Attribution Requires Marketers To Understand Display Ad Impact

Drilling into media paths to determine what drives consumers to purchase is key to improving efficiencies in cross-channel marketing and advertising. For both retail and travel industries, multichannel conversion paths that lead with display advertising tend to convert consumers to buyers the most rapidly -- but determining the correct type of display ad can become a challenge, according to a study released Tuesday.

It's also unclear to marketers where in the path to put video, retargeting, mobile and search.

The IgnitionOne Travel and Retail 2012 study explains ways to reduce conversion times simply by rearranging media in the purchase funnel. Media such as retargeting can increase higher average order values (AOVs) in purchases, but could take longer for consumers to go from ad to purchase.

Display works best for retail when the media appears early in the conversion path. Display ads drive a 29% higher AOV than other single-channel paths. Combined with search channels -- both paid and organic -- it drives a 16% higher AOV when at the top of the path, and converts consumers 43% faster than other multichannel paths.

The order in which the media leads the consumer to make a purchase matters too.

Attribution models require marketers to understand how media channels interact and assist with conversions. For example, how do display ads and paid-search ads drive higher AOV orders when display sits at the end of the conversion path? This same scenario can convert consumers more quickly when paid search sits at the beginning of the funnel path.

Display advertising can support travel marketers too, but the media becomes a more successful tool as part of a multichannel path. The report explains that clicks from display advertising achieve 20% higher AOV and 38% more purchases when it is the last exposure of a multichannel path, compared with being the only channel in the conversion funnel.

"It works very well following paid search, resulting in a 28% higher AOV, compared to display-only paths," according to the report. "These users are also 72% more likely to purchase again, compared to display-only paths, and 52% more likely to purchase again, compared to paid-search-only paths."

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1 comment about "Attribution Requires Marketers To Understand Display Ad Impact".
  1. Domenico Tassone from Viewthrough Measurement Consortium , July 21, 2012 at 12:22 p.m.
    The fact is that display media is a complex channel and it continues to get more and more complex with RTB and ad verification technologies now commercially available. Understanding its full impact requires more work than what basic ad server and site analytics tools can easily report. After several months of using a fractional attribution platform, I've developed a handy cheat sheet for digital marketers: http://goo.gl/dRmCq