Google AdWords Enhances Estimated Total Conversions with “Store Visits” Metric
The increasing amount of time we spend online isn’t just changing the way we work and communicate, but also the way we research and purchase products and services.
Google understands this reality, and has unveiled a new metric for its AdWords platform that will help business owners understand the online-offline impact of their search ads. According to a blog post dated December 18, 2014, the new “store visits” metric was developed after Google looked at various trends in customer shopping over the holidays.
They observed that while sales still take place mostly in physical stores, online activities—such as viewing search ads—are influencing the purchase decisions of consumers. Hence, Google wants businesses to understand “the impact that search ads have in driving visits to [their] physical locations.” The store visits metric serves as an enhancement to Google AdWords’ Estimated Total Conversions (ETC), which was introduced in 2013.
The new metric considers the constantly connected environment people are living in. According to Google, the majority of users look for location information and product availability whenever they make use of certain ad features, like the direction finder and call button. By gaining better insight into these new, intricate purchase paths, businesses can “optimize [their] online marketing programs, design better experiences for [their] customers and allocate budget more effectively.”
As demonstrated in Figure 1 above, PetSmart (America’s largest retailer of pet supplies), based on the insight that 10-18% of search ad clicks turn into store visits, began investing in more ads that would reach customers’ screens. These include the use of location extensions, to show maps and directions to customers looking for nearby stores where they can purchase pet supplies.
Office Depot has also been using insights from store visits data to see what products are driving sales in each of their branches nationwide. [See Figure 2 below] Such data would help Office Depot deploy more targeted local inventory ads in particular areas. “These ads show whether or not a product is available in a nearby store and where the nearest store is located. This makes it simple for customers to discover what products are in stock as they’re shopping and researching online.”
With location information being a central part of the new metric, Google also assures users that store visits have “been carefully designed to keep data private and secure.”
Will store visits data greatly impact your online advertising campaigns?
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