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Attribution in a Cross-Channel Campaign

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

All,

 

This may sound cliche but I have been working with a Client who runs a cross-channel Campaign using PPC, Affiliate as Paid Media and obviously also gets a lot of direct traffic and from organic search

 

The Client's account is being handled by an 'AdWords Certified Expert' who simply copies conversions/revenue from AdWords and claims that to be the actual revenue made by the Client. Same is done by the Affiliate guys who simply pull out stats from their Affiliate Tracking system and claim all the credit for that revenue

 

Now obviously Google Analytics takes a different approach and shows data based on last click attribution which is why the Client almost conks out in disbelief everytime I share results with him. The AdWords/Affiliate guys are of course oblivious to the realities of Campaign Attribution so do not seem to 'get it'

 

My question is what approaches have you guys used in your practice to put across the message to clients in a palatable way? No one wants to pay for a proper Attribution Modelling approach using Analytics but they all want stats that would keep them happy.

 

Any thoughts?

 

Thanks,

Re: Attribution in a Cross-Channel Campaign

Collaborator ✭ ☆ ☆
# 2
Collaborator ✭ ☆ ☆

Wow Very Nice Post. I love it

Attributing conversion has always been a big debate across all web analytics software. 

Here are some attribution models 

1. Adwords attribution will give credit of conversion to adwords for 30 days from the click irrespective of other channels

 

2. Analytics by default will give conversion to last non direct source. This can be modified by using utm_nooverride.

 

I think very first thing you have to decide is first click or last click attribution, basically you have to decide depending on your business and product weather you want to give credit of conversion to the source from which user arrived 1st or to the source from which user arrived last.

 

There is not simple answer to this, but to help you decide this you can look at multi-channel funnels (I am hopping your affiliates land traffic on your website and their links are tagged with utm parameters). With multichannel funnels you can check which sources are overlapping each other and depending on that you can decide which source is more important for you. 

 

At the same time I must caution you that you should not expect different tracking systems to give you exactly matching data. Thats just not going to happen as every system uses different mechanism to track the conversions.

I think good place to start will me multi-channel funnels and then deciding on conversion model for 1st or last click. 

 

Any way best of luck explaining this to your affiliates: smileyhappy:

I would love to know what others think about attibution models. 

 

Regards, Nik
LinkedIn  |   @nikhilparachure | My Blog

Re: Attribution in a Cross-Channel Campaign

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi,

 

Thanks for your quick reply

 

I think we will all agree as Analytics Practitioners that when we see different data in different systems (e.g. AdWords, Affiliate Tracking etc.) that it is not that they are showing wrong data but really up to you what you make of that data. Correct?

 

So here are some specific questions

 

1) I guess my question was more around what practical strategies do Analysts like us use in 'educating' the Client and 'AdWords Certified Experts' that you can not just copy and past conversion data from AdWords and call it Revenue.

 

2) Same with Affiliate guys?

 

3) The Client in this particular situation is - as we can put it politely - not exactly literate about how Attribution works. He simply adds data from AdWords, Affiliate etc. and then thinks that his marketing is making him a lot of money. No regard for what those numbers mean, duplication, Attribution etc.

 

Anything specific that you guys can recommend for such amateurish marketers (mind you I encounter many such numerically ignorant cases on a routine basis) so I am trying to figure out what best approach to take in such scenarios

 

Cheers

 

Re: Attribution in a Cross-Channel Campaign

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 4
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Also,

 

just to make this a bit more contextual, here is a link to the video that was shown to my by the 'AdWords Certified Expert'. It is obviously full of naive (perhaps even ignorant?) observations with respect to cross-channel attribution but I wanted to share it with all to put some context -

 

http://www.screencast.com/t/sx0t2tGcaM

 

Any rebuttals/comments?

 

 

 

Thanks,

Re: Attribution in a Cross-Channel Campaign

Collaborator ✭ ☆ ☆
# 5
Collaborator ✭ ☆ ☆

HI

Before I start I would suggest you most important thing, Please remove that screencast, it exposes lot of details about your business and your adword account and other channels.

Now about your questions

1) I guess my question was more around what practical strategies do Analysts like us use in 'educating' the Client and 'AdWords Certified Experts' that you can not just copy and past conversion data from AdWords and call it Revenue. : You cant stop adwords guy from copy pasting conversion data from adwrods because for him thats the only way to get conversion data (assuming he is not handling your analytics). Let him report from adwords, its the client who needss to be educated

 

2) Same with Affiliate guys?: They will never agree with any other tracking system unless it gives them more commission Smiley Happy

 

3) The Client in this particular situation is - as we can put it politely - not exactly literate about how Attribution works. He simply adds data from AdWords, Affiliate etc. and then thinks that his marketing is making him a lot of money. No regard for what those numbers mean, duplication, Attribution etc.

 I believe you have to educate client about 1st click and last click scenarios. You also have to make him understand that adding up all these numbers will inflate your figures by 20 ot 30 % (not sure exact percentage just taking general number).

There are 2 parts to int

 

1 actual revenue which you can get from google analytics if you have ecom setup or the bank account Smiley Happy safest way to measure the revenue.

2. Attribution: I believe it will be impossible for affiliates to understand anything that makes their commissions less. About your adwords guy, it really is not a big deal as long as he is not charging commission on revenue. 

Most important is you have to pull out report from analytics which gives real picture to your client and show him the actual attribution vs attribution claimed by affiliates and adwords

Most imp: the diffrence in adwords conversions and one in your report is huge which makes me think there is something wrong with tracking.

Hope this helps

 

Regards, Nik
LinkedIn  |   @nikhilparachure | My Blog

Re: Attribution in a Cross-Channel Campaign

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hey Nik,

 

Thanks for the reply!

 

Some points

 

1) The problem is that the AdWords guys ARE charging based on revenue made! In fact they had even inflated the actual revenue by adding shipping cost in the AdWords Conversion value. I am sure this was not deliberate but certainly ignorant

 

2) The Client is quite typical in being ignorant about numbers. The simply look at the overall numbers and think that the total revenue is sum of revenue from all the channels. You are right, the actual figures are WAY over what they actuall make.

 

3) My question was if there is a way for us to include the Order Id on Adwords Conversion page as some kind of a user defined variable? Then perhaps we will also know the order ID for each conversion and that will be indisputable information if we see multiple channels taking credit for the same order?

 

Thanks again! Also I do not think there is anything too secret about the videocast - it is mostly instructional - and tells us about the general literacy levels of online marketing in that team. But happy to remove. How do I do that?

 

Cheers

 

Re: Attribution in a Cross-Channel Campaign

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 7
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Also Nik, the very reason I posted the video was so there is context

 

To your point about the huge difference between AdWords and Analytics data, the figures in the analytics data is only for PPC and Affiliate conversions - it does not include other channels - email, direct etc.

 

We agreed with the client that we should first nail down PPC/Affiliate hence the apples to apples comparison!

 

Cheers