Social channels have the potential to exert a great degree of influence on several aspects of shoppers’ buying behavior. The inherent nature of friend recommendations could seed desire and even drive decision-making, including which product, which brand and where the purchase is finally made. Since these decisions are made much too early in the buying process, we’re not entirely certain how well this worked and if Marketers could meaningfully add value this conversation.
Google Analytics now provides the ability to report ‘Assisted Conversions’. In other words, if a sale was influenced by a social channel and referred to you by another intermediary, you will still see this reported as a conversion that was assisted by social. You can also reward a dollar value to an assisted conversion relative to direct conversions from social. This enables you to track the notional value generated by each social channel over time.
A few questions arise about the interpretation of this measure. For instance, are these simply dumb referrals, or did the social conversation mention my brand? Who were involved in the conversation – friends, strangers, brand advocates? In fact, the content of the original conversation would make an extremely powerful addition to this report. This is going by how valuable your Search Engine keyword reports are allowing you to easily assign goal values to search queries on a scale of ‘very likely to buy’ all the way down to ‘yet another window shopper’. If you review the official blog post by Phil Mui, Group Product Manager, Google Analytics – these details are not immediately clear.
In any case, if you’re driving your online retail brand’s social presence this is great news. With assisted conversions, your report is going to help paint a clearer picture back up to your top management. If your social presence involved activities such as posting pins on Pinterest to your followers, providing a support or Q & A presence on Facebook, you might want to keep a keen eye on how these tie back in to total assisted conversions delivered. Assisted conversions will also help you to better understand how your activities on say Pinterest compare to Twitter, and Facebook when preparing a shopper to make a purchase with you.
What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.