An online CRM system for small and medium businesses, Pipedrive started in 2010. As a software service (SaaS) platform, the team perceived serious potential in scaling globally. However, while incremental costs from a product and logistics perspective might be low, managing user acquisitions efficiently at scale seemed a tough challenge.

To drive its own growth, Pipedrive decided to build a scalable and structured user acquisition system using search engine marketing. First, the team analysed customer search trends and used Google’s Global Market Finder, an easy-to-use keyword-based search tool that helped reveal the right audiences to target around the world.

By merging search trend data (volume, growth and cost) with client acquisition data at market level, Pipedrive began to formulate an intelligent search strategy. They built a tiered market coverage structure, which put focus on their tier-one markets but also showcased the opportunity for long-tail markets.

Google’s global search trends helped us rank and prioritise paid search keywords before launch, giving us a clear entrance strategy into multiple territories. We also ended up with a manageable AdWords structure that a single person could feasibly oversee while scaling across more than 20 markets.

Dario Derna, Senior Director, Acquisition Marketing

This data clarity and tiered focus brought better performance results and also enabled the company to manage acquisitions in over 100 countries with limited in-house SEM resources. For free trial signups, the cost per acquisition (CPA) decreased by 10%, and for paying user subscriptions CPA dropped by nearly 40%. Conversion volume has already increased by 283%, with 42% additional growth forecast for the coming year. Pipedrive has expanded paid search activity into 20 new markets.

Going forward, Pipedrive is gradually expanding to further countries using the same tiered structure approach, with projected AdWords investment growth of nearly 100% over the coming year. Meanwhile, the team is also planning a similar strategy for app promotion.