Innovative Methods to Measure Online to Offline Conversion Rates
Brick and mortar store locations have been feeling the pinch over the last few years in the shadow of e-commerce taking over the globe in response to busier lifestyles. However, with in-store experiences still being a valuable (but smaller) cornerstone of a company’s’ marketing plans, brands are increasingly turning to digital advertisers to unlock opportunities in data-driven online to offline measurement strategy.
Understanding how online marketing drives people into stores is quickly becoming a crucial component of measuring holistic digital campaign effectiveness. Thankfully, Facebook and Snapchat are two social media channels that possess an incredible amount of online customer data and thus have naturally become the frontrunners in pioneering innovative methods to help brands solve the question on everyone’s lips: “If I spend $1 in digital, what return can I expect in stores?”
Over the past two years, Facebook has been working hard to support the online to offline relationship with a variety of new product releases, including local awareness ad updates and an offline conversion API that allows advertisers to account for the impact of ad campaigns on transactions that take place in stores, call centers and more.
If you want to use digital to drive in-store traffic, the Store Visits beta (not available for brands located in malls yet) in conjunction with the Offline Conversions API is Facebook’s current solution. The Offline Conversions API will take an advertiser’s transaction file and push actual purchase numbers into the Facebook UI to showcase data tied to customers who were served Facebook ads. Currently, this is the most accurate depiction of Facebook’s value in driving sales that we have found in the marketplace.
With the Store Visits feature, Facebook shows foot traffic numbers from consumers who saw a Facebook ad and then walked into the store (no purchase numbers are included here). This solution is based on proxy data and polling but falls short compared to Snapchat’s latest measurement solution.
Snap Inc.’s Snap to Store offering is an innovative approach to prove store visitation lift from digital media by directly solving these online to offline industry measurement challenges:
Limited accuracy in fencing certain stores types such as retail stores in malls
Foot traffic to stores is often only being validated if a purchase is made in store with an associated email address
Heavy reliance on subjective polling data to validate store visits post visit
How Snap to Store worksStore geofencing is at the core of Snap to Store measurement. Locations like retail stores or restaurants are fenced at least 28 days before any paid media launch to establish existing, baseline foot traffic from Snap users to fenced locations.
The Snap to Store product can measure which users visit and which users do not visit locations, in line with those who have seen a brand’s ads and those who have not see a brand’s ads. It’s important to note that users only fall into the “visited store” pool if they have the app open in any capacity while in the store’s geo-fence.
With these numbers, however, Snap can not only report on total store visitor numbers but can also model for those users who visited a store location as a result of an ad they were exposed to and then provide the store visitation lift percentage. Reporting also includes breakouts by gender, age, location (states in the U.S.A) and time to first store visit after ad exposure – all valuable indicators in identifying a brand’s most valuable audiences on the platform – for further campaign targeting refinement.
Snap to Store is available at no additional cost to advertisers that meet a minimum spend threshold and have had their store locations fenced.
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Never before has voluntary sharing of a user’s location been as valuable to the advertising industry. See you in store!
Posted by Lauren-Ashton Shepheard
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