Online-to-offline attribution continues to be a major pain point for retailers and brands, as businesses struggle to connect online ads to in-store visits. Today, the digital marketing technology provider Swirl is offering more clarity for retailers, with the launch of a new direct integration between its Mobile Presence Marketing platform and Facebook Ads Manager. The integration, which Swirl says is the first of its kind, makes it possible for retailers to leverage their existing in-store location signals to measure the impact that Facebook ads are having on store visits.
As of today, retailers using Swirl’s platform can connect “verified” real world store visits to Facebook ad impressions and more accurately measure the direct impact that Facebook ad campaigns are having on the way consumers move around inside their stores.
“Considering that advertisers spent over $27 billion in 2016 on Facebook advertising, there’s obvious value in being able to optimize this spend for drive-to-store effectiveness,” says Swirl’s marketing director Rebecca Schuette.
Schuette says Swirl is the first company to offer online-to-offline attribution through a direct integration between retailer-owned beacons and Facebook’s advertising platform. The company has been working on the integration since Facebook made its offline conversions API available to developers last year.
“Retailers have been asking for better ways to measure the impact of their online advertising campaigns on physical store visits, and digital location signals like beacons provide the most accurate, timely, and verifiable source of physical world behavioral data available today,” Schuette says. “By integrating the Swirl platform with Facebook Ads Manager, we are able to bring the power of mobile presence to digital advertising, enabling a powerful new online to offline attribution capability for retailers.”
Swirl’s new integration also gives retailers another way to generate value from the location signals already in their stores, Schuette says.
As of today, all businesses using Swirl’s platform can integrate with Facebook to verify store visits without needing to rely on reports from third-party vendors. Retailer-owned beacons should also allow department stores and brand advertisers access to even deeper insights into which aisles or displays customers visited after viewing specific Facebook ads.
Using real-time results that automatically match in-store beacon interactions with online Facebook ad impressions, retailers should be able to optimize their ongoing Facebook campaigns based on how they’re seeing consumers interact inside their stores.
“It allows them to increase store traffic by better understanding and optimizing their Facebook advertising investments,” Schuette says. “Brand advertisers and media agencies that work with these retailers also stand to benefit from this new capability.”
Stephanie Miles is a senior editor at Street Fight.