Proper user behavioral analysis includes understanding the ads that a user has viewed (media attribution) as well as the user's interaction on a marketer's web site. Too few marketers have implemented cross-channel media attribution. Even fewer can tie together attribution with user behavior online. The upside for marketers who can do both is huge.
How can this combination help paid search marketers?
1. While attribution lets you see where keywords fit in the funnel and how they may interact with each other (and with other channels), understanding user behavior at the keyword level helps you understand a user's propensity to buy and what items they're interested in. This, in turn, can help you come up with the right creative messaging for different keywords.
2. Similarly, having greater insight into what people are interested in -- and whether they purchased or not -- can tell you a great deal about your landing pages. It's one thing to know certain landing pages have low conversion rates. Imagine if you knew that, while people who come to that page don't buy, user intent was high. What can you glean about your landing page or page flow on your site?
3. This can also help you understand where you may be leaving money on the table, even among users who actually convert. Imagine the sales person who sees a customer walk in and buy a pair of socks but knows, from having watched the customer browse the store, that they were really interested in an expensive suit. In the online world, we show content knowing that someone bought socks. Would the store employee feel the same, or would they engage the client about the suit? Whether you use this to dynamically change content or landing pages, or simply to remarket to someone, having this information is vital to maximizing your return per visitor and not just settling for "they bought something." Wisdom of the masses -- knowing that people who bought these socks also tended to buy this belt -- is great. But wisdom of the individual -- knowing what the user is truly interested in buying -- is far more powerful.
Start understanding user behavior today. Determine what tools you already have in place that can help you learn more about your audience and what additional tools or services may be needed. Once you have this data, use it to help drive your keyword expansion and creative optimization strategy. There is tremendous potential for those who do this well. We know we have a blind spot. For too long, we've just been OK with that. We now have the ability to eliminate it.