GDPR – Advice

Has your inbox been flooded with updated privacy policies and data processing terms in the past few months? The reason is a new legislation in Europe, called GDPR, which makes it harder for businesses to keep personal data, as well as governing how businesses can collect and use information.

GDPR stands for General Data Protection Regulation, and from May 25 it provides enhanced data protection rights to EU citizens. In the future, the legislation is predicted to move beyond Europe, particularly in light of recent cases where established analytics companies have been accused of obtaining and using people’s data without their consent.

As people become more wary of how their data is being stored and used, we expect that more stringent laws such as GDPR will come into play elsewhere in the world.

If you are a business and have a website, mailing list, shop or any kind of facility for collecting and/or processing data (which is virtually every business), you should be aware of GDPR and what you should do to be compliant.

  • Consult a lawyer or legal firm’s advice if you are in the data collection or processing business.
  • Apply logic to the new policies. With every decision, think about the risk to you/your business and whether you need full overhauls of privacy policies or just tweaks. Most countries already have data protection laws, so if your business complies with existing laws, the GDPR update is simply a further tightening of what’s already in place.
  • Don’t panic. These new laws are good for all of us! The new legislation gives the power of information back to the people that should have it: you!
  • Making large organisations compliant presents the biggest challenge, where there is a lot of information stored in numerous places and managed by many groups. If this is you, consider how your business can maintain stringent data policies. What tweaks need to be made to your existing technology? What training will your teams need and what permissions will need altering for consumers? You’ll also need to look into what governance tools you can use to catch instances of PII (public identifiable information) leakage, as well as maintaining data quality and accuracy.
  • Take a look at Sparkline’s Web and Mobile analytics auditor to help enhance the quality of your data and limit PII leakage in scalable ways.

Disclaimer: Sparkline are data people, not legal people. We recommend that you seek proper legal advice for any business decisions, just as we did!

Partnership to aid e-commerce entrepreneurs, SMEs to become more nimble

Partnership to aid e-commerce entrepreneurs, SMEs to become more nimble

  • Partners Nanyang Polytechnic, SNEF, Sparkline, and Singapore University of Social Sciences
  • More than 1,000 people are expected to complete courses between April to December 2018

(From left) Lazada Group Platform Governance senior VP Michelle Yip; Lazada Singapore CEO Alexis Lanternier; Nanyang Polytechnic deputy principal Edward Ho; Singapore National Employers Federation assistant executive director Stephen Yee; Sparkline co-founder and managing partner Aleetza Senn; Singapore University of Social Sciences president Professor Cheong Hee Kiat; and Tech2Cool CEO Prasenjit Sarkar

IN A first-of-its kind partnership, Southeast Asian e-commerce company Lazada Group is joining hands with higher learning institutes and data analytics experts to jointly develop online and offline training courses for entrepreneurs and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to become more nimble and capitalise on the e-commerce boom in the region.

Lazada formalised the partnership with Nanyang Polytechnic’s Singapore Institute of Retail Studies (SIRS), Singapore National Employers Federation (SNEF), Singapore-based data analytics firm Sparkline, and Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS), through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

This is part of Lazada’s commitment to empower sellers with the right tools and build an ecosystem within which they can grow. In Singapore, the company is taking this one step further as it sees synergies with the government’s go-digital push and the growth of e-commerce in Singapore and Southeast Asia. It hopes to work with partners to bring these programmes to the rest of its markets.

“Thanks to the expertise of the partners that we have brought together today, we are able to enrich the offerings on Lazada University to help our 155,000 sellers across the region become more knowledgeable in e-commerce operations and opportunities both in Singapore and Southeast Asia. Lazada sees it as our mission to help the sellers on our platform grow and are happy to work with like-minded organisations,” said Alexis Lanternier, chief executive officer, Lazada Singapore.

More than 1,000 people, ranging from existing and new sellers on Lazada, SME owners, professionals, managers and operational staff, are expected to complete courses between April to December 2018. Topics covered include supply chain and inventory management, introduction to data analytics and how business owners can sell efficiently and effectively in Southeast Asia’s e-commerce market.

All courses are in English. The courses will be available on Lazada University’s new online learning management system. The new system enables sellers to access training materials on their phones, making training more convenient and on-the-go. Singaporeans above 25-year-old will be able to use their SkillsFuture Credit to offset for two existing courses – Getting started on Lazada (Onboarding) and Implement Innovative Change.

