4 min read

Using Offline Conversion Tracking to Improve Attribution

Today's shoppers use multiple modes and platforms to research products, engage with brands, pursue entertainment, and, ultimately, buy products. When companies can't keep up with their target market's behaviors through offline conversion tracking, they don't know which ads triggered the purchase decision or resonate most with their different buyer demographics.

Advertisements might become repetitive, uncustomized, and uninspiring. You also lose insight into how your viewers interact with different ads and touchpoints over their entire buyer's journey aside from when they step into your brick-and-mortar store to make a purchase. Business2Community sums up the importance of offline tracking succinctly:

By tracking your offline conversions, you understand which ads generate more sales. You can scale your campaigns with this information. This is particularly important if your campaigns promote products that you can sell offline, such as physical goods like cars, houses, consultations, etc.

Simply put, it's time to make offline conversion tracking a more vital part of your approach to ad attribution and marketing attribution.

This article will explore how tracking leads to more accurate attribution and how you can best implement the information you discover.

WHAT IS OFFLINE CONVERSION TRACKING?

Marketers want to track how viewers engage with ads, but it's just as important to know what shoppers do after interacting with an ad. 

After all, shoppers might not immediately buy your products after seeing an OTT/CTV ad. Likewise, they might not buy your product after walking past your store, but they might purchase after walking past your store if they've seen your ad in the past.

That uncertainty regarding what customers are and aren't doing — and which of your marketing strategies drove them toward a purchase — can be a financial liability. You can't attribute certain sales to different campaigns, let alone begin to calculate your return on ad spend (ROAS). 

That's where offline conversion tracking comes in. Our attribution technology can work backward from the moment a customer makes a purchase. By identifying detailed elements of the shopper's journey, you can learn which ads were decisive factors in a shopper's buying decision and which ones were less effective.

Online conversion tracking technology helps you and your marketing team understand shoppers' paths from digital ad views to digital purchases. But it neglects all of the context surrounding when and why shoppers enter your stores in person.

Ultimately, offline conversion tracking helps fill in the gaps, so you have a better understanding of how each of your ads — and different combinations of ad views over time — influence buying decisions. In addition, you don't have to guess or engage in long-term experiments to get your answers.

OFFLINE CONVERSION TRACKING AND ACCURATE ATTRIBUTION

You can use the additional insights of offline conversion tracking to pursue these goals:

  • Identify the ads that are most impactful for getting more in-store visits
  • See how different ads work together to strengthen your brand presence
  • Be able to discard or modify ads that are providing sub-optimal engagements and conversions

Consider this example:

You have an omnichannel marketing campaign, which includes OTT/CTV advertisements that reach viewers as they're watching a streaming TV program. As a result, viewers are interested in the product, encouraging them to search for your site while watching their program. 

As they continue to explore your products online, they become more and more convinced that they want to purchase. However, they'd still rather see it in person instead of buying it online.

Maybe it's an item they want right away instead of waiting two or three days for shipping. Perhaps, it's clothing or another purchase that readers want to touch and try before buying. No matter their hesitation, they decide to call the closest store and ask if the store has it in stock before driving over.

Once they reach your store, they hold the product, decide it's perfect, and buy it immediately.

This is good news, but which touchpoint is responsible for the sale?

If you only have access to basic analytics, it seems like the customer just made an in-store purchase and your digital ads had nothing to do with it. On the other hand, if you have a small store, your in-store team might recognize the shopper's voice and be able to attribute it to the phone call.

Both scenarios leave the impact of the digital ad unrecognized, potentially causing you to pull the ad and devote the spending to something else. But if you didn't have the ad, you might never have reached that customer at all.

Offline conversion tracking allows you to identify the role digital ads have in persuading shoppers to move through the buyer's journey, whether calling the store, visiting the store, or making a final decision purchase.

Attributing the sale to that digital ads means you know to scale up that campaign and capture more shoppers interested in similar products. You also understand that future ad campaigns should continue to include the OTT/CTV component in your omnichannel strategy. Finally, you have the data to back up that decision and justify the expenses. 

PARTNER WITH STRATEGUS FOR OFFLINE CONVERSION TRACKING 

Offline conversion tracking is impossible without having the right technology available. At Strategus, we create attribution solutions to track and analyze buyer behaviors and visitor engagements with every component of your ad campaigns.

You'll have clear insight into which ads contribute to interest, which ads strengthen your brand, and which ads lead directly or indirectly to a purchase. Contact us today to learn more about our Attribution Suite's capabilities, or browse our blog for more marketing insights.

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