Poor tracking is the death of any digital marketing campaign before it even begins. It’s like if you went on a fishing trip, set up your lines with bait, dropped them in the water, and then just let them sit without even checking for a bite. Not only is this costly, but it’s practically illogical. However, this is one of the most common mistakes businesses make in setting up AdWords and PPC campaigns.
Don’t get me wrong; I don’t blame companies for not setting up tracking. For some, AdWords, SEO, and PPC are terms they hear and think “I need to do that too.” And for the most part, that’s a correct notion- in this day and age, everyone should consider these strategies to be successful, as poor tracking can be a costly mistake and one that could make your efforts fruitless.
Setting The Foundation
Perhaps one of the biggest things I’ve seen in the “dive right in” approach is these common misconceptions about how to accurately target online. Even when it comes to AdWords call tracking, people have all these notions about what works and what doesn’t without fully realizing the bigger picture. Believe it or not, a lot of the strategies that people either overlook or think aren’t effective because they’re “in your face” can be some of the most successful. However, without proper conversion tracking, they never see why.
It’s known that conversion tracking is one of the only ways to see if you’re really getting a return on your digital advertising efforts. What this entails is having a full pipeline for your customers to enter and exit, with an end goal usually detailed as a CTA (Call-To-Action).
Starting out, your search terms should be curtailed to specific things your business does over your competitors. For example, if I’m a bakery owner in an up-and-coming neighborhood, and my shop is also the only place to get coffee, then it’d be advantageous to test the terms “(Neighborhood)+ coffee” rather than “City+coffee” or “bakery+city.” The reason being is that you’re trying to tone down what it is that separates you from the others rather than just gaining visibility.
While this strategy is perfect for the example above, part of being successful in this area is also building out the engagement for your site as well. A huge mistake a lot of people make with their PPC strategies is linking their homepage, which leaves visitors lost or confused because the homepage does often not contain the information they originally sought. Additionally, having a call-to-action (I.E.: A signup, request for an appointment, etc.) is also imperative as it’s the biggest cursor to defining success.
Solidifying Things in Stone
One of the best examples we’ve seen of setting up excellent tracking for conversion was our work with Art Stone, a granite, and marble business located in Smyrna, Georgia. While they worked with another agency in the past on their AdWords efforts, they lacked a system that offered complete tracking, as well as optimization strategies.
Starting out, we looked at their current model and noticed a few issues. First, they didn’t have a way to track phone calls and form submissions to their site. Second, they drastically needed to bring down their cost per acquisition to at least under $100. And third, Art Stone had a tough time staying ahead of the competition online.
One of the first things we did was focus in their search terms using a geocentric approach specific to their metro area. As granite and marble are usually expensive to ship/travel further to obtain in person, setting a defined radius enabled Art Stone to hone in on a better audience. Additionally, we also established a full-circle tracking program that worked with improving the copy on their site and integrating their sources of conversion. Coupled with highlighting the specialty services they offered, we were able to propel Art Stone past their competition, with an increased conversion rate of 63% as well as increasing their ROI per click.
In order to have a successful digital marketing campaign and increased conversions, your tracking mechanisms have to be as specific as possible. As we saw with Art Stone (as well as numerous other clients), tracking it’s one of the most crucial determinants of success but is often overlooked. Finally, if you’d like to learn more about our work with Art Stone, I highly encourage you to check out our case study below.