Sparkline Shows Leading Indonesian Publisher, Kaskus, How To Increase Engagement & Revenue For Mobile Customers

KASKUS is a leading user-generated content publisher in Indonesia where users exchange information and buy / sell goods on forums. More than 90% of KASKUS users are Indonesian – of which most are young men. As of April 2015, KASKUS has at least 28 million unique users each month, making it the largest user-generated content publisher in Indonesia.

KASKUS wanted to serve its users relevant ads to their age, gender and interests so as to create better user engagement and higher-quality traffic for advertisers. Furthermore, they wanted to users who have shown interest in mobile devices and were more likely to purchase them.

KASKUS reached out to Sparkline in order to create a Google Analytics 360 segment for “Mobile Intenders.”

Sparkline was able to show the KASKUS team a fresh way to approach the challenge: Create a powerful new Google Analytics 360 segment for Mobile Intenders and ensure that it can be targeted within DoubleClick For Publishers (DFP)

In order to leverage their own audience data to serve the most relevant ads, Sparkline devised for Kaskus the following steps.

1.Set up Analytics 360 to collect valuable first-party data using Custom Dimensions. This feature enabled them to analyze data that Analytics 360 did not collect with a default implementation, such as Thread Id (unique forum thread identifier) and Forum Section (groups similar forums into sections such as Android and The Lounge).

2.Conducted a segmentation analysis by looking into the Analytics 360 data to understand user behavior on site through their interaction with mobile-focused forums. One particular segment emerged as potentially valuable, users actively searching for and discussing mobile phone brands and features for future purchase. Using Analytics 360 segmentation capabilities, KASKUS created an Audience of “Mobile Intenders” .

Kaskus Screenshot

3.Last, using the Analytics 360 Audience Sharing feature with Doubleclick For Publishers (DFP), the “Mobile Intenders” segment was shared with DFP Audience (and Doubleclick Ad Exchange) where advertisers are able to bid on the audience-targeted inventory directly.

The new audience KASKUS created in Analytics 360 was in high demand by advertisers and as it is available on DFP Audience, it can be targeted by programmatic advertisers, particularly by handset brands seeking to win consideration from users intending to purchase a mobile phone.

Sparkline were able to show KASKUS that by using Google Analytics 360 and DFP Audience together they could achieve a twofold CTR uplift and more than triple CPM on audience-targeted Ad Exchange inventory when compared to open-auction inventory.

To learn more about how KASKUS achieved those results read the full case study.

Sparkline helps insurance meta search engine ​GoBear nail data analytics from the outset

Sparkline helps insurance meta search engine ​GoBear nail data analytics from the outset

Overview

In the first few years of setting up a business, there are so many things for a fledgling company to think about – hiring, managing cashflow, growing sales to name a few. The notion of analysing their customer data from the outset by making sure they have the right measurement tools and processes in place can appear just too daunting or is unlikely to register as a priority. However, taking steps at this early stage in a company’s development to get data analytics right can pay dividends and avoid a lot of headaches further down the line.

As a start business, GoBear had the foresight and engaged the technical and analytical support from analytics consultancy Sparkline, to enable them to get it right from the outset.

Sparkline helped GoBear in building dashboards and setting up Google Analytics Premium to gain deeper insights on user behaviour on the GoBear website.

Background

Launched in early 2015, GoBear is an insurance search engine that allows users to browse for car, travel and health insurance via price and usage. It does not sell insurance directly – users are automatically transferred to the insurer’s or agent’s website to make their purchases. GoBear is headquartered in Singapore and its team has been chosen based on experience, knowledge and ambition to actively transform the process of online shopping by offering a fast, concise and coherent comparison of car and travel insurance plans.

Headed by Andre Hesselink, this free service compares hundreds of insurance policies, providing users with a transparent and unbiased comparison of prices, coverage and other policy features in just a few seconds.

GoBear realised that Singaporeans were not just interested in the cheapest plan, but the plan that represented the best value for their needs. This, coupled with a user-friendly site (both on mobile and desktop), is the heartbeat of GoBear’s vision and strategy. The mobile and tablet-friendly GoBear platform allows users to compare the car and travel insurance offerings of a variety of companies and then purchase the chosen plan, all on a single platform. Some of the insurers on GoBear’s platform include Citibank, UOI, MSIG, QBE, NTUC Income and Great Eastern to name a few.

Challenge

Having worked in previous online ventures for many years, Hesselink was already aware of the importance of data analytics to the growth of the GoBear business.

