When folks at Omni­ture talk about the con­ver­gence of Site­Cat­a­lyst and Search­Cen­ter, you’ll hear us get pretty excited. There are so many things a com­pany can do by lever­ag­ing the data avail­able from Site­Cat­a­lyst with the power of our search product.

But some­times, all our excite­ment must seem like we’re spout­ing pie-in-the-sky ideas. Because what we’re find­ing is that peo­ple are only scrap­ing the sur­face of what they can actu­ally do with Search­Cen­ter and their SEM cam­paigns. They’re stick­ing with the obvi­ous stuff, like mea­sur­ing orders that come from key­word cam­paigns — but they’re miss­ing the deeper level, such as look­ing at all the steps of the shop­ping cart con­ver­sion process and mea­sur­ing “micro­con­ver­sions” along the way.

Update: This post is the first in a series about SEM tac­tics that lead to greater ROI from search campaigns.

  • Tac­tic #1. Online-Offline Revenue

Offline con­ver­sion data can be imported into Search­Cen­ter for report­ing and opti­miza­tion pur­poses. Once the data is imported, your paid search cam­paigns can be opti­mized based on offline lead fulfillment.

For exam­ple, we have a client whose aver­age order value is over $2,000. With a pur­chase that big, the client’s cus­tomers tend not to like to place their orders online. They pre­fer to pick up the phone. Omni­ture can give that client’s cus­tomers visit-level ref­er­ence num­bers. Here’s how it works: the per­son on the phone col­lects the ref­er­ence num­ber. Then, using a data sources file, the order can be uploaded into Site­Cat­a­lyst, and thus Search­Cen­ter. That enables the com­pany to track when a key­word is clicked on and when a pur­chase is made, whether the pur­chase hap­pens online or over the phone.

This is impor­tant, because cer­tain key­words might con­vert bet­ter offline, while oth­ers have bet­ter online con­ver­sion rates. If you have a key­word that dri­ves 70% offline con­ver­sions — and a higher aver­age order value than most online orders — you’d likely want to spend more on that key­word. But, if you thought the key­word was con­vert­ing poorly, because you didn’t track offline con­ver­sions, you might devalue it and spend less money on it.

The same tac­tic can work with lead gen­er­a­tion. Most search engine mar­keters mea­sure only to the point of the lead, because con­firm­ing leads tends to be a has­sle. But it’s easy with Omni­ture. If you’re using Sales​force​.com and also use Site­Cat­a­lyst and Search­Cen­ter, for exam­ple, Omni­ture inte­grates with Sales­force to get con­firmed leads, iden­tify the value of the rev­enue of those leads, load them back into Search­Cen­ter, and attribute them to the keyword/s that led to it.

3 comments
Chris Knoch
Chris Knoch

Steven: The CVP tool is more for Keyword Assist analysis. There is another solution which is the Cross-Channel Reporting Solution that we can layer together with this. I'm working on a post for it that should cover this in the next couple week. Can you ask your AM to put you in touch with the search consulting team? We could pick up the conversation offline at that point...

Steven
Steven

Does the CVP custom solution allow us to track both paid and organic search paths. For example, in order to track a user who initially clicks a paid search ad but converts after clicking on an organic listing. Furthermore, can CVP track across other channels such as display?

Bob Baer
Bob Baer

Great post. We've been using CVP for a while now and it really provides some good insight into the purchase funnel. It's amazing how many searches do not match our perception of how someone finds us. If getting the phone reps to capture the reference code is a challenge, then you might also consider using order confirmation emails to link offline conversions to online activity. The key here is that you have to give them a compelling reason to click from the email back to your site like checking order status.