Practical Ecommerce

The PeC Review: ClearSaleing Ties Profit to Marketing Tactics

Ecommerce marketers want to generate the greatest possible revenue from every promotional dollar invested. But tracking or measuring exactly how each ad, each promotion, or each press release affects shoppers can be allusive.

ClearSaleing provides a platform that helps companies accurately manage online campaigns, ensure financial accountability, and make online promotions more profitable. The experience of measuring and tracking which ads are successful and which promotions contribute to sales can be similar to seeing a sunrise. It is awe inspiring and illuminating.

For example, ads that seemed not to be very effective when you only monitored your pay-per-click (PPC) campaign on Google or Microsoft AdCenter can turn into the star quarterbacks of your marketing offensive, passing potential customers to other ads, which close the sale. This ad tandem is more effective together. Without a solution like ClearSaleing, to continue the sports metaphor, you might cut your quarterback and leave your campaign’s wide receiver running around the end zone waiting for someone to toss a customer.

Because I believe that the ClearSaleing solution will significantly improve your online marketing, I am awarding it four out of a possible five stars in this, “The PeC Review.”

Each week, “The PeC Review” is my opportunity to introduce you to the products or services that I believe will improve your ecommerce business. For this week’s installment, I’m addressing ClearSaleing.

Tying Ads to Profit

ClearSaleing uses cookies to monitor customer interaction with a merchant’s online advertising and merchandising over time. The resulting data allows ClearSaleing’s clients to determine which ads are having the most significant effect on sales and profitability. The ClearSaleing solution is tying advertising or marketing tactics directly to sales in a way that is rare and desirable.

In fact, connecting a particular marketing tactic-like a banner ad-to a specific customer’s purchase activity is seemingly the Holy Grail of ecommerce marketing that leads to marketing success.

Better Attribution

The secret to this solution is how it attributes actual dollars of profit to particular advertising or marketing components. At most ecommerce businesses, all of a sale’s value is attributed to the ad that touched a customer last. Sometimes called the “Last Click Effect,” this attribution method almost always ensures that marketers cut well-performing ads, when in fact they frequently invest more and increase investments into lower performing ads that just happened to be the last touch in a series of customer interactions.

With ClearSaleing, ecommerce marketers begin a path toward mathematical attribution that properly identifies the most profitable sales funnels for each ecommerce business.

But reaching purely mathematical attribution models is a step-by-step process. New ClearSaleing users will first evenly attribute sales to all ads or tactics in a particular customer’s purchase path. Over time, as more data becomes available, businesses will begin creating attribution exceptions or exclusions—often giving no credit at all to the last ad clicked, which is a complete reversal of last click measurements.

In the end, this advanced attribution model can be applied programmatically to PPC, comparison shopping, or other bid-based promotions so that ecommerce businesses are making the best possible marketing investments.

Cost of Goods Sold Included

The ClearSaleing solution also takes into account a merchant’s cost of goods sold so that ads are evaluated not just on traffic or revenue but also on profit.

Works Best With Merchants That Make Large Ad Investments

As is the case with data-driven systems, ClearSaleing will produce more informative results if (1) the merchant using it makes a large investment into advertising—perhaps $100,000 per month—and (2) uses a variety of advertising vehicles like PPC ads, banner ads, Facebook ads or applications, online commercials, or more.

One Missing Link

ClearSaleing is great at monitoring online promotional activity but it does not easily monitor your offline advertising and marketing, which can actually be the best marketing you can do.

There are some steps you can take to help close the loop on this sort of marketing—coupon codes or vanity URLs might be an example—but it is not part of ClearSaleing’s normal functionality.

Summing Up

ClearSaleing has created an attribution management product that gives companies an accurate view of their marketing. I have certainly not covered all of the tool’s functions or capabilities. So check out ClearSaleing to see just how it can help your business.

Armando Roggio

Armando Roggio

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