Importing GA conversions in AdWords offers several advantages to SEMs. Setting Google Analytics goals once means not having to do double the work when configuring conversions — and, maybe most importantly, no additional conversion pixels to worry about advertisers accidentally removing from their site.
Historically, the only downside of relying solely on GA conversions in AdWords was the excessive delay in reporting; currently, the maximum waiting time for GA conversions to import is 48 hours. This can cause issues in not only preparing reports for clients, but it making optimization decisions based on recent data as well.
Happily, Google announced today on G+ that over the next few weeks (as Google is never one to be too specific about dates), the time-lag for GA conversions to import into AdWords will be cut down by nearly 40 hours — with the max weight time dropping to 9 hrs.
Personally, I prefer to use Google Analytics conversions goals over Adwords pixels. However, historically, when optimizing based on recent performance — we’ll use the last two weeks as an example — I’ve always had to use the Custom Date feature to exclude the previous 2 days’ performance. With only a 9 hour time differential, theoretically, by the time I start work in the morning, most (if not all) of the previous days’ conversions will already have been accounted for in AdWords.
For more information on utilizing GA goals in AdWords, you can check out the Google support article here.