Being a medium-sized retailer focusing largely on the internal running of their business, PPC marketing had become overlooked as a tool to generate new sales, who were instead investing in more traditional marketing methods such as print and radio. The concept of PPC marketing made sense to the retailer, but they were sceptical of its ability to generate a measureable return on investment. The gap in tracking, from website visit to showroom visit, made it difficult to understand the true source of showroom sales, so the retailer contacted Calculate Marketing to enquire about a profitable PPC strategy which could deliver measurable long-term results.
Highest sales volume in 23 years
The huge variation in the types of searches made by people shopping for outdoor furniture (price, quality, function, size, colour, style, material, location) meant that an extremely long-tail strategy consisting of almost 500,000 tailored ad messages could help the retailer stand out from the competition by sufficiently catering for the varying needs and requirements of 1,000s of searchers:
The vast majority of sales coming from showroom drop-ins made it impractical to accurately track sales back to their original referring source (keyword, ad message, search query etc), so softer engagement metrics were instead set up to better understand visitor engagement and likelihood of showroom visit. These secondary engagement metrics were then fed back to the campaigns to help measure, optimise, and refine the PPC strategy.
A highly-tailored long-tail strategy and alignment of the campaigns to help maximise visitor engagement led to a significant increase in average page views, time on site, contact page views, showroom locator searches, online enquiries, and return visits. Compared to the previous year:
Due to the more targeted nature of PPC traffic, PPC ads out-performed Google organic, direct traffic, and Facebook referrals on all meaningful engagement metrics:
Even though the analytics metrics suggested the PPC campaigns were working well, the success of a long-tail PPC strategy aligned to maximise engagement was only truly evident when the retailer recorded a record year of sales by investing their print and media budget into PPC marketing:
Confident that online activity was crucial for offline sales, the retailer is now undertaking more creative PPC strategies such as audience pipeline remarketing (showing various messages at staggered cookie periods), and RLSA (targeting previous website visitors as they later make more generic furniture-related searches on Google). Due to the strong seasonal variation of outdoor furniture, different strategies have since been developed for each quarter to better align marketing messaging and click budgets with the seasons.
If you’re a bricks and mortar retailer looking to use online marketing to increase your offline sales, please get in touch for more information.