Digital Marketing Report, Q3 2013 – Attribution

Two things having big impacts on attribution modeling recently are email on smartphones and Gmail's new tabbed layout. Watch as Matt Mierzejewski discusses these changes and more.

This topic was covered in more detail in the Q3 2013 Digital Marketing Report. Download the report now to get the latest research and trends in attribution, paid search, SEO and more.



Matt Mierzejewski: Hi, I'm Matt Mierzejewski, and I'm here today to talk about multichannel marketing attribution and utilizing RKGs proprietary software for attribution management.

There is not a lot of change from quarter to quarter in this space and that is intuitive so that's the first thing to note.  But one thing we are looking at is how email is being impacted.  We have seen declines for three quarters in a row from email being the last marketing touch immediately preceding a purchase online.  And that's interesting to us because it is a big portion of the marketing dollars go there.  There are customers within the wallet share already.  They're maintaining their email, can serve as that nudge factor for promotions to lead to actual sales so it's a big channel, but the fact that it's on the decline from an attribution standpoint as a last channel of interaction may be of concern for many advertisers.

But why is that happening?  We really want to look at two areas. One is smartphone traffic, email traffic to mobile and how that might impact the ability to track that as the last touch before conversion.  As smartphone adoption is on the increase and it's been increasing and will continue to increase in quarters to come, people viewing their emails on the smartphone devices in an environment where they're not ready to immediately make a purchase decision off of that click on a promotional email.

That's not necessarily a problem and actually, in fact, Google's new cross device conversion tracking may be helpful in this sphere.  To understand the direct click from a Gmail specifically interaction where Google knows that user is signed in, to a subsequent search on a desktop or tablet, that was led by that email viewed on a smartphone device but ultimately the purchase was made by the user on a different device and connecting those dots.  That might close the gap in some of the decline that we are seeing inside this channel in a multichannel world.

The other area to look at inside of email is just the tabbing on the Gmail site directly.  So they have switched to promotional offers being within their own tab and not in the general inbox tab, and what impact is that having on email's ability to lead to ecommerce transactions immediately following that view.  So it's something we're watching. It's much debated and it's still early on, but we will likely report on some of our findings in future Digital Marketing Reports.

And to that end, thank you for joining me today.  And there’s lots more content to be had on  You can read our blog.  You can also download this Digital Marketing Report that we're putting out quarterly as well as get digital copies of our Dossier.  So please check us out and we look forward to seeing you again soon.