Apple-Proof Your Attributions (While Cutting Your CPA)

Ad platform automations are great…so long as they’re receiving good data.

Facebook and Google can currently measure basic goals in a short time frame. But with privacy protection measures like GDPR and Apple’s iOS changes, even that is getting harder.

So without event-based conversion tracking, how are you meant to optimize your campaigns?

Well, SegMetric’s conversion tracking gives you a robust way to report sales back to the ad platforms, while respecting the privacy of your visitors. Even better, you can attribute purchases that happen day, weeks or months later.

This means that with a few clicks you can give the AIs the information they need to keep your ads profitable.

Introducing Conversion Feeder

The Conversion Feeder reports back on conversions that the Facebook & Google pixels aren’t able to detect. It can attribute immediate sales as well as more complex situations such as:

  • Payment transactions that happen on a separate site
  • Deals that are closed via sales calls and paid directly
  • Trial completion payments that are taken automatically
  • Purchases made beyond Facebook’s 7-day attribution window

With changes such as iOS 14, it is now also ideal for feeding the AIs with conversion data they would otherwise be blocked from seeing.


How does Conversion Feeder work?

Conversion Feeder builds on a feature built into both ad platforms called the Offline Conversions. You can manually upload offline conversion data using CSVs, or you can let SegMetrics process it automatically and improve the results.

SegMetrics integrates with your ad platforms, email system and payment process, then joins up the data for each customer. It doesn’t matter if there was an email funnel or demo call between the ad click and the sale, SegMetrics will connect the two together. It is this sales data that SegMetrics feeds back to the ad platform.

That way your attributions don’t rely on fragile cookies or website events, while Facebook doesn’t get to spy on every visitor.

For more information on how it works check out our documentation:
Facebook Conversion Feeder
Google Conversion Feeder

What about iOS 14 and Apple’s ATT?

Conversion Feeder is fully compliant with the various privacy protection measures introduced in iOS 14 and iOS 14.5.

SegMetrics save the ad ID for each contact entry, such as when someone makes a purchase or downloads a lead magnet. We then use this ad ID to feed attribution data to the ad platforms.

There is no cross-app tracking or reporting on bounced visitors. Add to that the 1st class cookies and server-side tracking and you’ve got a completely Apple-proof attribution system.

Even better, Conversion Feeder will send back attribution data on actual sales, even if there was a long funnel before they converted. Optimizing for actual sales means that advertisers decrease their CPA by an average of 24%.


Start Optimizing Your Ads Today!

Get started with two easy steps:

  1. From your Integrations Page, click the Settings button, and choose Setup Ad Tracking

  1. Follow the instructions above, choose your conversion pixel, and then click Save

That’s it! Your conversion data will be fed daily to Google and Facebook, improving your ad attribution and targeting automatically!

Zach Goldie

Zach Goldie

Zach is lead copywriter for SegMetrics. As a former engineer, he loves the puzzle of how to best write a piece that matches the prospect's priorities.

Google and iOS14.5 – What it means for advertisers

Because running profitable ads isn’t challenging enough, Apple has got the marketing world in a spin with the App Tracking Transparency (ATT) frame. It requires any applications that use cross-app tracking to show an opt-out prompt to the user, as well as limit the ways that websites can track people with cookies.

Advertising on Facebook’s mobile app was particularly affected (as we went into detail on here), leading to them announcing a set of changes.

As with any complex changes there are plenty of folk doomsaying that this is the end of online advertising as we know it, while others seem chill about the whole thing. So, in this article we will pick apart what the new changes mean for businesses using Google Ads. We’ll break it down into:

  • Search ad targeting
  • Display ad targeting
  • Basic conversion tracking
  • Advanced conversion tracking
  • Impact on SegMetrics

All the changes will ONLY apply to iOS traffic from apps with ATT turned on. Normal web traffic (even on mobile) will not be affected.

(SPOILER: You’ll be ok, it might just require some changes)

In a nutshell

If you just want the quick answer of how iOS traffic will be affected, then here you go:

  • Targeting search ads with keywords will (mostly) work as usual
  • Display ads will target groups not individuals
  • Basic same-visit attribution will be slightly affected
  • Some changes are required for offline conversion tracking
  • SegMetrics uses its own conversion tracking which is unaffected by ATT
  • SegMetrics can still report offline conversions back to Google Ads

So if you’re running simple search ads with people converting during that visit you’ll be fine, but for anything else it’s best you know the details.

NOTE: There are other impacts such as on deep-linking apps and app install campaigns, but we won’t be covering those

How will iOS 14.5 affect search ad targeting?

Search ads don’t rely on the ad platform knowing your personal data. So, if someone searches for one of your keywords while using iOS, the auction will run as usual.