However, there was a recognition that greater customization of their analytics capabilities was necessary to ensure a positive online experience for customers from the outset, particularly as purchasing insurance online is still a new concept for many Singaporeans used to buying insurance through a physical broker.

Solutions

To help them develop the level of customization required, GoBear brought in the team at Sparkline. Sparkline implemented Google Analytics Premium as the central analytics platform to provide a greater understanding of customer behaviour and preference. The implementation was customised to align with GoBear’s key business objectives.

Sparkline then created a customized dashboard for GoBear, built on top of the Google Analytics Premium (GAP) API, simplifying the monitoring process and enabling the team to analyze customer behaviour as they navigate through the site.

The dashboard provides a visualization of how users are interacting with the GoBear website and which areas of the user experience require attention.

Results

What began as an engagement for Sparkline helping GoBear to implement Google Analytics Premium, grew into a consultancy which helped GoBear leverage actionable insights from the data to improve customer and business intelligence.

As a result of having access to Google Analytics data and dashboards, GoBear now has insights into how users are interacting with the site, thereby offering GoBear users an even more enriched experience.

The dashboard provides the GoBear team an overview of the key metrics, with presentation customised to their business model, that has helped in quicker and more relevant decision making.

Testimonial

As a company that’s based online, understanding user data is a key component in our business in order to get insight into what our users want, and how we can improve to help them even more efficiently. Sparkline has been integral in supporting our growth.

Andre Hesselink, CEO

Online shopping in Indonesia is booming. Are you ready to take advantage?

Online shopping in Indonesia is booming. Are you ready to take advantage?

$3.5 billion: the amount in sales e­commerce sites in Indonesia are set to generate this year. A princely sum, and one that is expected to grow further. 16% of Indonesia’s population purchased something off the Internet via a PC, and 9% did so over their phones, in just December 2014 alone (We Are Social). These numbers are only going to go up as Indonesians become more Internet savvy.

This boom in online shopping heralds an exciting time, but how then, to keep the good times going? The marketplace is teeming with businesses being labelled ‘the next big thing’ like Jualo, Fabelio and HappyFresh (Tech in Asia). To stay ahead of the competitive curve, you need to understand your customers’ needs and desires, and data analytics is an invaluable tool to help you do this.

The world of data can appear overwhelming, but with the right kind of help, you too can boost your business intelligence. And it’s not always about huge changes. As a first step, here are the top four areas you should start measuring to ensure you stay one step ahead, by giving customers what they want, when they want it.

CUSTOMER ACQUISITION COSTS

Indonesia had 83 million internet users in 2014, and SingPost eCommerce predicts that number to swell to almost 103 million by 2016. Just 4.6 million Indonesians made a purchase online in 2013, but twice as many will be shoppers in the online marketplace by 2016. Huge potential for attracting new customers. But could you be spending your marketing budget more wisely?

Data analysis can help you pinpoint audience segments more likely to convert into loyal paying customers, and the platforms where you can reach them. Undertaking an analysis of the characteristics of this customer pool and playing to this can also help your business stand out. Your data might show you that a customer has been looking for a particular product, so you can personalise advertising and site content that pushes this, or similar products they might be interested in.

Similarly, more Indonesians are taking their shopping online while stuck in traffic jams to save time, spending on average two and a half hours on mobile internet per day, so are you targeting these people the right way? Rather than wasting your money on people who aren’t interested, getting to understand where your most valuable potential customers are spending their time and how best to reach them there will help your marketing budget work harder for you.

CHURN

So now you’ve got your audience, how do you convert them to paying customers and retain them? Churn, or your customer attrition rate, is the percentage of visitors who never return to your site. Data analysis can pinpoint what makes people leave, providing the insights you need to address specific concerns. It could be something as simple as a button in the wrong place that is turning your customers off. It could also mean you need to put more effort into re­targeting your audience.

Pitching them again can also make them aware of current and future products you have available, and drive demand. A ‘test and iterate’ approach using data analysis is crucial here ­ baby steps! ­ to identify what’s going wrong, and where. Making targeted improvements can help keep customer satisfaction high across the board, so you retain more customers, and, crucially, keep them coming back for more.

PURCHASE FUNNEL/SHOPPING CART ABANDONMENT

Placing an item in the shopping cart signals an intent to buy, so it can be frustrating when customers don’t take that final step to make an actual purchase. Where are people dropping off in the sales process and why? People give up their decision to purchase for all kinds of reasons, like when confronted with complex payment processes or unexpected shipping fees.

