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How to Determine Your Most Valuable Marketing Channels

How to Determine Your Most Valuable Marketing Channels

Digital marketing can be very costly if you’re not keeping an eye on what is and isn’t driving the results for your business. Once you identify which channels are delivering the most sales, you can invest more money into a model that is working. From this information, you can also adapt your approach to the channels that are not working as well.

It’s true that some things will yield faster results than others, but usually at more of a cost. PPC or Facebook advertising for example. These types of paid marketing channels will work more quickly than organic methods like SEO.

It’s Not Simply About Traffic

So you’ve set-up Google Analytics and now you have a reasonably good idea which marketing channels are driving the most visitors to your website. You might have taken this one step further and set-up transaction tracking to establish which channels are converting. This is a vital part of understanding the most valuable sources of traffic. Just because one source is sending 10,000 visitors and another source is sending 1,000, doesn’t necessarily mean the first is more valuable. When you have a better idea of which channels are converting, you can start to assess them further.

Working Out the Figures

Now you’re aware of the monthly sales coming from different channels such as PPC, SEO, referral traffic or social media. Does it end there, does this give you the full picture? Not quite. PPC might be converting the best, but how much are you spending here in comparison to other channels? You now need to work out the cost per conversion based on the time and money you are putting into each marketing effort. Unfortunately, this still doesn’t give you the answer as to which is the most valuable.

Assisted Sales

To make things a little more difficult, you’ve also got to consider the value of assisted sales and the buyer’s path to purchase. Looking at your Google Analytics conversions, you might see a sale that has been attributed to coming direct. This means the visitor came directly to your website by typing the domain directly into the browser during the session that they purchased. The reality is that prior to this that individual was probably influenced by other marketing channels. Consider this: On Monday the individual is introduced to your brand via a Facebook advert that has been targeted to them based on their interests. Since that person has now visited your website, by Wednesday of that same week, they see one of your Google remarketing adverts. This draws them back to your website where they make a mental note of the web address and decide they will come back later to purchase the item. Finally, on the Friday of that week, they return directly to your website and complete the transaction. By default, Google Analytics will attribute that sale to the source that delivered the last click (direct). The reality is that sale wouldn’t have happened without the initial Facebook ad and the reinforcement of the Google remarketing advert.

The real answer to the question, ‘how to determine your most valuable marketing channels’ is not to take your website’s analytics at face value. Dig a little deeper and make sure you’ve got all the facts before deciding where to increase or decrease marketing spend.

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