Case study: How to track multi-channel funnels while working in real estate
Before you start analyzing the effectiveness of ad campaigns, you need to understand how a user decides to buy your product/order a service. How many times he faces your company and which channels drive him to you? What can stop him from buying here and now? What are the factors that influence his decision?
Everything is pretty much clear if we are talking about pizza delivery. The user wants pizza, enters a corresponding request into the search engine, opens one of Google’s TOP results. Then he makes an order if the price and delivery conditions are okay for him.
Now let’s imagine that it’s a purchase at a higher price and there’s no urgent need to receive it immediately. For example, a user chooses a smartphone. He discovers different websites, he compares prices, reads reviews, waits for a salary, etc. The decision-making process is delayed, and the chain of interactions with your company is growing and receives new links.
Real estate is probably one of the most challenging niches from this point of view. The high average revenue per user and many additional factors make the decision process too long and complicated. For sure, marketing offers lots of ways to persuade your “thinking” audience to buy. For example, remarketing, social media promotions, email newsletters, paid ads, a good website with detailed information, etc.
But how to understand the effectiveness of each channel? Let’s set the example of our partners’ project, digital marketing agency OdesSeo.
Client: Group of 30 companies that ensure the full cycle of construction work.
Area: sales of apartments in the new buildings of standard and premium class.
Region: Kyiv and Kyiv region.
Task: promotion of client’s housing complexes and increasing the number of sold apartments.
Tools: campaigns in Google Ads, including search and display ads.
- Call tracking connection.
- Configuration of goals in Google Analytics, including targeted, replied, missed, via the callback, etc.
- Analysis of the report on multi-channel funnels to define the role of each channel in the whole chain of lead movement to conversion.
- Optimization of each ad channel to receive the maximum effectiveness from promotion in general.
Call tracking connection
Only 22% of people who wanted to request a company fill out an online form. The other 78% were calling. Therefore, accurate tracking of the effectiveness of ad channels is impossible without call analytics.
We also recommend you to read about businesses that need call tracking more than others in this article. Just a tiny spoiler: real estate is also presented in that list.
But the thing here is that Google Analytics doesn’t track offline conversions, in other words, calls. It means that if you open reports, you’ll see that 78% of customers came from nowhere. To fill this gap, the agency’s specialists and the company decided to connect Ringostat. They chose our call tracking due to the service usability, additional features and positive experience from other projects.
Moreover, our service allows listening to recordings of conversations. It means that you can discover the interests of the audience and correct ads according to them. For example, OdesSeo specialists found out that potential customers often ask about instalments for apartments in certain housing complexes. Thus, it was evident that this information was crucial for potential customers, so it has to be in the ads.
Set up goals on calls in Google Analytics
After the connection, call tracking transfers data on calls to Google Analytics. But it’s not the end. You won’t receive a lot from the general information on calls, as there might be a large percentage of junk, missed, non-targeted calls among them. You need to configure goals for target, missed, answered, calls via the callback widget, etc.
By the way, if you want to make the work with calls even more effective, you can pay attention to the special Ringostat report. It allows you to see multi-channel sequences by a narrow group of calls, formed using filters.
Example of Ringostat report on Multi-Channel sequences
Analysis of the report on multi-channel funnels
As we said above, the decision-making process in real estate is one of the most difficult and requires enough time. You can’t say that a person who wants to buy an apartment will simply google “apartment buy”, go to the first website and instantly make the purchase. It’s more likely that he will discover several options, compare prices, discuss it with friends and family, etc.
He will also several times interact with our company — organic search, paid ads, remarketing. It is even possible that someone will recommend this potential customer to contact us. As a result, the “warmed up” customer will visit our website once again. He can do so via the search, ads or any other channel and then only make the target action — fill out the form or make a call.
In this case, which ad channel led a customer to the conversion? For sure, the last one will be considered as the most effective. But the thing is that all the channels are important and there will be no conversion if you miss at least one.
That’s exactly why, it is so important to track not only the first and last interaction but the whole chain, determining the value of each channel. There are special reports in Google Analytics — on assisted conversions and multi-channel funnels. They are easy to understand. Simply read this Google support article.
What are “assisted conversions”? To put it simply, these are visits that did not lead to a conversion directly but participated in a chain of interactions. Intermediaries between the “first acquaintance” and the targeted request. In the chain of interactions, such an assisted conversion is at the beginning or in the middle, but not at the end.
The user’s path to a targeted request is saved by Google for 30 days. The information about assisted conversions is stored for 30 days as well. You can see them in the report “conversions” — “multi-channel funnels” — “assisted conversions”.
For a company, an assisted conversion report looks like this:
Example of the report on assisted conversions
We see that search and display ads bring in the most assisted conversions. It means that these channels are important stages on the way of the user from an acquaintance with the company to target action.
The financial value of each channel is not indicated in this report. As there is no sense to install an e-commerce module to a website that works in the real estate sphere. After all, no one will put an apartment to the basket.
But if the module mentioned above is already presented on the website, then the approximate price, brought by each channel, will appear in the corresponding columns of the report.
In the last column — “Assisted / Last Click or Direct Conversions” — we see the value of the channel as a source of direct conversions: logged in — bought. The closer the indicator is to zero, the greater the value of the channel as a direct source. If the indicator is close 1, the channel is more significant as an additional one. If the value is 1, then such a channel equally sells and helps to sell.
Pay attention to the report on multi-channel funnels. It is as well useful to understand the role of each channel in the chain of interactions.
Example of the report on multi-channel funnels
To understand how important it is to analyze these reports, just imagine what would happen if OdesSeo specialists analyzed the effectiveness of ad channels by the last interaction. One of the assisted conversions would have shown bad results, and it would be logical to stop the campaign. For example, it could be display ads that are important for the chain but don’t influence the final decision directly. As a result, all conversions where this source presents as an additional one would be lost.
Optimization of each ad channel to receive the maximum effectiveness from promotion in general
As part of the project promotion, all ad campaigns were divided into groups in the report on multi-channel funnels. Due to the analysis of calls, and the analysis of the report on multi-channel sequences, the agency’s specialists were able to determine the role of each channel as an additional point. And therefore, specialists were able to correctly distribute the advertising budget. The report on multi-channel funnels showed the huge potential of remarketing as a supplementary channel. And, in addition, it showed the value of other types of campaigns.
Due to the example of this case, we see that real estate is a complex business niche with a long process of decision-making and a large part of phone calls in the total number of requests. Therefore, you can forget about the effective distribution of the advertising budget, without call analytics and analysis of the report on assisted conversions.