you earn $5 in revenue.

To accurately calculate ROAS and ensure it reflects the true cost and return of your advertising efforts, consider the following:

  • Include In-house Advertising Costs: Salaries and expenses of your advertising team must be factored in. Ignoring these costs can skew your ROAS, making it an unreliable metric.
  • Account for Commissions and Fees: Remember to deduct any affiliate commissions and network transaction fees from your revenue before calculating ROAS.
  • Incorporate Key Advertising Metrics: Metrics such as average cost per click (CPC), total clicks, cost per thousand impressions (CPM), and total impressions bought should be included in your ROAS calculation for a comprehensive view.

By taking these elements into account, you’ll get a more accurate and useful ROAS, providing a clearer picture of your advertising campaign’s effectiveness.

Differences Between Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) And Return on Investment ROI

ROAS (return on ad spend) and ROI (return on investment) are two similar concepts in that they both measure the effectiveness of an advertising campaign in terms of the revenue generated in relation to the amount spent on the campaign. However, there are some key differences between the two metrics:

1. Calculation

The main difference is the way they are calculated:

  • You calculate ROAS by dividing the total revenue you earned from the campaign by the total amount spent on it, which translates to:

ROAS = revenue from ad campaign / cost of ad campaign

  • You calculate ROI by subtracting the total cost of the campaign from the total revenue generated by it and then dividing the result by the total cost of the campaign.

ROI = (net profit / total investment) x 100

Let’s see what these two terms offer with the help of an example:

“An online book store tries to increase their sales. Therefore, they invest $50 in advertising and this campaign generates $100 in revenue. In this case, the ROAS would be 2:1, or, 200%. On the other hand, if the campaign generates $100 in revenue and costs $50 to run, the ROI would be 100%.”

2. Output

  • ROAS: This metric is tailored for short-term analysis, focusing specifically on the revenue generated by advertising campaigns. It’s ideal for evaluating the immediate effectiveness of individual campaigns and comparing them to one another.
  • ROI: Unlike ROAS, ROI offers a broader perspective on profitability, incorporating a wider range of financial factors beyond advertising spend, such as cost of goods sold and overhead expenses. It’s valuable for assessing the overall financial health and long-term profitability of a business.

3. Reliability

Both ROAS and ROI are crucial for informed business decision-making, but they serve different purposes:

  • ROAS is precise in measuring the direct return from advertising efforts, making it perfect for optimizing campaign performance.
  • ROI provides a comprehensive view of profitability by including all related costs, not just advertising spend. This broader perspective is essential for evaluating the true profitability of marketing efforts and guiding strategic decisions.

Utilizing both metrics allows for a balanced analysis, combining the immediate insights of ROAS with the comprehensive overview provided by ROI. This dual approach helps identify not only the effectiveness of specific campaigns but also their impact on the business’s overall financial performance.

Why Is Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) Important?

ROAS is a crucial metric for understanding the effectiveness of your advertising efforts, offering insights that can significantly influence your business’s marketing strategy. By leveraging ROAS data, you can:

  • Optimize Ad Campaigns: Make data-driven decisions to enhance your ROI by adjusting campaign strategies for better performance.
  • Assess Marketing Effectiveness: Evaluate how well your marketing initiatives are converting ad spend into increased revenue, allowing for cost-efficient budgeting.
  • Boost Profitability: Understand the direct impact of your advertising budget on your business’s bottom line and adjust for optimal profitability.
  • Identify Improvement Opportunities: Discover areas for strategic adjustments, such as targeting or budget allocation, to improve campaign outcomes.
  • Analyze Customer Behavior: Use insights into customer purchasing trends to refine marketing tactics and better align with consumer preferences.

What Is A Good Return On Ad Spend (ROAS)?

Determining what makes a good ROAS is crucial for optimizing advertising campaigns and enhancing business performance. Here’s a streamlined approach:

  • Establish a Minimum ROAS: Before starting your ad campaign, calculate a target ROAS to evaluate performance effectively and make timely optimizations for future campaigns.
  • Understanding ROAS Calculation: ROAS is calculated by comparing the revenue generated from an advertisement to its cost, expressed either as a ratio or percentage. This metric helps track the profitability of your advertising efforts.
  • Factors Influencing a Good ROAS: A “good” ROAS is influenced by your business type, industry, and the advertising channels used. Generally, a 3:1 ROAS (earning three dollars for every dollar spent) is considered effective, whereas a 1:1 ROAS or lower is seen as less desirable.
  • Contextualizing ROAS Success: A high ROAS alone doesn’t guarantee overall campaign success. Even with high advertising spend and moderate sales, a campaign can be successful in terms of engagement or reaching other strategic goals despite a lower ROAS.

What Is A Good Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) For Facebook Ads?

You should keep in mind that a good return on ad for Facebook Ads depends on the objectives and goals of your business. Generally, an ROAS of 3:1 is considered a good benchmark for Facebook Ads, meaning your business secures a $3 return for every $1 spent.

