Brand new to Attribution? Read this first.
Attribution is the process of identifying, and assigning a value to, a combination of events and user actions that contribute to a desired outcome. For display advertising, attribution typically looks to identify which channels and customer touchpoints influence a user's decision to convert on site.
View-through and Click-through Conversions
A click-through conversion occurs when a customer directly clicks on one of your ads and completes a desired action on your site. A view-through conversion occurs when a customer sees one of your ads online and subsequently converts on your site without ever having clicked the ad. (By opening up a new tab and typing your website in, directly searching for your company, etc.) This is important because, according to our and third party research, the majority of your audience does not click on ads. In fact, only about 16% of online users account for 100% of all clicks on display advertising.
Blended attribution takes into account both view-through and click-through conversions when measuring the impact of your display advertising campaigns. This can help you more accurately assign marketing dollars to the channels and individual touch points that are playing the biggest role in convincing your customers to convert.
Choosing an attribution model
When assessing which attribution model is right for you, it’s important to understand that many users interact with advertising in different ways. While click-through conversions make it easy to see that someone interacted with your ad, this form of measurement can miss out on capturing the full customer journey.
It is also important to note that customers interact with display campaigns and search campaigns in different ways.
When someone types an inquiry into a search engine they are doing so with the intent of clicking on a link and being directed to a different site.
AdRoll’s campaigns look beyond just search to incorporate hundreds of networks and exchanges that offer premium display advertising. When measuring campaigns that incorporate this many channels, it makes sense to value click-through and view-through conversions.
Someone that is served display advertising is generally on a site that they don’t have any immediate desire to leave (i.e. social media pages, news sites, sports pages, etc.). In this instance it makes more sense to include ad views in campaign success measurement. Brand recognition and views are how you can keep your company top of mind and convince customers who will not directly click on an ad to convert.
Benefits of Blended Attribution
Though incremental conversions can come from users who have clicked on an ad, they can also come from users who have seen an ad and then navigated back to your site at a later time. This is why we consider both view-through conversions and click-through conversions when measuring campaign success. In fact, a recent study shows that the audience of people that click on ads the most fall under the age of 25 or over the age of 65. However, these demographics are reversed when the study looked at the audience of people who actually convert online, finding that audience to fall between the ages of 25—44. If you are only measuring the audience of people who click on ads, there is a chance that you are missing out on the core audience of people who actually spend money online.
How to assign credit to view through conversions
A lookback window is the amount of time that an advertiser allows to pass after a customer touchpoint occurs. If there is a touchpoint after the window has closed, that channel no longer receives credit. Adjusting your lookback window can help you tailor your attribution model to your specific business cycle. For example, if your sales cycle is shorter (as we typically see with retail clients) your lookback window may be only 24—48 hours. However, if you have a longer buying cycle, as we typically see with our B2B clients, lookback windows can often times be allocated up to 30 days.
AdRoll's default conversion window setting is 7 days. Based on testing, we discovered that 97% of the time, incremental conversions happen within a 7 day window.
Can I still see how many click-through conversions my campaign has?
Yes! In your AdRoll account dashboard, under the “audience” tab, you will be able to see the amount of click-through conversions your campaigns have achieved.
How do I adjust my attribution settings?
You can adjust your attribution in "Attribution Settings" located in "settings", the gear icon in the top right corner. This will allow you to look at your click-conversion and view-conversion settings. Here, you can adjust conversion windows and weighting. You can also adjust attribution percentage, which is the amount of conversions that are actually credited to your campaigns with AdRoll. This will allow you to easily and more accurately craft an attribution model that closely aligns with your unique business cycle.