How To Increase Conversions With This 6-Step Customer Journey Analysis

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This content was brought to you by DAC Group. The views and insights presented herein reflect the perspective of the sponsoring entity.

Crafting effective websites and marketing initiatives aimed at boosting conversions hinges on a deep understanding of your customers’ desires and timing preferences.

What precisely triggers a potential customer to engage with your brand and ultimately make a purchase?

How can you effectively monitor these triggers?

Which strategies should you prioritize to amplify your profits and enhance return on investment?

Understanding the entirety of the customer journey is a paramount aspect of digital marketing, crucial for making well-informed strategic decisions and allocating resources effectively.

However, within the realm of SEO and digital marketing, pinpointing the precise impact of individual tactics can prove challenging, especially given the intricate web of nonlinear user interactions.

So, where does one embark on this journey?

In this piece, we delve into the synergy of first-touch and last-touch attribution methodologies, showcasing how they can work in tandem to elucidate the contributions of each channel, including organic search. This collaborative approach revolutionizes comprehension of the customer journey, from the initial spark of awareness to the decisive moment of conversion.

Let’s kick off by exploring the cornerstone of multi-touch attribution: comprehending the customer journey and accurately attributing each touchpoint to a sale.

What Is A Customer Journey?

Understanding the full scope of the customer journey is vital in digital marketing, enabling informed decisions and efficient resource allocation.

Yet, in the realm of SEO and digital marketing, evaluating the specific impact of individual tactics poses a challenge, given the complex array of nonlinear user interactions.

So, where does one begin this exploration?

In this article, we delve into the synergy between first-touch and last-touch attribution methodologies. By combining them, we can uncover the contributions of every channel, including organic search, transforming our understanding of the customer journey from initial awareness to conversion.

Let’s start by examining the foundation of multi-touch attribution: understanding the customer journey and accurately assigning each touchpoint to a sale.

As you might expect, each customer journey is unique, shaped by individual needs and interactions with your brand across various touchpoints. These interactions play a crucial role in guiding prospects towards conversion.

In an ideal scenario, your brand boasts a diverse array of content pieces, web pages, articles, blogs, ads, emails, social media posts, and traditional marketing materials, all influencing potential customers to engage with your offerings or make a purchase.

While understanding individual customer journeys is integral to your marketing strategy, analyzing them at a granular level can be overwhelming due to their sheer volume.

To streamline tracking and optimization efforts within your extensive library of marketing assets, it’s beneficial to categorize these journeys into a broader framework known as a marketing funnel. This approach enables you to pinpoint which marketing tactics are most effective in converting visitors into customers.

What Is A Marketing Funnel?

In the structure of a conventional marketing funnel, there are five distinct stages that map out the progression of potential customers through their journey:

  1. Awareness
  2. Interest
  3. Consideration
  4. Nurture
  5. Conversion

At the outset, the majority of new prospects enter the funnel at its broadest point: the Awareness stage. This initial phase serves as their introduction to your brand and frequently marks their first interaction with your products or services.

Following the Awareness stage, individuals may develop an interest in your brand’s message or offerings. Subsequently, they contemplate taking actions toward making a purchase and are poised to be guided through the nurturing process, ultimately leading to a conversion, often manifesting as a sale.

To maximize the effectiveness of your marketing funnel, it’s crucial to identify what aspects attract the highest proportion of potential customers to your brand and which elements persuade the greatest percentage of potential buyers to make a purchase.

Once this insight is gained, you can fine-tune your supplementary content to align with your top-performing components, thereby increasing sales potential.

However, pinpointing the precise content within the entire funnel that led to a sale for each customer requires attribution analysis.

What Is Attribution?

Marketing attribution involves linking a conversion to a specific piece of marketing material.

By employing attribution, you gain insight into which content pieces were most impactful in persuading a visitor to transition into a customer.

This can be achieved through various tracking methods, including UTMs, pixels, phone call tracking, and dedicated URLs generated through platforms like Bitly.

Before determining which tracking methods to utilize, it’s essential to comprehend the different types of attribution.

Which Types Of Attribution You Should Focus On?

Numerous types of marketing attribution warrant attention, but for crafting your initial yet potent multi-touch campaign, two key approaches stand out:

  1. First-Touch Attribution.
  2. Last-Touch Attribution.

Historically, you might have leaned towards first-touch and last-touch attribution models to fine-tune your campaigns for optimal effectiveness.

However, by merging these methodologies, you cultivate a synergy that surpasses their individual impact: multi-touch attribution.

In today’s discussion, our aim is to enhance conversion rates by analyzing a user’s engagement with your brand’s marketing materials through both first and last-touch attribution lenses.

First-Touch Attribution: Capturing Initial Engagement

First-touch attribution prioritizes the initial interaction a user has with your brand.

This initial touchpoint can occur across different channels, including social media, organic search, or through referral links. Leading web analytics platforms like Google Analytics 4 and Adobe Analytics provide customizable attribution models within their Explore and Workspace reports, facilitating efficient tracking of initial touchpoints. Leveraging tools such as the ‘Model Comparison’ feature in Google Analytics 4 enables you to refine channel evaluation and derive insights for strategic decision-making.

