How the Length of Your Marketing Funnel Affects Attribution| No Comments
Over the course of hundreds of conversations with BloomReach customers on the subject of attribution, it has become clear to everyone at BloomReach that the discussion really needs to start at the core: with a common understanding of each business’s unique marketing funnel. Here’s how we define the common set of steps that customers take as they move towards conversion (with credit due to Forrester Research and Adam Cohen of Fleishman Hillard):
- Awareness and interest: The consumer sees the first impression and clicks on a search result, link, or display ad
- Learning and consideration: The consumer turns to a search engine and performs a non-branded search query seeking more information, visits product review sites, consults with friends via social media
- Decision and purchase: The consumer performs a branded search query after performing research and progresses further down the conversion funnel, or clicks on a link from an affiliate site, product review, or a friend’s Facebook page
- Conversion: The consumer browses a website and makes a purchase, signs up and submits a lead, or meets another conversion goal
- Loyalty and advocacy: The consumer shares his or her positive experience with his social network or with strangers via product reviews. The consumer makes repeat purchases.
Do these steps fall into a single interaction timeline? Frequently, no. We analyzed conversion data for a sample of our customers from the first 10 months of 2011 and found that:
- 55% of conversions involved more than one marketing interaction. Sucharita Mulpuru of Forrester had a similar finding from a study she did on 15 retail websites using 2010 holiday season data.
- The marketing funnel actually follows a “long tail,” where on average, 20% of conversions involve more than five interactions and 10% of conversions involve 30+ interactions.
More importantly, we found a huge amount of variability in the shape of individual customers’ funnels. For example, one organization completed approximately 70% of conversions in a single interaction, while another required multiple touches for 80% of its conversions.
You can look at this data in more detail by reading our white paper, “Making Online Attribution Work: Three Steps to Better Business Decisions.” Click here to download a copy.