Case study: how AllSaints boosted acquisition and conversion using ‘full funnel’ programmatic advertising

AllSaints is a UK fashion retailer with 132 stores spread across 16 different countries, and has been operating its ecommerce store since 2006.

The retailer has seen positive results from its retargeting campaigns using programmatic advertising, but earlier this year AllSaints decided to trial the use of programmatic across the entire purchase funnel, not just the lower end.

This is an overview of how AllSaints and Sociomantic Labs undertook the task and the results it achieved.

Segmentation

To help move users through the stages of the funnel from prospect to loyal customer, visitors were segmented based on three stage-specific campaign strategies.

  1. Prospecting: driving clicks from qualified, new-to-site users in order to increase AllSaints’ website traffic
  2. New customer acquisition: driving first-time conversions from website visitors who were not already existing customers
  3. Building loyalty: identifying and re-engaging with existing customers who had purchased within three months, as well as reactivating customers who were dormant in the past three months, but had purchase in the three months prior to that.

Filling the top of the funnel 

AllSaints wanted to focus on driving upper-funnel activity through prospecting campaigns. 

all-saints-retargeting

These campaigns made it possible for the retailer to engage with qualified new users early in the consideration stage, which is valuable for supplying qualified website traffic from users who can be moved closer to conversion using programmatic display.

However it was decided that the success of its prospecting campaigns should not be measured by conversions, but against engagement from users who had previously never visited.

Prospecting measures included the following:

  • Percentage of new sessions referred by prospecting campaigns
  • Average bounce rate of this traffic
  • Average number of pages per session
  • Average session duration for these prospects

Results

In the first six months, AllSaints achieved the following results:

  • Prospecting campaigns referred the highest number of new users to the site of any display partner: 96.5% of its total ‘new user’ display traffic in the UK, and 91% in the US.
  • In the UK, prospecting campaigns referred visitors with much higher average session duration than the site average, even greater than direct-to-site traffic. AllSaints’ targets for bounce rate and pages-per-session were also achieved.
  • In the US, prospecting campaigns achieved a lower bounce rate than direct-to-site traffic, and a higher average number of pages-per-visit.

Beyond the last click

The customer journey has many touchpoints before conversion, not just programmatic display, so of course the contribution of the prospecting campaigns may not be accurately reflected in the last-click conversion reporting.

Therefore AllSaints and Sociomantic also examined:

  • Sales in which prospecting campaigns provided an ‘assisting click’.
  • Which channels contributed to conversions which required multiple touchpoints.
  • Where in the path to purchase those channels were positioned relative to the conversion.

The results revealed a large degree of influence from prospecting campaigns in the upper to mid funnel:

  • In the UK, prospecting campaigns provided the largest source of first visits to AllSaints in cases where they provided an ‘assisting click’. 
  • The campaigns also delivered the second-highest number of second and third visit users
  • In the majority of cases, where prospecting campaigns provided the first visit to AllSaints, the conversion was achieved by the user returning direct-to-site.
  • On average, the customer path to purchase in the US involved more touchpoints and more channels in each journey, but prospecting campaigns provided first-visit assisting clicks for conversions, which achieved a last-click from affiliate, email, and paid search channels.

After six months it has been found that prospecting visitors are more responsive at key times of year for the retailer. Multichannel click paths with much greater lengths (for example, when a campaign introduced users to AllSaints during the summer months) began to mature to conversions via other channels during peak and sale periods later in the year.

Overall, in the six months since launch, AllSaints has achieved:

  • Increase in post-click sales of 494% in the UK and 366% in the US 
  • A fall in the eCPA of 63% in the UK and 29% in the US
  • An increase in the ROI of 150% in the UK and 20% in the US

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