More than 90 percent of retail sales happen offline, as Marketing Land notes, but much of today's shopping journey happens online. Thankfully, lift studies that link online behavior with in-store visits are becoming more readily available. These metrics allow you to measure in-store visits driven by your mobile ad campaign to learn precisely how well it's performing.
Previously, it was a challenge to link online ad exposure to offline sales, but with mobile's geolocation data, vendors — who serve mobile ads — can measure the number of customers who visit a retail location after seeing said mobile ad. For instance, Facebook offers location-based awareness ads that show stores "near me," and offer calls-to-action such as "directions" or "call." Now those ad reports include a store visits metric, which enables you to see how many people came to your retail location after seeing your Facebook ad and analyze results across multiple locations — but there are many ways to crunch the numbers.
A recent Pinterest lift study showed how the company's Promoted Pins impacted in-store sales per impression as compared to other online advertising. As Marketing Land mentions, as is typical of a lift study, they used control groups to determine if exposure to digital ads made an impact on purchase. In addition to creating a wealth of profile information about Pinterest users, the lift study showed five times more incremental sales per impression.
According to Marketing Land, Google introduced its store visits tracking two years ago, and is now expanding it to more kinds of advertisers — and will eventually offer it to small businesses. Using these reports, Target discovered that one out of three clicks on their mobile search ads resulted in a store visit, which they saw as a clear mandate to increase mobile search spend.
There are many options for understanding the value you're getting from your mobile ad buy, and a trusted digital marketing partner can help you make sense of the wealth of available data to create actionable plans for your business.