Attribution Across the Path to Purchase

Collective Measures
May 10, 2013
Understanding the path to purchase and the consumer journey by determining what works to generate leads, acquisitions, and purchases.

Attributing the Consumer Journey

The Consumer Journey is a hot topic in our cross-platform, digital marketing world. Understanding how consumers move throughout the path to purchase is a necessity for the digital marketer. Between awareness, consideration, intent to buy, and actual purchase, we sure don’t have an easy task in learning how our media channels work with one another! Beyond that, we also need to know what gets consumers to re-engage and become brand loyalists. As we learned at a recent Nina Hale educational event, tracking and attributing conversions across the path to purchase is something many companies struggle with.

Google’s Think Insights recently released a new tool that uses anonymized data from its Google Analytics accounts to set benchmarks for assisting and last interaction conversions across industries. It examines the roles that media channels play in encouraging a consumer to buy. “Assisting Interaction” channels are more helpful as awareness vehicles, while “Last Interaction” channels more directly influence a purchase. Using the ratio of “Assist/Last Interactions,” we can plot tactics along our journey to determine whether they drive awareness or conversion.

We played around with the data a bit and plotted our own clients’ data along Google’s benchmarked journey. You can do this yourself by pulling the “Assist/Last Interaction” ratio from your Google Analytics Assisted Conversions report (under Conversions -> Multi-Channel Funnels -> Assisted Conversions) and comparing it to the journey mapped in the Think Insights tool. It gave us a lot of insight into how our marketing activities currently work toward driving acquisitions and purchases. We also learned a lot about how we might change our media strategy in order to target consumers at specific points throughout his or her journey.

How does your attribution model relate to the consumer journey? Have you been surprised by your data versus Google’s benchmarks? Let us know.

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