Budget decisions in e-commerce are mainly taken by it’s efficiency of the marketing campaigns. Even cheap channels can be a waste, if the quality of visitors is low. On the first look „expensive“ campaigns can be quite cheap measured against the resulting turnover.
To visualize the decision process of buying online helps understanding a lot.

…then we might google and end up on Amazon, read customer ratings, ask friends and then buy online. To do so we need to register or logg in and pay. A while later the book arrives at home.

Google proves in a current study, that a user has 900 interactions, 139 google searches and dozends of trader requests, before buying a car. A similar process needs can be expected in machinery sales, maybe even more research.

The decision process until closing shows severe differences and critical topics in the machinery market.

  • Search
  • Find product and research
  • Compare (attributes and price)
  • Take a buying decision

Buying online or offline

The first contact to a trader happens by several channels. Google, search engines like TradeMachines or other activities. Especially if a trader gets on the website of a seller, the visit is well trackable with tools like Google Analytics. But how many Buyers buy on the first visit of a trader website and instantly click „buy“ or call to close a deal? Probably very little. At the same time the first visit is an important step to prepare the buying decision.

But before the sale happens, most of the times the following happens:

  • Other websites are visited to compare
  • There are questions to clarify details about the machine
  • The link is forwarded to a colleague
  • Budget questions and financing options need to be solved
  • The laptop is closed and the final decision is slept over
  • Etc. ….

… lead to the loss off the original contact when finally closing the deal. Often this results in the conclusion that channels like email or direct visits are the only factors to drive turnover. And that would be a reason not to spend any marketing budget. In reality the success of secondary channels like direct visits and email reactivation depends a lot on the generation of new buyers through other channels. In the end you would have never build up your database or newsletters if you would not have been active on Google and other search engines.

Visitors come several times before buying a machine.

The good news is, that online advertising is completely measureable and not only the last visit which leads to the sale. Google Analytics tracks the data which visitors come several times and through which channel every time. That means a visitor comes one time through Google, one time through TradeMachines and the third time through a click from an email, Google Analytics knows that. In the standard setting only the last visit is used for the success evaluation. That is done because most clients are consumer websites and a sale is more a quick buying decision on the first visit. In our industry that is different.

Google Analytics shows in the bottom area of its menu a „model comparison“. Here you can change which visits should be taken into account for an online success.

… be a request for proposal. The model are weighted either for the last visit, the first and last or e.g. every visit as a part for the decision phase and then you are able to see how much contribution every channel has for your turnover. The bath tub like position model within analytics helps especially well to understand which channels are relevant for new contacts AND closing for a deal.

Marketing costs are more and more measurable and becoming the cost of sales and clearly adjustable to success. Early learning assures a professional growth in digitalisation.

We are experienced e-commerce professionals, passioned in mechanical engineering. Digitalization means change for every industry. This fact creates winners and losers. We’d love to see our clients and partners as winners – that’s all!

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