So why does this make me mad besides increasing workload?
As I've said before in this blog...
Clicks = Cost
There is no direct correlation between clicks and conversions or ROI. At the end of the day, it's about making money from the clicks, not just getting the clicks. Clicks are great for Google because they don't make money unless someone clicks. The more clicks Google can drive, the more money Google makes.
So why all this hating on clicks?
Consider a price point ad. We use these to filter out visitors who are probably not going to be interested in a product based on the price the product is offered. In other words, a hotel may have an ad that says "From $199/night" being tested against one that says "Great Online Rates." The "Great Online Rates" ad will likely get more clicks, but the "From $199/night" ad will probably have a higher conversion rate since the guest already knows what price to expect after they click. What we look for is the overall value of the two against each other which cannot be determined from clicks alone. Does the "Online Rates" ad make up for the lower conversion rate in higher volume? Does the "$199" ad perform better at certain times of day or on certain days? How about in different markets? There are so many questions to be answered that go beyond just clicks.
This is a common issue with a lot of marketers and it saddens me to see Google falling into the trap. So many look only at one metric to try to determine effectiveness. Once you start peeling the layers of the onion you may be really surprised by what you find.