As mobile devices become increasingly central to both product research and transaction, use Adwords Cross-Device Reports to gain insight into the devices their customers use to search, browse and buy.

May 2016
Topics is an online retailer whose innovative approach connects designers of beautiful furniture directly with buyers. Since the company was founded in 2010 it has received a host of accolades and been hailed as one of the UK’s fastest-growing start-ups. With that kind of tech pedigree it’s no surprise that and their digital partner Summit are constantly looking for ways to improve their customer understanding.

Over the past few years, the growth of mobile and the shift in consumer behaviour towards multiple devices have redrawn the map of online measurement, introducing a lot of noise and complexity. Without an accurate understanding of multi-device use and the contribution different devices make at each stage of the purchase process, it’s easy to underestimate their individual importance, leading to misaligned budgets and the potential to miss out on qualified leads. When customers are discerning and product values are high, this can become even more of an issue, as Tom Kay, Senior Online Acquisition Manager of explains: “The consideration cycle for our products is quite long and involves multiple devices. The shift to multiple screens has certainly made measurement more challenging.”

In order to see a more complete picture of device usage on their site, began consulting AdWords’ Cross-Device Revenue reports and applying that data to their Return-on-Ad-Spend (ROAS) calculation. This revealed that while the last-click model was attributing many conversions to desktop, mobile search was playing a crucial role earlier in the consideration funnel. “In many cases mobile search is at the start and middle of the consumer journey for, and the final stage has been desktop,” says Nick Cranwell, Senior Client Manager at Summit. “By understanding more about the conversion contribution of mobile devices, our collaborative approach with and Google has allowed us adjust budgets accordingly and scale spend in line with the growing importance of the device.”

The Results

“The shift to multi-device research and shopping has been an increasing trend. AdWords cross device reporting has given us data about which product categories and users are experiencing this the most. It’s allowed us to engage with customers at key parts of their shopping process, not just at the very end of their journey.” explains Tom, reflecting on the importance of the cross-device reports. By acting on these insights and increasing mobile budgets, has been able to capitalise on a newly-discovered opportunity, with mobile-contributed conversions increasing 240% year-on-year for the 2015 peak retail season and mobile ROAS increasing by 105% over the same period.



Summit Media

Understand the role of mobile in the buying process.
Acknowledge multi-screen behaviour and incorporate it in marketing strategy.
Use cross-device conversions when reporting results back to the business.

Used cross-device return-on-ad-spend instead of in-device return-on-ad-spend to optimise campaigns.
Forecasted new budget and new bids required to roll out the approach across all accounts using bid management technology
Monitored performance during peak season to evaluate results and bid accordingly

+204% year-on-year increase in mobile conversions
+21% increase in overall conversions powered by mobile sales
+263% increase in mobile traffic along with a ~30% decrease in cost-per-click
+105% increase in mobile return-on-ad-spend when looking at “total conversions”