Click prices might fluctuate in the short term as advertisers get used to the new attribution data (more on that below), but the basic functionality of search ads won’t be any different.

You will also still be able to use the basic refinements, such as demographics and interest groups

The only big change in targeting search ads is with remarketing lists for search ads (RLSA). If someone visited your site while using iOS 14 they will not be individually identified on your remarketing list, but instead grouped into part of a FLOC (more on that below). So your RLSA will still be relevant, but might miss those users who came to your site on an iPhone.

How will iOS 14.5 affect display ad targeting?

Normally when someone visits an ad that shows display ads, Google looks at all the personal data they have about them and runs the auction to choose what to show them.

But that will now change for iPhone users.

Techniques are being developed that will identify someone as part of a closely defined group instead of as a known individual. So an ad will be chosen that fits the shared set of traits.

Google is developing ways to serve relevant adverts while protecting people’s privacy and personal data. Two methods in development are Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC) and First “Locally-Executed Decision over Groups” Experiment (FLEDGE).

FLOC aims to group people into tightly defined cohorts based on their browsing history. Advertisers can then bid based on FLOC IDs, but not on a personal behaviour level.

FLEDGE is about having a new trusted server designed purely to give limited data to bidding algorithms. The user’s data will remain shielded within the device, keeping control in their hands.

This means that there may be teething problems for tactics such as remarketing campaigns, but personalized ads will still be possible.

How will iOS 14.5 affect basic conversion tracking?

First let’s look at the simple scenario. Plenty of businesses only track conversions that happen on your website immediately after they click a link or ad (or shortly after), that are picked up by Google Analytics or the conversion tag.

The core change is that affected iOS traffic will no longer have a Google click identifier (GLID).

Instead, iOS users will be assigned a WBRAID or GBRAID. These new parameters will be saved with a 1st party cookie in a similar way to the GCLID. 

Google will use the parameters to tie conversion back to an advert, but not to an individual. This should not lead to a major change in recorded conversions or in the running of adverts.

In a way, this is a good change — because it lets us know immediately if we’re dealing with an iOS user, and what level of data protection they’re applying.

Savvy marketers are probably already thinking of interesting ways to use this for their own internal segmentation.

How will iOS 14.5 affect advanced conversion tracking?

The key difference will be if you have been processing the GCLID as part of your conversion tracking or passing it across to a system such as your CRM.

Because iOS users won’t have a GCLID, it is currently unclear what the impact will be on offline conversion tracking.

Offline conversion might start accepting the WBRAID as an identifier, but Google’s documentation still only states that a GCLID is required. 

Advanced conversion tracking that have relied on GCLIDs will hopefully be updated to use these new parameters, but we can’t say for sure.

How will SegMetrics be affected?

SegMetrics does not rely on the GCLID, so will work as usual including in our offline conversion tracking.

We track our attribution separately from Google (and Facebook)which is still relevant and unaffected by iOS as it’s tied back to users in your email marketing platform, and thus follows all of the ATT guidelines for privacy tracking.

SegMetrics only saves someone’s personal data when they enter it into your database, whether it’s a purchase, trial signup or lead magnet download. This is completely allowed in iOS, GDPR, CCPA  and other rules which are aiming to protect people’s privacy online.

That means SegMetrics users can build up a comprehensive database about their leads and customers while still keeping everyone happy.

What’s next in the privacy wars?

Between GDPR, CCPA, ATT and dropping support for 3rd party cookies…it’s clear that privacy protection is a growing movement.

The built in conversion tracking from Facebook and Google are going to be two key battlegrounds. Their current approach of gobbling up every ounce of possible data about every website visitor is going to be steadily cut down.

Unlike those ad platforms, SegMetrics reports on people who intentionally gave you their data. That means our tracking is not affected by any of the changes in iOS14, iOS14.5 or Facebook.

SegMetrics is always marketer-first, and always transparent about how we collect and report on your data. Because if you can’t trust the data, you can’t trust your marketing.

Zach Goldie

Zach Goldie

Zach is lead copywriter for SegMetrics. As a former engineer, he loves the puzzle of how to best write a piece that matches the prospect's priorities.

The comprehensive guide to planning out and optimizing your marketing funnels

Weak marketing funnels can drag down a business. 

So of course, there are countless articles about elements such as improving open rates.

But we have found very few reliable guides that give a complete overview, that go from considering the reader’s stage of mind to putting the pieces together in the best possible way.

That’s why we wrote one ourselves.

It is a 110 page guide on building automated funnels, based on our experience working on hundreds of campaigns with everyone from Fortune 500s to SMEs to famous entrepreneurs. These are evergreen funnels designed to run continuously, without the need for slogging through one-off product launches.