You can better track & monitor the ROAS of your Facebook ads once you utilize Facebook pixel and conversion tracking. This provides valuable data to evaluate the performance of the ads and the overall impact of Facebook advertising on your business.

While it’s clear that every business might have a different set of objectives and ROAS expectations, it would be wise for you to target an ROAS that’s at least twice your original investment. That’s to say, if you spend $200 on Facebook ads, you should target a $400 return at least.

What Is A Good Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) For Google Ads?

The ideal ROAS for Google Ads varies by several factors including industry, product or service type, and target audience. Generally, achieving a ROAS between 3:1 and 5:1—earning $3 to $5 for every advertising dollar spent—is considered effective.

  • Business Specifics: The nature of your business significantly influences what constitutes a good ROAS. High-end luxury brands may see a lower ROAS due to their product pricing, whereas businesses with more affordable offerings might achieve a higher ROAS.
  • Business Goals: A company’s objectives also impact the desired ROAS. For instance, businesses focusing on lead generation may find a lower ROAS acceptable compared to those aiming for direct sales.

Key Takeaway: There’s no one-size-fits-all ROAS for Google Ads; it depends on individual business metrics and goals. Continuous campaign analysis and optimization are crucial for maintaining an effective advertising strategy that meets your specific return objectives.

What Is A Good Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) For Amazon?

The ideal ROAS on Amazon varies based on product type and competition level. Generally, a 2:1 ROAS, where ad spend is twice the sales value, is considered good. However, this benchmark may shift higher or lower depending on specific factors such as:

  • Product Type and Price: High-ticket items like laptops may reach a ROAS of 3:1 or more with targeted campaigns, whereas more competitively priced, lower-cost items might see a realistic ROAS around 1.5:1.
  • Competition: The intensity of marketplace competition affects achievable ROAS, with niche products possibly yielding higher returns compared to those in saturated categories.

Strategy for Success: The key to a strong ROAS on Amazon involves experimentation and optimization. By testing various strategies and creative approaches, you can identify what works best for your product line, gradually improving your campaigns to maximize ROAS.

What Is A Good Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) For Etsy?

Determining a good ROAS for Etsy involves assessing several factors including product type, target audience, and the chosen advertising medium. A general benchmark for Etsy is achieving a ROAS of at least 2:1, indicating that each dollar spent on advertising generates a minimum of two dollars in revenue.

Key Considerations for Etsy Sellers:

  • Lifetime Customer Value: Beyond immediate sales, consider the long-term value of customers acquired through ads, including their future purchases.
  • Customer Acquisition Cost: Factor in the cost of acquiring a new customer and the revenue from referrals to assess the true effectiveness of your advertising spend.

By incorporating these considerations, Etsy sellers can better navigate their advertising strategies to ensure a profitable use of their budget.

How Is Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) Used In Mobile Marketing?

When it comes to mobile marketing, ROAS is a great way to measure the success of a campaign. It allows you to assess the performance of the campaigns and determine whether or not you are on the right track, getting the most out of your ad spend.

For example, you can calculate a minimum ROAS prior to launching any campaign in order to quickly determine if the performance is within an acceptable range. Also, you can use it to compare results from different campaigns to understand which ones perform better.

By understanding the ROAS of your campaigns, you can adjust your strategies and methods to maximize your return on investment (ROI). This can help you a great deal, especially when it comes to optimizing campaigns for different mobile platforms and devices.

5 Ways To Improve Return On Ad Spend (ROAS)

You know that running ad campaigns is essential for your business’ success. However, it’s not enough just to run campaigns; you should also make sure that your campaigns are optimized to improve your ROAS and get the best return from your ad spend.

Here is a list of 5 ways to improve your ROAS:

  1. Accurate ROAS Calculation: Ensure you’re correctly applying the ROAS formula, using accurate data for both costs and revenue. Regularly review this data to accurately reflect business performance.
  2. Continuous Evaluation and Adjustment: Monitor the effectiveness of your strategies, ad visuals, and channels. Adjust or discontinue campaigns based on their ROAS performance to optimize outcomes.
  3. Use Predictive Analytics: Employ analytics to understand early funnel activities and their impact on revenue. This insight allows for targeted ad campaigns, reducing unnecessary spend and maximizing potential revenue.
  4. Re-engage Inactive Users: Implement strategies to increase customer loyalty and reduce acquisition costs. Using owned channels for this can be particularly cost-effective.
  5. Optimize Advertising Spend: Regularly review and refine your keyword strategy to remove underperforming keywords and add new, cost-effective ones. Use features like location targeting to make your ad spend more effective.

By applying these strategies, businesses can significantly improve their ROAS, ensuring that every dollar spent on advertising contributes to profitable growth.


In summary, return on ad spend (ROAS) can be an incredibly useful metric for you to evaluate the success of your ad campaigns. It allows you to track the performance of your marketing efforts and adjust your strategies accordingly.

While it is not the only metric to consider, understanding ROAS and incorporating it into your marketing strategies can help you to maximize your return on investment and ensure that your campaigns are efficient and effective.