If you haven’t heard by now, Google’s Marketing Next keynote (also embedded below) last week announced a barrage of new tools that online marketers are pretty excited about. While many promising new features were discussed, here are the two we were most glad to see coming down the pike.
Improving Attribution Metrics
If you’re not familiar with the term, attribution means giving proper credit to the channel that actually brought in the customer. Aside from proper recordkeeping, it’s of the utmost importance in being able to tell what’s working and what isn’t, so that a marketer can direct more funds to the sources that are leading to more conversions.
But with users these days constantly switching devices and potentially arriving at a website from a variety of different sources, attribution has been an ongoing challenge for marketers. Until now, Google Analytics has had a couple of different attribution metrics that left something to be desired—basically, attribution could be given either to the very first channel or to the last. For obvious reasons, this didn’t give marketers a full view of the entire, multi-interaction experience the typical customer goes through before making a purchase.
The newly announced Google Attribution attempts to solve this problem by more thoroughly tracking how users are arriving on the site and which interaction actually accounts for their conversion. For instance, if a user first clicks on a paid ad to arrive at your site, but then a few days later does a Google search for your company name, Google’s new model would split the attribution credit between the two (based on your settings), and give, for example, 60% credit to the paid ad for the initial discovery, but 40% to the organic search for the ultimate conversion.
Google Attribution’s new level of flexibility will give marketers more and better info about how users are interacting with their website and how purchase decisions are made.
In-Market Audiences for Search and Shopping
Already available for the Display Network and YouTube, In-Market audiences will now also be available for Google’s Search ads and Shopping listings. This gives AdWords marketers a whole new array of audience information to take advantage of. Instead of simply showing an ad based on what the user searched for in that moment, Google can now take that user’s previous search and browsing history into account in order to show the most helpful ads possible.
Google is also getting smarter about consumer patterns, with something they’re calling Life Events. This technology will be able to use the search patterns of a customer to accurately determine when he or she reaches certain key life events such as graduation, marriage, a move to a new city, etc.(which, not coincidentally, are usually linked with major purchases as well). This information will create new audience segments that marketers can use specifically based on these major life events.