Pictureframes.com, the online entity of Graphik Dimensions Ltd.®(GD), is the premier source for all of your printing and framing needs. They were already an established brand name with a diverse customer base, but it was clear that two external factors were posing a threat to their market share.
Consumers were not only shifting to a mobile-first shopping experience, but they were more likely than ever to aggressively comparison shop before making a purchase decision. Meanwhile, dozens of competitors, ranging from boutique frame shops to the likes of Walmart and Amazon, were popping up in the PPC arena.
It was clear that they needed a team to come in and execute a well-rounded PPC strategy.
MULTIPLE BUYER PERSONAS
Pictureframes.com has a vast amount of products that appeal to many different customers. They appeal to customers looking for a one time purchase, artists placing multiple orders per year, and large organizations bulk ordering massive amounts of frames. The customer base ranges from informed designers that know exactly what they want, to first-time buyers that aren’t familiar with terms like mat or canvas.
We found that all of these audiences were seeking a different shopping experience. Some required a completely customizable experience, while others wanted fewer options, and B2B sales required a completely separate experience altogether.
And many of these users all began their process with variations of the same broad search queries.
We needed to find ways to segment our campaigns so that each user was being served the most relevant, optimal advertisements and shopping experience.
SHIFT TO MOBILE
When we began our partnership in the Spring of 2016, Pictureframes.com was stuck between a rock and a hard place. They lacked a mobile-optimized site and therefore could never find a way to profitably convert mobile traffic. However, they knew that the market size of desktop-only shoppers was dwindling, and they were going to lose out to the competition if they didn’t have a mobile presence.
Our team needed to find a way to maintain and scale a profitable mobile presence while they transitioned to a responsive website. This would require advanced bid strategies and audience targeting, paired with extensive understanding of the buyer journey, attribution models, and cross-device conversion tracking.
With a lack of audience segmentation and diversification across multiple channels, the Pictureframes.com PPC accounts were at a crossroads of having to choose between profitability and total revenue. The introduction of new competitors was driving up the average cost-per-click to a point that would not be sustainable in the long term. But Pictureframes.com wasn’t just interested in sustaining average results… they needed our team to increase their total revenue and maintain profitability.
We had our work cut out for us.
Over the last year, we’ve helped Pictureframes.com profitably scale their digital advertising efforts and map out a long term growth strategy. We’ve used data to discover who their most valuable buyer personas are and what motivates these audiences to buy. We’ve also assisted them in launching additional products and landing pages that are specifically geared toward niche audiences.
LOWERING COSTS & WASTED SPEND
In ultra-competitive ad auctions, it’s imperative that you’re doing everything you can to keep your costs as low as possible.
We relied on extensive search query analysis and negative keyword lists to cut wasted spend. We wanted to limit the amount of ad impressions served to users we deemed less likely to convert. Not only would this prevent wasted spend on that first click, but it allowed us to improve the quality of our remarketing lists and work toward our goal of effectively segmenting buyer personas. We also used negative keyword lists to sculpt our traffic to the most relevant ads and landing pages. This helped lower bounce rates and increase site engagement.
MANAGING COST PER CLICK
Early on we relied heavily on advanced, programmatic bidding strategies to help us lower our cost-per-click while staying competitive. Reduced CPC translated to reduced cost-per-conversion, which then allowed us to experiment with new campaigns or initiatives that would otherwise be too risky. For example, even though we anticipated a much lower conversion rate for our mobile ads, the overall reduction in costs from other campaigns provided us an opportunity to run mobile tests and ultimately find a sweet spot.
Prior to our partnership, Google Shopping had been drastically underutilized by Pictureframes.com and therefore provided us with a tremendous opportunity. We quickly found that regardless of bid, we were not able to show Google Shopping ads for the highest quality, bottom of the funnel search terms that were most valuable to us.
A misunderstood technical aspect of Google Shopping campaigns is the use of an invisible Quality Score metric that helps determine your ad rank, and ultimately how much you’ll pay per click. It was clear that the Quality Score of our shopping feed was the root of the issue, and we applied several techniques to quickly turn this around.
We hit another speed bump when we noticed that Google was not serving the most relevant product ads for particular searches. Users were clicking on our Shopping ads because they were intrigued by the image, not because they were actually interested in buying, and the higher than average click-through-rate for those products was making Google’s algorithm believe that they were best fit.
However, this resulted in a temporary detriment to our performance, and yet another a classic example of why algorithms and automation always need to complemented with human PPC experts.
We then leveraged a 3rd party feed management platform to optimize the titles and descriptions for products in the Shopping Feed. Using loads of search query data to guide our decisions, we optimized the product feeds in a way that allowed us to serve the correct ads for higher quality searches, and allowed our users to have more relevant information about the product before they clicked on the ad.
Effective remarketing strategies were the most significant aspects of our growth. We used advanced conditional logic inside Google Analytics to collect and segment lists of users based on specific search queries they used, pages they visited, previous buying behavior and more.
This allowed us to use unique bid strategies for our search and shopping ads for users, and develop display campaigns that were relevant and targeted to the users’ specific interests.
We also pinpointed specific areas of the buying process where users would leave the page to comparison shop, and were able to improve our ability to either keep them on the page or bring them back shortly thereafter.
Finally, this helped us achieve more clarity regarding our buying personas.
Overall, our PPC management increased net revenue by more than 19% year-over-year. We achieved this by identifying niche areas of opportunity while staying focused on the big picture and long term growth.
We were able to achieve growth in total sales, including an increase in Google Shopping conversions by 67%, while sustaining or improving the profitability of our efforts, including a 113% increase in Mobile Return on Ad Spend and 48% increase in Bing Return on Ad Spend.
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