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What Is Offline Conversion Tracking?

Today, I will be answering a question that I've seen a lot lately…

What is offline conversion tracking?


What Is Conversion Tracking?

To answer the question about offline conversion tracking, we will first need to understand what conversion tracking is. Conversion tracking is the tracking and measurement of your online leads and sales.

Depending on the type of business you're in, what you want to measure as a conversion will be different.

Businesses that focus on lead generation will track phone calls and form fillouts as conversions whereas e-commerce businesses might prefer to track their sales as conversions. They are usually tracked on Google Analytics as well as on each of the individual ad platforms you're using to advertise.

Conversion tracking is crucial in online marketing.  Without it, you can't see how many leads and sales are coming through your site or measure how successful your ad campaigns are.

What Is Offline Conversion Tracking?

So, what is offline conversion tracking?

Pretend you run a plumbing company and you're running search ads on Google for people looking for plumbers in Cork. If someone searches for a plumber, clicks your ad, goes to your website and fills out your form, Google can see that conversion as a lead. But they have no way of knowing if that lead resulted in a sale.

Offline conversions use customer data to match with online identifiers such as cookies, emails and phone numbers so that you know which campaigns are generating the most actual sales.

Why Use Offline Conversion Tracking?

While online conversion tracking is really effective, it doesn't tell the full story, especially for lead generation-focused campaigns. What happens when you run a lead generation business, but you have wild differences in closed deal value?

If some deals are worth €50 and others are worth €5,000, but the sales happen offline e.g. with a salesperson instead of on your website, then you can't tell which campaign is generating the €50 leads and which is generating the €5,000 leads.

Offline conversion tracking helps to plug that data gap. It gives credit to the correct campaigns for the true value of your conversions.

Using offline conversion tracking allows you to optimise your campaigns and targeting towards generating quality leads that turn into sales, instead of optimising purely for quantity.

How To Import Offline Conversions?

There are 2 main ways to import offline conversions into ad platforms.

The first way is directly through your CRM system. Depending on the CRM you use, you may be able to link it directly with your ad accounts so that offline conversion data is flowing into your account automatically at regular intervals.

The second way is through manual uploads of your offline conversion data to each of your ad accounts.

This way takes a lot more time and effort as you will have to export your customer data from your CRM, and then import it manually into each of your ad accounts every 30 days or so. While it's more time-consuming it's definitely still worth doing.

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Written by Christian Donovan, Director of Performance Marketing at 3B1.