A Boost for the Holidays: How to Activate Omnichannel Bidding in SA360

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2021 - Another Unprecedented Holiday Season

2020 was an unpredictable year and as the 2021 holiday season is quickly approaching, it should come as no surprise that there may be uncertainty surrounding this year’s holiday season as well. We are facing similar challenges like the dynamic changes in consumer behavior and market volatility. What’s unique about this year is that there are more in-store shoppers, but there are also more shoppers online than in previous years. Luckily, Search Ads 360 (SA360) has the tools and an automation solution that can help search marketers respond to the unexpected trends of what the 2021 holiday season brings. 

The Omnichannel Boost

Retailers need to provide a seamless shopping experience in their physical stores in combination with a variety of digital channels to really help differentiate from their competition. 

You may already know that SA360’s automation can be an invaluable tool during the busy holiday season. Enabling auction-time bidding (ATB) can help advertisers maximize sales wherever people are shopping. That said, marketers can further boost search performance and increase their total sales via omnichannel bidding as the path to purchase becomes increasingly more complex. Consumers today are naturally curious and many are doing their research digitally to assist with their in-store shopping.

Omnichannel customers are the most valuable segment of shoppers and account for more sales than the average shopper, so brands should differentiate how they target to win them. Regardless of where customers purchase, using real-world data by including store visits/sales in your bid strategies’ conversion goal combined with advanced machine learning can help you grow your total sales. 

This holiday season, it’s important to meet people where they feel comfortable shopping and adapt to the fluctuation of consumer demand online as well as offline. Here are simple three steps to activate omnichannel bidding in SA360:

Step 1: Setting up Your Measurements 

Currently, your online measurement probably consists of using Floodlights or Google Ads Conversion Trackers (GACT) to track your conversions online. To get started with omnichannel bidding, you'll also want to take into consideration conversions that are happening offline as well. Here, you’ll need to determine the offline campaigns you want to measure, and bring those offline conversions into SA360. There are a few ways to import offline conversions:

  • Uploading your offline conversions via the SA360 API or the CM360 API. 
  • Using GACT to import store visits/store sales, call conversions or offline imports. 

Until this is done, there will not be any sort of reporting, bidding or activation on omnichannel. 

Step 2: Determine Your Omnichannel KPIs

Omnichannel KPIs will depend on your business goals. Once your offline measurements are imported into SA360, you can use formula columns that will allow you to create your omnichannel KPIs. Using formula columns can combine your online conversions with your offline conversions to get your total conversions online and offline. 

Step 3: Create Your Bid Strategy 

Once you create the formula columns, you can create a Bid Strategy to optimize toward your omnichannel KPIs. We still recommend that you use ATB to get the best performance and use the ATB signals to optimize for every unique search. Using advanced automation via bid strategies will drive towards both online and offline conversions.

A Holiday to Remember

Using omnichannel bidding to navigate the holidays can help marketers increase their total sales. As online advertising becomes more automated and as shoppers move between online and offline shopping this year, it’s critical that you put customers at the heart of your automation strategy and automatically adapt to customer behavior between the physical and the digital worlds.

For more information, or if you have any questions about your seasonal strategy, our experts can help! Simply contact us.