The Internet Marketing Driver: Glenn Gabe's goal is to help marketers build powerful and measurable web marketing strategies.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

The Coremetrics Spring Release – Attributing Credit for a Sale Just Got Interesting

Coremetrics Spring Release and Marketing Campaign Attribution Logic
For those of you who utilize robust web analytics programs to track your online marketing efforts, last click attribution is probably a familiar term. It’s also sometimes a frustrating one... Last Click Attribution means that your web analytics program (Coremetrics, Omniture, Google Analytics, etc.) will attribute sales to the last marketing program clicked. For the most part, it’s a standard in the industry to use Last Click Attribution. That said, there are many scenarios that cause Last Click to inaccurately attribute sales data, which makes the life of a web marketing person a little frustrating.

Here’s a quick example:
John clicks through a paid search advertisement that has been tagged as a marketing campaign (this means that the web analytics package will automatically track the click as a campaign for you in the reporting application.) John visits the site and signs up for email alerts, but does not buy anything. Two days later, John receives an email that has also been tagged as a marketing campaign and he clicks through to the site. John ends up buying $125 in products. Here’s the problem. The web analytics program will attribute $125 to email and not Paid Search. That’s great for the email marketing manager and frustrating for the Search Marketing Manager (that’s if the Search Marketing Manager even finds out at all…) This is obviously not an optimal situation for tracking your campaigns.

Coremetrics to the Rescue! The Spring Update to be Exact…
As part of the Coremetrics Spring Update, there have been some outstanding marketing enhancements built into the application. For example, the enhancements to Attribution Logic are phenomenal. You can now track Last Click, First Click, Average Click, and All Clicks. I actually called CM Support and thanked them personally for adding this functionality. I’m not kidding. Yes, they thought I was a little weird, but heck, adding these attribute types will make my life a lot easier and give me accurate sales data across marketing channels. I cannot wait to see it in action (which should be very soon, given we are upgrading as I write this)…

Let’s Clarify the Coremetrics Attribution Types:
First Click Attribution
– CM will attribute credit for a conversion to the first marketing campaign clicked. So in my previous example, we would see that Paid Search was the starting point for the sale.

Last Click Attribution – this was explained earlier, but CM will attribute credit for the conversion to the last marketing campaign clicked.

Average Across Touches – CM will attribute credit equally to all marketing campaigns that were part of the sales process. So, if someone clicks through Paid Search, then clicks through an email, and then finally clicks through an RSS feed listing, all three will receive credit. That’s powerful!

All Touches Attribution – Similar to Average Click, other than CM will attribute credit to all marketing campaigns that were part of the process (in full).

In addition to the marketing enhancements listed above, Coremetrics also added attribution logic to Natural Search and Referring Sites. I will now have access to the same metrics that are available for marketing campaigns, such as Sales, Last Click 30 Days. It was frustrating not to have these metrics in the past, but being able to set a timeframe and view sales that occurred from an organic search click 2 weeks ago is powerful stuff. I’m now looking at the past 10 days of natural search traffic and it generated $183,000 more than what was being reported prior to the upgrade. This is mostly due to the ability to view sales that were attributed to a click from natural search over the past 30 days (i.e. last click 30 days attribution). This wasn’t present until the upgrade. I’m really liking Coremetrics right now…maybe I should call support again to thank them?? Maybe not…they’ll probably think I’m really troubled at this point! :-)

I plan to post more about the upgrade in the upcoming months as we apply the Coremetrics marketing enhancements to our online marketing reporting.

So by all means, hug a Coremetrics employee the next time you meet one. Tell them Glenn said hi! :-)

Disclaimer: Glenn Gabe of G-Squared Interactive cannot be held liable for any physical injury that occurs from the result of hugging Coremetrics employees. This includes bear hugs, home hugs, thank you hugs, hug it out hugs, and any other type of hug as interpreted by laws of the state of New Jersey. ;-)

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  • At 11:21 AM, Anonymous Daisy said…

    Hi Glenn. Thanks so much for the insightful post! I am just doing some research on this. It is really helpful. Really appreciate if you could share more about how Google Analytics or Omniture could help to do this.


  • At 8:42 AM, Blogger Glenn Gabe said…

    Hi Daisy.

    I'm glad this post was helpful! In my experience, viewing sales attribution across marketing channels (and timeframe) has been an important element to analyzing my campaigns. It's eye-opening to view first click, last click, and average click sales say the least! It really helps you get a rounded picture of what’s going on…

    I plan to write more about this subject in future posts, so stay tuned.



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