Offline Conversion Tracking: An introduction
In today’s digital age, online conversions are the primary focus of most digital marketers.
But is this enough?
Tracking offline conversions should also be an essential part of any digital marketing strategy. Offline conversions occur when a customer takes action outside the digital realm, such as visiting a physical store or making a phone call.
Offline conversion tracking is important because it allows marketers to measure the effectiveness of their online campaigns in driving real-world results. It helps them to understand how their online marketing efforts translate into offline sales and customer behavior, which is essential for making informed marketing decisions.
According to Salesforce’s 5th edition of the State of the connected consumer, email loses its spot as the number one favorite channel, while phone calls and in person communication are amongst the most preferred.
Offline conversion tracking can provide valuable insights into customer behavior and preferences. Marketers can use this information to optimize their campaigns to better target their audience and increase their conversion rates. By understanding which marketing channels are driving the most offline conversions, marketers can adjust their budget to focus on those channels that are most effective.
Furthermore, tracking offline conversions can also help marketers to demonstrate the ROI of their digital marketing efforts to their clients or stakeholders. By providing concrete evidence of how online campaigns are driving offline sales, marketers can show the true value of their work and justify their budget.
There are a few steps to setting up offline conversion tracking which involve capturing click IDs from your marketing ads and then linking them to sales data in your CRM.
By linking a call tracking solution with your CRM and the platforms you run ads, you’ll be able to see which ad clicks led to sales, and adjust your marketing strategy to ads that provenly work.
Ready to learn more about offline conversion tracking? Keep reading below!
What are offline conversions?
As a digital marketer, you likely devote a considerable amount of time to monitoring conversions and evaluating the efficacy of your online campaigns. Keeping track of online conversion metrics such as website sales, newsletter signups, and video views enables you to gauge customer behavior and optimize your sales and marketing funnel accordingly.
Sometimes though, your digital marketing ads don’t lead to an online sale.
Offline conversions refer to the action of tracking and measuring the impact of online advertising on customer behavior that takes place outside of the digital environment. This means that offline conversions refer to any action or behavior that happens in the physical world, such as a customer placing a phone call or visiting a store and making a purchase in-person after being exposed to an online advertisement.
What is offline conversion tracking?
The process of monitoring and measuring customer interactions and conversions that take place outside the digital environment, such as in physical stores or over the phone, is known as offline conversion tracking.
By importing this data into platforms like Google Ads, Facebook Ads, or Microsoft Ads, businesses can evaluate the impact of their online marketing campaigns on offline conversions and gain a more comprehensive understanding of their overall marketing performance.
This way, you’ll know exactly which conversion processes begin online and end offline.
And which campaigns are worth the effort and ad spend!
What are the benefits of offline conversion tracking?
Offline conversion tracking is the secret weapon for every digital marketer!
By identifying which online channels are driving the most offline conversions and highest return on investment (ROI), businesses can allocate their marketing budget more effectively.
Tracking offline conversions also allows businesses to push back critical touchpoints in the customer journey to their ad platforms. This is particularly useful in service-based industries where there may be multiple touchpoints between contact, prospect, and sale. By using these touchpoints as conversion goals, businesses can obtain valuable insights to optimize their ad campaigns.
Moreover, in revenue models that are highly variable, capturing and optimizing for conversion value can help businesses focus on driving revenue rather than just sales. This is because client value and return on ad spend (ROAS) may vary depending on the market or campaign, and accurately capturing and optimizing for conversion value allows businesses to optimize their marketing efforts to generate maximum revenue.
How does offline conversion tracking work?
Offline conversion tracking can be done if you are advertising in various online advertising platforms such as Google Ads, Microsoft Ads, and Facebook Ads. The process involves obtaining a unique identifier, such as Microsoft Click ID or GCLID on Google, which tracks clicks to your landing page from an ad. This unique ID gathers information about the user, including their location, name, purchase, and the ad clicked, which is then recorded in your CRM platform to track leads and customers.
Another way to track offline conversions is through other methods like QR codes. There are different types of offline conversions that marketers can track, such as phone call conversions and in-store conversions. For phone call conversions, using a DNI script like Nimbata is necessary to set up a forwarding phone number and specify leads that you want to be tracked. Nimbata will then monitor the number of calls generated, and the call can be recorded as a conversion if it meets a specific duration requirement.
For in-store conversions, using mobile QR and UTM codes is a way to attribute online campaigns to offline sales. Google Ads can use mobile location data to determine if customers engaged with or viewed your ads before visiting your store. However, this method is only applicable if you have multiple physical store locations and high click and impression volumes. Additionally, you need sufficient store visit data that meets privacy thresholds, which is not publicly available.
Let’s take a look at how you can track phone conversions in the following platforms by using Nimbata’s technology.
Tracking phone call conversions in Google Ads
Looking for the full guide? Learn more about how to track offline conversions in Google Ads.
