How to Improve Your ROI Without Increasing Ad Spend
Optimizing ad campaigns is a critical part of improving ROI and maintaining the health of your ecommerce business.
Most businesses just starting out on running ads need to focus on the basics before they can fine-tune their ad campaigns.
Incremental improvements to the following can help improve the performance of your ads:
- Good copywriting.
- High quality creative images or videos.
- Targeting the right audience.
- Trying out different advertising channels.
- Establishing a solid tech stack for follow-up.
Once your ads have been running for a few weeks or months, you might still be struggling with getting the ROI you want. Your campaigns may not even be achieving positive ROI.
This is when you need to turn to more in-depth knowledge and advanced tactics to optimize your ad campaigns. These are the expert secrets to optimizing ads that most people don’t know or talk about. These strategies will give you a critical leg up on your competition.
1. Don’t Turn Off Your Ad Campaigns Too Soon
A rookie mistake that happens a lot is turning off a winning ad campaign because it looks like a loser.
It’s a fact that clicks take time to buy. Users usually don’t click and buy immediately (although we wish they would!). It can take a few interactions with your brand to build know, like and trust enough for them to be ready to buy.
That’s why we recommend waiting at least one buying cycle before turning off a new ad campaign. This gives a better picture of how well that campaign is performing, and protects you from turning off campaigns that could be major winners if they were just given a little more time to shine.
What is your buying cycle time?
How do you know how long to run a campaign before deciding on its fate? You need a reliable way to know your brand’s actual buying cycle time.
At Wicked Reports, we’ve developed a handy tool we call the Predictive Behavior Report just for this purpose.
Using this tool, you can identify not just your buying cycle time, but what percentage of people buy during different time frames after interacting with your brand. We have this tool both for clicks and for leads.
This makes it really easy to know when to analyze a campaign and how long to let it ride before making a decision.
Analyzing Your Campaign
Once you’ve run a campaign through one or two buying cycles, it becomes easy to review a campaign and decide if you want to kill, chill, or scale the ad spend.
Campaigns that are clearly negative ROI, it’s time to kill it. Turn it off and try something different.
If your campaign has relatively neutral ROI, you might want to chill it. Don’t add spend, but also don’t kill it quite yet. Give it some time and see if the leads are converting over the long term.
Finally, if a campaign is positive ROI… give it more juice! It’s time to scale.
2. Compare Ad Performance and Optimize Across Channels
There is a lot of uncertainty around online advertising right now. Ad platforms are regularly making huge changes due to privacy improvements or internal policies. This is just one reason why it’s important to diversify the number of channels you are advertising on.
Another reason is because different ad channels perform differently. They each have their own advantages and disadvantages, which are often overlooked by less inexperienced media buyers.
At Wicked Reports, we’ve tracked billions of dollars in ad spend, which has allowed us to observe that frequently Facebook converts clicks to customers faster, but Google’s clicks result in more valuable customers over time. You will want to use both, and balance them out depending on what your business’s needs are at the time.
That is why it is so important to optimize campaigns in different platforms against each other. It’s tempting to make easy comparisons inside a single channel’s ad manager. However, if you are not comparing cross-channel multi-touch attribution, you’re going to miss out on some huge opportunities.
In order to fully optimize ad campaigns, you may need to move budget across channels. This will help get more reliable, high ROI results long term in your online advertising.
Finally, reviewing performance and optimizing across channels requires accurate data. If you are not using a third party dashboard like Wicked that reconciles the data and provides accurate multi touch marketing attribution, then you have probably noticed that sales and revenue from various advertising channels do not add up to your actual sales and revenue.
This is a huge problem if you are looking to optimize. If multiple channels are taking credit for the same sales, or not reporting sales at all, then it’s impossible to know which campaigns are actually performing well.
For this reason, it is critical to have accurate, cross-channel attribution in order to properly optimize your ad campaigns.
3. Optimize for Higher LTV
To boost ROI over time, it’s essential to focus on optimizing campaigns for high customer lifetime value instead of number of sales.
This is way easier said than done, because ad platforms simply don’t report on customer LTV. You can see average order values (AOVs), but LTV attributed to individual customers and averaged is not something that ad managers handle. This is because they do not report back individual users and tally their purchases.
Using a third-party marketing attribution software like Wicked Reports allows you to collect data on individual users, which can then be compiled into accurate, multi-touch marketing attribution reporting that includes long term LTV.
Identifying the campaigns that perform better not just in sales or revenue from one-time sales, but those that are converting to high value customers long-term is powerful. You can focus on optimizing for attracting customers who buy over and over again, instead of one-time buyers.
This is especially helpful if your brand relies on subscription sales. Most attribution in Ad Manager or even third-party marketing attribution software don’t differentiate between one-time sales and subscription sales, making it difficult to track customer retention and churn.
Long-Term Ad Campaign Optimization Takeaways
- Know your buying cycle time to avoid turning off winning campaigns too soon.
- Compare campaigns across channels.
- Optimize your ads for high LTV customers.
Critically, all three of these expert methods for optimizing ad campaigns require an accurate, unbiased third party multi-touch attribution platform that puts all your conversion data in one place.
Wicked Reports provides all this and more, including ROI Attribution and Cohort Reporting so you can watch your customer LTV grow over time in an all in one marketing attribution software.
Book a demo today and find out if Wicked Reports can help your brand optimize ad campaigns with ease.