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Choosing an Online Conversion Tracking Solution

Choosing an Online Conversion Tracking Solution

Digital marketing tools have come a very long way in recent years. While people in the industry are well aware of them, most businesses are left in the dark as to what they should look for when choosing technology to aid their online marketing endeavours.

Some tools focus on conversion tracking while some tools go one step further and do both conversion tracking and digital marketing optimisation.

This post, the first in a series about digital marketing optimisation, will help you understand what makes a good conversion tracking tool. Knowing what you need will help you make better decisions when faced with the choice of technology on which your business will rely.

There is a range of tools that can help you measure your marketing spend and the revenue, conversions or goals generated from that spend. All claim to do a fantastic job and contribute to improving your return on advertising spend (ROAS). So how does one chose?

While your final choice may depend on many factors, below are the key features that you should expect, and why.

Non-disruptive tracking

For a third-party company to track your website traffic, sources, spend and revenue they need to collect data at various points along the process. The best tools will collect this data in ways that do not affect the experience of visitors to your site or those clicking on your ads.

Click redirection is a great example of disruptive tracking. Click redirection occurs when someone clicks your ad, is taken to a URL owned by the technology provider who then captures the users info, and then forwards the user to your website.

Even in the best case scenario, this means that the user will see a blank page for a split second, followed by the address bar changing to your site and then finally landing on your landing page.

But what happens if their server is down? Or if they’re busy serving someone else’s ads or clicks? Your potential customers may never even reach your site because the redirect didn’t work or took too long. Your conversion tracking will count it as a click, which means you’re paying your provider and losing potential business at the same time!

Track humans, not devices

While this is a relatively new concept in digital marketing optimisation, it is vital that your tools have technologies and processes in place to track people, not just web browsers or devices.

The key aim of conversion tracking is to try to understand and interpret human behaviour to improve your marketing efforts. If your tools are not able to record what your visitors are doing across their various browsers and devices, then they do not know the whole story.

Cross-channel attribution

Similar to cross browser and device tracking, it is important that your conversion tracking tool can track and measure each step that your visitors go on their journey of discovery through to becoming your customer.

Many solutions use first-click or last-click attribution, which attributes 100% of the conversion value to the first or the last click that resulted in it. While this may be simple, it rarely conveys the real value that each of your marketing channels has contributed to the sale.

For example, a user first visits through a banner ad, then visits again after seeing a post on social media and signs up for a newsletter. Following an email marketing campaign, the user clicks an email link to your website and makes a purchase. With last-click attribution 100% of the conversion to the ’email campaign’.

Cross-channel attribution will allow you to assign a value to the first interaction, the last interaction and everything in-between. Using cross-channel attribution gives you a more accurate picture of your various campaigns performance and the value they are delivering to your business.

One last thing..
While not exactly a feature, the most important thing to look for when considering a conversion tracking tool is respect!

When you implement a conversion tracking solution, it captures a large amount of data about your business, your website and your customers. It’s important to be sure that they are treating that data and your company data with care and respect.

You should be worried if a marketing solution does any of the following:

  • captures and stores identifiable data on your users and customers
  • uses 3rd party cookies
  • sells your data to others (or tries to sell data to you)

To sum up
Choosing a solution to help you monitor and evaluate your marketing campaigns is not easy but by looking for a few key features you will be able to separate the leading technologies from the rest.

Make sure your conversion tracking tool:

  • uses non-disruptive tracking methods
  • can track people across various browsers and devices
  • attributes conversions to all channels that led to the conversion, not just the first or last click
  • respects your private data and the data of your website visitors and customers

If you are looking for a digital marketing optimisation solution that ticks all the right boxes and has a track record of achieving results, get in touch with us or Find me on Twitter @nathan5ri. Try our AdWords Audit.