Companies with a brick-and-mortar presence often struggle with painful and divisive silos in their marketing channels. The paid search team might claim that sales they’ve initiated with their budget were attributed to the retail store bottom line; the store team is frustrated that some customers prefer to try items on in the store, but then complete their purchases online for a wider variety of sizes and colors.
This type of organizational conflict not only wreaks havoc on morale and team cohesiveness, it also causes businesses to misunderstand the value of individual customers, and stifles their ability to market to those people in a consistent, personalized manner.
One Customer, Multiple Profiles
This problem is made worse by the simple fact that each digital marketing channel requires its own tools and software, which means that customer data could be spread across multiple sources. Valuable customer insights might be found on digital ad networks, retargeting platforms, mobile, social media, and a myriad of other places.
The fact that a single customer might have touch points with several different data systems that do not talk to one another is a problem. It means that the business cannot see the entire customer journey, much less send that customer a consistent message across channels.
Without a visible customer journey, businesses will never fully understand which marketing tactics are working and which aren’t. And since online and offline marketing channels have different budgets and goals they must work toward, being unable to tie all channels to the single customer means the business is asking employees to work under a blindfold.
Traditional Affiliate Site-to-Store
Older affiliate site-to-store tracking models were a great first step toward coming up with a solution to this problem. In the past, advertisers who wanted to track offline sales through their affiliate programs typically offered customers either a scannable bar code or a special coupon code to use when purchasing something in the retail store. This code tracked to the affiliate network, and the appropriate publisher received credit.
Unfortunately, while this did help the affiliate channel support brick-and-mortar retail stores in some cases, it did not help track customers jumping across multiple digital and offline channels.
The New Data Frontier
Luckily, advances in the ability to store and manage data can now resolve this problem entirely.
New SAAS technologies can match consumers across channels and devices based on data, opening the doors for businesses to combine disparate data to a single customer. This means that the business will be able to tell if a customer buys a product in a store after viewing a paid search ad, social media, or other channels.
These technologies can also help a business understand the value of an affiliate marketing program on the landscape of all other digital channels. Affiliate managers can gain insights into individual publishers, deepening their ability to understand what value they add to the offline world. This would allow them to adjust payouts to reflect the publisher’s overall value and increase program return on investment.
Integrate Site-to-Store Tracking
As more retailers implement this silo-erasing technology, those that don’t will lose favor among publishers to their competitors. The ability to target and personalize messages for customers, and then accurately measure performance of campaigns will increase program conversions and efficiency, giving these data-savvy businesses a leg up in their industries.
Streamline can provide a solution for site-to-store tracking. Please contact us today for a free consultation.