In it you will learn:

  • Why automated funnels can be the cornerstone of your business (can you say “goodbye, launch model”?!)
  • How small improvements to your funnel can lead to a huge boost in earnings
  • Moving from vanity metrics to actionable data, numbers that enable great decisions
  • The “classic” 6-step marketing funnel and how to apply it to your business
  • How the “Hero’s Journey” is used as an essential format for email sequences

This isn’t some “lite” or watered down guide. It is the distillation of a decade’s knowledge from working in the trenches.

Even better, it’s under $10.

We want this knowledge to be easily affordable, not as a three-figure video course. That’s why it’s available as either a paperback or kindle book on Amazon.

The 90-Minute Guide to Building Marketing Funnels That Convert – Paperback edition

The 90-Minute Guide to Building Marketing Funnels That Convert – Kindle edition

If you’ve ever hit a hurdle with your funnel then go give it a read.

Zach Goldie

Zach Goldie

Zach is lead copywriter for SegMetrics. As a former engineer, he loves the puzzle of how to best write a piece that matches the prospect's priorities.

A fairly awesome guide to finding your 80/20 customers

Marketers have become rather obsessed with goals and conversions. (And with good reason!) We take them as the benchmark of success, building whole strategies about those precious metrics.

But, they usually show a limited view into what is actually bringing in the big bucks.

We often measure trial signups or a one-off purchase. It’s a great start but leaves the vast majority of revenue as simply appearing out of nowhere. 

Data-focused marketing has one huge blindspot

A big issue that marketers face is the disconnect between measuring attraction and retention.

Reporting from ad platforms or google analytics can show you whether a visitor achieved the goals you’ve set up, but these must be kept limited. Goals typically have to:

  1. Happen online, such as detect if an enquiry happened, not whether the call lead to a sale
  2. Occur within a couple of visits, ideally happening on the same device within a few weeks
  3. Be a one-off action, such as looking at if they signed up but not how long they kept the subscription

We have become used to these short term indicators that our traffic is probably correct.

Which is fine if a company is aiming for a single interaction such as a one-off purchase. But if you’re aiming to attract repeat buyers or longterm subscribers then it’s just not up to task. It can tell you how many trial signups each campaign attracted, but after that all the sources get mixed into a single clump.

Most SMEs report that over half of their annual revenue comes from repeat customers

BIAKelsey

It becomes difficult to see where your biggest spenders came from, which means we can’t see where most of our revenue is coming from

Session based analytics can’t handle multi-purchase attribution

Marketing analytics is typically focused on what happens while someone is visiting a website.

This is fine until the cookie expires, the buyer switches devices or a transaction happens off the website. For example, website analytics won’t attribute later purchases to the original  source and won’t receive information from the payment process about subscription payments. So, only first-purchase attribution is possible.

Which is frustrating, because LTV is the best indicator of value in your business.

It’s like counting how many people come into a restaurant and ask for a table, but ignoring how much they actually spent, let alone whether they ever came back again.

A 5% Increase in Customer Retention can mean a 30% increase in company profitability

Bain & Company

So website analytics is good for examining your top of funnel to get that first goal or purchase. But it fails with long funnels or long retention periods, where a customer needs tracking over months or years to attribute multiple purchases back to a single source.

It’s a shame since attracting visitors who are even slightly more likely to become repeat buyers can have a big impact on profitability.

Valuable answers are hiding in your subscriber database

Marketing automation platforms are typically designed around email addresses. 

These are robust for longterm tracking (unlike browser cookies). You can identify purchases as coming from the same individual even if they were years apart, so long as they use the same email address.

Many email platforms such as Mailchimp Drip and Klaviyo will connect directly to your payment processor. That means the revenue can still be associated with the subscriber data, even if it was automated or within an app.

The real magic happens when you enrich that customer data.

You can probably store more data in your email platform than you are currently doing. The UTM of each subscriber’s initial source can usually be recorded, along with tagging them about how they have interacted with different touchpoints and the items they’ve purchased.

It takes a bit of doing, but can build a powerful customer database for your business.

Note: download our Ultimate Tagging Guide if you’re unsure how to tidy yours

6 ways you could use this 80/20 data

Having a database of your top spenders is useful just by itself. You can use it for lookalike campaigns or targeted remarketing. But, there’s a whole bunch of opportunities for using it to boost your revenue:

1) Compare the LTV of customers from each source

With enriched subscriber data you can finally see where your big spenders came from. You can break it down as far as you’d like, comparing general online vs offline or looking at individual ad campaigns.

2) Which emails are being read by the big spenders?

Open and click rates are useful, but it’s hard to measure the impact on revenue unless it’s aiming at a sale. Your database can tell you whether your most important customers are reading your emails or if it’s they only interest the freebie hunters.