With Google’s offline conversion tracking, it’s possible to measure the sales resulting from your Google Ads campaigns, even if customers don’t make purchases online.
How it works
Step 1: User clicks on one of your Google Ads
Step 2: Google Ads will append the GCLID to the URL of the landing page
Step 3: The Nimbata script that runs on your website captures the GCLID and the whole customer journey until the customer calls
Step 4: When the call ends, Nimbata assigns the call to the visit that drove it and sends the GCLID to Google Ads – along with the value if the call resulted in a sale.
Setting up an offline conversion in Google Ads
To begin you need to setup a conversion action in your Google Ads account.
Go to Tools and Settings -> Measurement -> Conversions
Click on New Conversion Action
Click on Import
Click on Other data sources or CRMs and Track conversions from clicks
You will now setup the conversion by first setting the goal and action optimization. Since the phone call is a quality lead you should choose Qualified lead. If you are also passing a value – meaning the phone call resulted in a sale – then you should choose Converted lead.
Then you need to provide a Conversion Name, a value and count.
Finally hit create and continue
Next, and as a final step you need to set the method for uploading the offline conversions.
Select Uploads from the list and click Finish.
You now have successfully created the conversion in your Google Ads account.
Now we have to perform the necessary steps in your Nimbata account, so Nimbata sends the GCLIDs to this conversion, from the calls that you receive.
Automating Nimbata to send GCLIDs to Google Ads
Setting up your Nimbata account is super easy and can be done by following this thorough guide.
By placing the Nimbata DNI script on your website Nimbata will capture the GCLIDs and assign them to calls like this:
Since you don’t want to have to upload these manually each time, you can automate this process from within Nimbata.
First Navigate to Integrations from the menu on the left and click on Google Ads
Click on the button Sign in with Google and select the account which has access to Google Ads
Click on Allow to give Nimbata permission to send the GCLIDs to your offline conversion
Select the trigger, the ad account and in the list of conversions find the offline conversion you created in the previous steps.
That’s it! Nimbata will send GCLIDs to your offline conversion in Google Ads once per day.
Tracking phone call conversions in Facebook
Looking for the full guide? Read more on how to track offline conversions in Facebook.
How it works
Facebook offline conversions lets businesses leverage their offline events data – such as in-store purchases, over-the-phone bookings and qualified leads – to help power their digital campaigns.
By uploading customer information, such as names, email addresses, and phone numbers from your company’s CRM, or your call tracking platform to Facebook, you can track conversions offline. Facebook then matches this information with the data of users who engaged with your ads, and if a match is found, Facebook attributes the sale to your ad. This tool enables advertisers to assess the effectiveness of their marketing efforts.
There are 2 methods which you can use either as standalone or even better together!
Method 1: Automate Nimbata to send offline conversions by passing the FBCLID in event manager
Method 2: Manually uploading phone calls with Facebook’s event manger.
We will show how to perform both in the following sections.
Armed with this information, you can improve your ads to increase conversions and see how many offline sales are generated by your Facebook ads.
Why it matters!
The Apple iOS 14.8.1 privacy update has made it compulsory for apps to request users’ permission before tracking their activity on other companies’ websites and apps for ad delivery and data sharing with brokers. Facebook advertisers were negatively impacted by the update, as it limited their ability to track conversions, display targeted ads, and create lookalike and custom audiences.
However, businesses and advertisers can benefit from offline conversions in the post-iOS 14.8 era. Setting up offline conversions enables them to:
View performance breakdowns again: By demographic, location, platform, device, etc.
Moreover, setting up offline conversions alongside other tracking tools like Nimbata enables advertisers to capture all cross-channel conversions and attribute them correctly to their Facebook ads and ad sets.
What you need to setup offline conversions
1. Offline event datasets and an active Nimbata – Facebook integration
You’ll need to upload information about people’s offline actions to Facebook. You can connect your data to your campaigns in two ways: by using Facebook’s native offline event manager or/and integrating your Nimbata account with Facebook.
2. A Facebook ad account
You will need to have an active Facebook ad account. If you don’t have one you can create one here.
3. A Facebook Business Manager account
Business Manager lets businesses share and control access to their ad accounts, Pages and other assets on Facebook. You’ll need an account to create offline event sets.
Method 1: Automate Nimbata to send offline conversions
First, ensure that you have admin access to a Facebook Business Manager and a Facebook ad account.
Now let’s see step by step how you integrate Nimbata with Facebook Ads Manager:
- Head to Integrations – Facebook in your Nimbata account
- Click on the Button labeled “Login with Facebook”.
- Click on the “Continue” button.
- Click on the Continue button to grant Nimbata access to your Facebook ads.
- A confirmation message will inform you that your account has been successfully connected.
- To share your Facebook Pixel ID with Nimbata, click on the hyperlink or visit “Facebook Business Manager -> Business Settings -> Data Sources -> Pixels -> Partners”.
- Navigate to “Assign Partners”.
