Rejoice! Google is Killing Last Click Attribution

This post was ghost-written at Raidious for the Senior Strategist,  Topher Howden.

When was the last time you were convinced to purchase a product or service based on the information you read from a single piece of information on the Internet? That is, you saw a banner ad for a new pair of shoes, clicked on the ad, and immediately bought the shoes. This has probably never happened and we as marketers understand that it’s not supposed to. But last-click attribution tells us that the last ad you see before making the purchase takes all the responsibility for the purchase. Pretty unfair, right?

The idea of last-click attribution suggests that analytics tools and marketers attribute 100% of a conversion to the last piece of the marketing funnel before the purchase is made. Purchases never work this way! Remember, the buyer journey isn’t a one step process (we can dream though, right?). Last-click attribution gives all of the credit to the final interaction a buyer experiences, despite the many interactions they had with the product before the purchase.

Marketers have known for a while that last-click is not a useful concept, but existing solutions are hard to set-up and aren’t integrated with ad tools, making it harder to actually use the information you gather.

Google swooped in to save the day once again and has announced its shiny new product, Google Attribution! Gone are the days of last-click attribution!

Data Driven Attribution

Instead of attributing 100% of a conversion to the last click or final touchpoint of the buyer’s journey, Google Attribution assigns credit to each individual step in the buyer’s journey. Their first interaction, their last, and everything in between! It collects data from AdWords, Google Analytics, and DoubleClick Search before it runs a selected “attribution model” to package the data into an optimized report. From now on, the single ad won’t get all the credit.

If you’re a regular in web analytics products, you’ll already be familiar with more robust models of attribution, and even Google has previously introduced other attribution models in Google Analytics. The specific Attribution product, however, makes their intention clear and opens the door to more transparent relations between offline and online advertising.