INDUSTRY:
eCommerce and retail

Shining a light on ad spend ROI to eliminate waste and optimize campaign performance

By integrating Invoca with Adobe Experience Cloud, YDesign Group is able to put more money behind the right campaigns and develop a new new bidding strategy that delivers bottom-line results.
37%
increase in return on ad spend
Eliminated wasted spend
on underperforming marketing campaigns
Shining a light on ad spend ROI to eliminate waste and optimize campaign performance
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Now that we can track calls with Invoca, we know how much of our call center revenue is being driven by phone calls. We can give more precise targets to our marketing team and feel more confident that we are bidding on ads that will drive profitability for the company.
Jesse Teske
Web Analytics Manager at YDesign Group

The Mission

YDesign Group, LLC, headquartered in Walnut Creek, Calif., is a family of online-led retailers that offer lighting, fans, and home furnishings. In 2001, the company launched its flagship brand, YLighting, which offers an expansive, curated collection of modern and contemporary indoor and outdoor lighting. YLighting’s experts can also help customers design sophisticated lighting systems. 

YDesign Group sells products to consumers and trade professionals through its YLighting.com, Lumens.com, and YLiving.com websites, as well as through catalogs. YDesign Group’s customers often spend a lot of time researching products and considering design ideas before making a purchase — and many place their orders by phone after calling for pricing and other information. Because of this, the company invests heavily in paid search campaigns to help drive phone orders. However, for years it had very little insight into how those campaigns were performing.  

Many assumptions were made about what keywords we should bid on to drive traffic to our call center. But really, we had no idea if those keywords were delivering ROI.
Jesse Teske, web analytics manager at YDesign Group

The Challenge

YDesign Group’s lack of insight into paid search campaign performance was due largely to the fact that it did not have a call tracking and analytics solution. “Even though we’re a lighting company, we were in the dark,” said Teske.

After evaluating different options, YDesign Group chose Invoca’s AI-powered call tracking and analytics solution. A key selling point, said Teske, is Invoca’s native integration with Adobe Experience Cloud. “We use a custom attribution model for our web revenue, and we need to make sure we are giving credit to all the marketing channels that touch the customer journey.”

Invoca integrates with Adobe in two primary ways: attribution for optimization and segmentation for personalization and targeting. By using Invoca and Adobe together, YDesign Group is able to bring new insights to Adobe Analytics. It can look at online conversions as well as phone calls and phone call conversions alongside the marketing channels that are driving those calls. And the company can use that information to adjust its spend in those marketing channels to make sure it’s driving the highest return on ad spend (ROAS) possible. 

We let the machine learning models in Google Ads really start to use our Invoca data so we could understand where we needed to tweak our bidding strategy for keywords. And that’s when we started to see the efficiency gains.
Jesse Teske, web analytics manager at YDesign Group

The Resolution

Listening and Learning from Call Data
Because YDesign Group had never used a call tracking and analytics solution before, Teske said the company used a metered ramp-up with Invoca. “Once Invoca was in place and the integration with Adobe was set up, we spent about two months just listening and learning,” he said. “We had Invoca flowing data back into Google Ads as a secondary conversion, but we didn’t immediately include it in our bidding strategy. We wanted to vet the data to see what it was really telling us before we started making changes.”

One thing YDesign Group learned quickly is that some customers are price shopping. “Many of our products are major design decisions — and big investments — so our customers tend to spend a lot of time doing research and looking for the best price before making a purchase. With Invoca, we could see customers calling YLighting for pricing information, and then literally doing the same thing with Lumens 10 minutes later.”

Discovering Efficiencies and Optimizations with Invoca Data
These discoveries gave YDesign Group the confidence to go much deeper with its call tracking and analysis with Invoca. “We let the machine learning models in Google Ads really start to use our Invoca data so we could understand where we needed to tweak our bidding strategy for keywords. And that’s when we started to see the efficiency gains.”

Data insights from Invoca soon made it clear to YDesign Group that several of its pricey legacy campaigns for its partner brands were not delivering the desired ROI — by a longshot. “We were bidding to be the first or second search result, and the costs-per-click were some of the highest in our paid search campaigns,” said Teske. “But we discovered that the ad spend wasn’t driving call conversions. Most of the calls we received were for customer service or replacements.”

That revelation prompted significant dialing back of ad spend on such campaigns. “We have seen a year-over-year efficiency gain in ROAS of 37%, on average.”

We’ve stopped spending money on campaigns that aren’t profitable and now channel more money into areas that are working for us. We’ve optimized our bidding strategy so we can target a tighter audience that is more likely to convert.
Jesse Teske, web analytics manager at YDesign Group

Teske added, “We’re definitely seeing bottom-line benefits from using Invoca. We’ve stopped spending money on campaigns that aren’t profitable and now channel more money into areas that are working for us. We’ve optimized our bidding strategy so we can target a tighter audience that is more likely to convert.”

While YDesign Group likely would have shut down some of its unprofitable legacy campaigns in time, Teske said the decisions would be based on guesswork if the company wasn’t using the Invoca platform. “Invoca has been instrumental in giving us the confidence that we are doing the right thing when we turn off a campaign, remove keywords from our marketing strategy, or decide to optimize a campaign,” he said.

Using Invoca to Precisely Target Ad Spend
YDesign Group now includes data insights from Invoca in its daily dashboard for tracking web marketing key performance indicators (KPIs). “The call data gives us a much better view of how certain channels are performing,” said Teske. “It also prevents us from pulling back on spend when a campaign is driving call conversions but may not be hitting other KPIs.”

Additionally, the Invoca platform has helped YDesign Group to refine its ROAS model. “We had an assumed ROAS — the bare minimum that we thought we needed to hit to be profitable,” Teske said. “Now that we can track calls with Invoca, we know how much of our call center revenue is being driven by phone calls. So, we can give more precise targets to our marketing team and feel more confident that we are bidding on ads that will drive profitability for the company.”

The Results

  • 37% increase in return on ad spend
Now that we can track calls with Invoca, we know how much of our call center revenue is being driven by phone calls. We can give more precise targets to our marketing team and feel more confident that we are bidding on ads that will drive profitability for the company.
Jesse Teske, web analytics manager at YDesign Group

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