3) Do certain products attract repeat buyers?

Just because a product gets the best immediate ROAS, doesn’t make it the most long term profitable. If you record each customer’s first purchase then you can see how the lifetime spend differs depending on what they bought first.

So you got a first purchase, great. Now what? Build up your tags to find out what are the most popular second buys and whether there’s a particular effective 1-2 punch to use in your remarketing or post-purchase emails

5) Did that popular blog post attract eventual buyers?

Content marketers rarely get the credit they deserve. Unless visitors make an immediate purchase, the revenue generated will often be attributed to other sources. This adds an extra reason to collect their email, as that way you can attribute the revenue correctly even if the transaction happens months after.

6) Which onboarding method is best at reducing your churn?

You can easily see which email sequence has the most interactions, but it’s hard to tell which one got folk to stick around. It gets even harder if you want to compare touchpoints like emails vs an onboarding video call, but with the right tags you can easily see how the LTV differs between tactics.

The probability of selling to an existing customer is 60-70%, while the probability of selling to a new prospect is just 5-20% – Market Metrics

Two methods to crunch the LTV data

Building up this information around your subscribers is great, but only if you can analyze it the way you want. So, you have two options:

Option 1: Pivot tables

You can assess the data in excel, although it takes some familiarity with pivot tables. Expect it to take an hour or two per metric, often involving some data exporting and combining.

As an example, let’s say you wanted to find an average time to first purchase, the workflow would be:

  1. Export your Leads & their creation dates (Or their tags and the tag application dates)
  2. Export your Purchases, along with the contact Id and the date the purchase was made
  3. Use a filter (or pivot table) to make sure that you’re looking at the first purchase that each contact made
  4. Then, use a VLookup to attach the Lead to their purchase, and compare the date the Lead was created to their first purchase date
  5. Finally, create a second pivot table that groups leads by the number or days it took them to purchase, and then count each of them

For more details, download our guide to calculating real lead value.

Option 2: SegMetrics

To manipulate the data in a few clicks, try out SegMetrics.

It connects to your email marketing platform, advertising tools and payment providers. That way it can automatically gather the data for each person going through your funnel.

You can then slice and dice the data any way you wish.

You’ll be able to look at the behavior of webinar attendees, the revenue associated with each upsell or the LTV of each source. These can then be saved to revisit as often as you’d like, without any need to redo your work.

“The majority of a band’s revenue comes from 10-20% of their fanbase” – Lucchese, Echo Nest CEO

TL;DR, SegMetrics lets you see how you attracted and retained your best customers

Stop relying on your website analytics to guide your funnel decisions. It is great for optimising your top of funnel, but it won’t help you improve the LTV.

Instead, enrich the data in your email platform. Record the UTM data and tidy up your tags.

You can then use SegMetric’s multi-purchase attribution to reveal the answers. You can see where your best customers came from to allocate budget accordingly, or see which mid-funnel activities actually improved retention.

Grab a 14-day trial to see for yourself.

Zach Goldie

Zach Goldie

Zach is lead copywriter for SegMetrics. As a former engineer, he loves the puzzle of how to best write a piece that matches the prospect's priorities.

Building Marketing Funnels that Convert – in 90 Minutes

We know every business owner wants to know the secret to getting conversions out of your marketing funnels. But not everyone has the time to learn all the intricacies of marketing analytics. That’s why Keith has created a fool-proof, 90-minute guide aimed at helping you and your business build a marketing funnel that achieves real results.

In this book, you’ll learn:

  • Why automated marketing funnels are the bread-and-butter of your business
  • How optimizing your funnels can lead to a massive boost in sales
  • The 6-step “classic” marketing funnel and how you can implement it in your business
  • The three critical things you must measure to quickly optimize your funnels and get them to convert better
  • Why understanding the “Hero’s Journey” can be one of the most profitable things you’ll ever learn when it comes to email marketing

And much more.

Keith has taken over a decade of learned strategies for optimization and condensed it into one easy-to-read guide for his fellow entrepreneurs. You’ll be getting more conversions and in turn making higher profits in no time! He goes deeper into conversions than just email click rates (although still important!) and really helps you define your customer and each of their individual needs, resulting in higher satisfaction from your audience.

“And while feedback from your customers and audience is always valuable, it’s important to understand that people’s actions always speak louder than their words. This is why it’s so important to define and measure every step of your funnel!”

Get your copy and start turning a higher profit today: https://amzn.to/3jQPvgN

Zach Goldie

Zach Goldie

Zach is lead copywriter for SegMetrics. As a former engineer, he loves the puzzle of how to best write a piece that matches the prospect's priorities.