- Enter the Business Partner ID , enable the switch “Manage Pixel” and click on “Next”.
- In the Facebook Partners’ tab, you will see a pending request, sent to Nimbata.
- Once the partnership request is accepted, you will receive a Facebook notification.
- Now, Nimbata is listed as a partner for this specific Pixel ID.
- Next, go back to the app and select from the drop-down menu the Pixel you shared with Nimbata.
That’s it! Nimbata will send offline conversions as events in Facebook for each call you receive!
Method 2: Manually upload offline conversions with event manager
Go to Events Manager and click on the Green +Connect Data Sources button
Then, you are presented with the “Connect Data Sources” window. Select “Offline” and click “Continue”.
Create an offline event set
Add a “Name” and “Description” for your offline event set. Click “Create”.
Connect your ad account
Configure the “Assign ad accounts and set tracking” section. Turn on auto-tracking to streamline the process.
Configure user access and permissions
Here, you can select who can access your offline event set, configure the connected accounts, event management, and much more. Once completed, click “Assign”.
That’s it! Your offline event has been configured!
Upload offline event data using a CSV data file
You can now upload offline event data from your phone calls. Create a CSV data file with the phone calls you wish to be uploaded. This file should contain as much information as possible to ensure accurate reporting:
- Timestamps (accurate to the minute)
- Customer details (e.g., customer’s first and last name, email address, phone number)
- Location (e.g., country, city, state/province, zip code)
- Event name (e.g., booking, purchase, lead, other, etc…)
- Transaction value and currency
You can fetch these data from your CRM as Nimbata integrates with any CRM and sends call information, enriching the details you have for each customer.
Note that Facebook recommends uploading offline event data within 48 hours after event occurrence for optimal reporting.
Next click on upload events.
Click on Select CSV file and upload your CSV.
Then click on Next: Map Data
Facebook will review the data you are trying to upload and inform you for any errors that might need fixing.
After fixing the errors, click on Next: Review
You’ll then see how many rows are ready to be uploaded, your estimated match rate, and any additional warnings.
Click on Next: Review
When ready click on Start Upload
Please note that it takes about 15 minutes for Facebook to populate the data. After that, you will see the leads that are attributed to your Facebook ads.
Go to Ads Manager. Find the Offline Conversions column under Campaigns. There, you will be able to see your data.
Tracking phone call conversions in Microsoft Ads
Looking for the full guide? Read more about how to track offline conversions in Microsoft Ads.
Using Microsoft Ads is an effective way to reach a specific audience and advertise your product or service. It is commonly considered a more affordable option compared to Google Ads and is highly recommended for those seeking to increase traffic and conversions through paid advertising.
Although more marketers are utilizing Microsoft Ads, it remains difficult for many to connect paid sessions with broader customer journeys. However, by incorporating Nimbata with your Microsoft Ads account, you can bridge this gap and enhance your advertising efforts.
Let’s see how you can get Nimbata to automate sending of MSCLKIDs to Microsoft Ads!
How it works
Step 1: User clicks on one of your Microsoft Ads
Step 2: Microsoft Ads will append the MSCLKID to the URL of the landing page
Step 3: The Nimbata script that runs on your website captures the MSCLKID and the whole customer journey until the customer calls
Step 4: When the call ends, Nimbata assigns the call to the visit that drove it and sends the click ID back to Microsoft Ads as an offline conversion.
Setting up an offline conversion in Microsoft Ads
In Microsoft Ads navigate to: Conversion Tracking -> Conversion Goals and click on “Create Conversion Goal”
Give your conversion goal a name and select type=Offline conversions. Click Next.
Select the scope, value, count, conversion window that suits you best and check the box “Include in Conversions”.
Automating Nimbata to send MSCLKIDs to Microsoft Ads
First Navigate to Integrations from the menu on the left and click on Microsoft Ads
Click on the Button labeled “Connect Microsoft Ads”
A pop up window will appear were you can select the Microsoft Account you wish to connect. Make sure that the account you connect is the one you previously setup the conversion action, as described above.
Click on Yes to give permission to Nimbata to send call data to your Microsoft Account.
After completing the process, you will return back to Nimbata and see a confirmation message that your account has been successfully connected.
Select the trigger, the ad account and in the list of conversions find the offline conversion you created in the previous steps.
That’s it! Nimbata will send MSCLKIDs to your offline conversion in Micorosft Ads.
How to setup offline conversion tracking with Nimbata (Video tutorial)
Let’s face it.
Monitoring your website traffic, engagement, and purchases isn’t enough.
You’ve mastered Google Ads, Facebook Ads and Microsoft ads but you can train the algorithm to do even better!
And get the credit you deserve for all those warm leads you bring to your clients!
This is why offline conversion tracking is a must for every digital marketer in 2023.
With such rich data in hand, you can continuously improve your bidding strategy and prove why raising your budget is a solid idea!
Not comfortable setting this up yourself? Connect with one of our experts and we will point you towards the right way!