While first-touch attribution may seem distant from the final conversion, it offers several key advantages when integrated into your digital marketing strategy:

  1. Understanding awareness: First-touch attribution enables marketers to assess the effectiveness of their top-of-the-funnel marketing endeavors. By pinpointing the channels that initially attract users, brands can refine their strategies for building awareness, thereby enhancing the flow of prospects into the funnel.
  2. Budget allocation: Identifying the channels responsible for initiating the first interaction empowers you to allocate marketing budgets more effectively. By prioritizing investments in channels that drive initial engagement, marketers can optimize spending and enhance return on investment (ROI).
  3. Tailoring content: Analysis of the first touchpoint yields valuable insights into the types of content that resonate with the audience. Armed with this knowledge, marketers can refine their content strategies to produce more compelling and relevant material tailored to the preferences of their target audiences.

Last-Touch Attribution: Closing The Conversion Loop

On the other hand, last-touch attribution solely pinpoints the final interaction preceding a conversion event.

Despite its somewhat narrow focus, last-touch attribution presents several advantages:

  1. Conversion optimization: Concentrating on the last touchpoint enables marketers to pinpoint the specific channels or campaigns directly contributing to conversions. This insight is pivotal for refining strategies and enhancing campaigns to boost conversion rates.
  2. Efficient resource allocation: Similar to first-touch attribution, comprehending the last touchpoint aids in allocating resources more efficiently. Marketers can channel more resources into the channels or campaigns that directly impact closing deals and generating revenue.
  3. Campaign effectiveness: Last-touch attribution offers a clear insight into which marketing effort directly prompts users to take the desired action. This understanding is invaluable for gauging the success of specific campaigns and making informed, data-driven decisions.

Best Of Both Worlds: Layering First- And Last-Touch For Holistic Insights

In the realm of first-touch attribution, clicks are tallied based on the initial channel that directed a user to the website. Employing this method equips marketers with enhanced insights into the significance of each channel in initiating site exposure.

Contrary to the conventional last-touch attribution model, which only registers clicks from the last channel a user interacted with, this approach tends to disproportionately emphasize contributions from channels predominantly active towards the end of the conversion funnel.

The integration of multi-touch attribution reconciles both the first-touch and last-touch perspectives, allocating recognition throughout the customer’s journey. This strategy offers a comprehensive perspective on the involvement of each channel, spanning from the onset of interest to the ultimate conversion, thereby mitigating the risk of overvaluing the final interaction or undervaluing the initial one.

2. Assess The Likelihood Of A Session Converting

In the standard last-touch attribution model, conversion rates hinge on the channel with which a user most recently engaged. This approach often prioritizes channels and tactics prevalent in the later stages of the customer journey, neglecting the influence of efforts made earlier on.

By supplementing analysis with first-touch conversion rates, marketers gain a deeper comprehension of the significance of marketing tactics and channels employed in the early stages of the customer journey.

3. Determine The Impact Of Your First Entry Point On Last-Touch Conversion Rates

In this examination, our focus is on evaluating how early-stage marketing efforts influence last-touch conversion rates.

To accomplish this, we juxtapose the standard channel conversion rate with that observed when organic search served as the initial entry point. This comparative analysis enables us to gauge the effectiveness of deploying early-stage tactics and assess their impact on late-stage performance.

Remarkably, our findings reveal that nearly every channel exhibited a heightened conversion rate when organic search served as the initial entry point:

4. Determine The Impact Of Your First Entry Point On Last-Touch Average Order Values

Just as we examine the influence of the first-touch channel on conversion rates, we can also analyze how a user’s initial entry point affects their subsequent order value.

In our investigation, we observed that when organic search served as the first touch point, nearly every last-touch channel experienced a boost in average order value.

5. Evaluate The Contribution Of Early-Journey Marketing On Other Channel Revenue

Through juxtaposing revenue attribution between first-touch and last-touch models, marketers gain insights into the extent to which generated revenue is credited to alternative channels.

This analysis proves especially valuable in elucidating the contribution of each channel in directing users along the conversion path.

For instance, in the following scenario, DAC uncovered that 38% of revenue originating from first-touch organic search was subsequently attributed to other channels:

6. Measure The Impact Of Early-Journey Content (Blog)

Frequently, in the initial stages of research and informational content, its significance often gets underestimated when evaluated through last-touch attribution.

This category of content typically generates fewer immediate conversions. Consequently, when assessed via last-touch attribution, subsequent conversions are credited solely to the final channel. However, examining the data over a more extended period, we discovered that visitors to our blog typically revisit the site within five weeks to complete purchases.

Relying solely on last-touch attribution would have obscured this noteworthy pattern.

Beyond simply determining whether blog users convert, we can delve into the impact they have on conversions.

Our analysis revealed that users who engage with the blog exhibit a higher conversion rate, more page views per visit, and significantly lower bounce rates.

In the dynamic realm of digital marketing, comprehending customer interactions with your brand is pivotal for success.

Both first-touch and last-touch attribution models offer unique benefits, ranging from optimizing strategies for building awareness to fine-tuning campaigns geared towards conversions. By harnessing the insights provided by these attribution models and integrating them cohesively, marketers can craft more potent and targeted campaigns, ultimately driving superior outcomes and maximizing return on investment.

Original news from SearchEngineJournal