Data analysis can help you find out exactly where and why customers abandon ship, so you can fix these issues and provide adequate support that will drive more purchases. By making the purchasing experience a smooth and user­ friendly one, you’ll be able to convert more people into paying customers, and entice them to stay rather than go elsewhere.

AVERAGE ORDER VALUE

As a retailer, your Average Order Value (AOV) is an absolutely key metric you need to measure. Paying attention to how much each customer spends on average will give you a good idea of how much revenue you can generate. The higher this number is, the better. Watch your AOV closely, and diagnose any changes you see. It might have to do with your checkout process, the items you’re selling or the marketing acquisition process.

One simple trick can also make this measurement work even harder for you, and help you identify where your best customers are coming from. Segment your visitors and marketing campaigns in your AOV measurements, and compare that to a baseline AOV from your current volume of traffic. That way, you can see where your marketing money is best spent, and focus your future attention on campaigns that will help you capture more big spenders.


It’s clear that there’s a world of opportunity out there for ecommerce businesses. But if you don’t make the change to a data­ driven strategy, you won’t see the best results. In a mobile driven market, brands can become more accessible by investing in digital ­ will you join the ranks of the top Indonesian brands who have already done so? You don’t need to feel left behind. By adopting the tactics outlined above you can gain a competitive advantage.

You don’t have to go it alone. There are experts out there who can help you navigate and understand your data, by helping you to pick out the best in breed solutions and technologies that best fit your particular business. Then you too can be part of the ecommerce boom.


Vinoaj Vijeyakumaar

Managing Partner & Co-Founder

Sparkline

Vinoaj Vijeyakumaar is Managing Partner and Co‐Founder of Sparkline, one of Asia’s fastest growing integrated data analysis consultancies, working with some of the world’s biggest brands to help them effectively manage, and interpret their customer data, enabling them to better understand, engage and communicate with their customers. Clients include e‐commerce success story Luxola, dtac, Bangkok Airways, IKEA and Fairmont Hotels & Resorts.

 

 

Investor Piece: Why Analysing Customer Data Makes Good Investment Sense

E­commerce in Indonesia is booming. Ardent Capital’s estimates put the B2C e­commerce market at US$2.6 billion, while CNBC believes that the sector’s total market revenue will surpass US$4 billion by 2016. Everyone wants a piece of this success, and investors interested in cultivating the next Amazon or eBay have enabled businesses like Tokopedia to raise hundreds of millions of dollars in funding. The future looks bright, but there’s no such thing as asure­win bet, and a major concern for investors is ensuring your capital is being spent wisely. Too many Silicon Valley start­ups take a “scale first, sustainability later” approach, and a majority of Indonesian online platforms seem to be following suit, much to their detriment. The plan may seem workable, but it’s neither viable nor effective as a long­term strategy. There are smarter ways to success, and as an investor you have the power to motivate companies to take a forward looking approach. A deep analysis of customer data will help maximise a company’s capital and raise sustainable returns.

All e­commerce businesses with any sense are undertaking data tracking and analysis, but too much effort is being spent on superficial projects that measure growth statistics only in the broadest of strokes. Companies basing their decisions on these analyses are only capable of making knee jerk reactions, and will require a constant stream of spending in order to maintain their strategy. Silicon Valley alumni Sam Altman recounted seeing companies burning through millions of dollars a month on customer acquisition, but not concerning themselves with attracting the right customers. With no long­term view on building customer loyalty nor increasing their returns on investment, these start­ups crashed and burned as a result. Similar scenes are playing out in Indonesia, where more than $800 million will be spent on digital ads in Indonesia this year. How much of this is being wasted? The marketplace is highly competitive, but that’s not a good reason to lose sight of future viability. Most dot­com entrepreneurs in Indonesia are young and know their product, but may be less aware of the wider business landscape, so savvier investors ought to help them pivot from a reactive stance to cultivating a long­term strategy.

Building a foundation of business longevity from the start is completely doable for any e­commerce company that makes it a point to truly understand their customer data. There is so much more that can be done with it beyond collecting it as a means of demonstrating growth. Analysing an audience’s behaviour and habits can help e­commerce businesses in so many ways. For instance, customer acquisition costs can be reduced through identifying the platforms where marketing efforts have brought in the largest number of large order sizes or repeat customers, resulting in more targeted and cost­effective spending. Being able to take the pulse of what customers want and need will also help e­commerce platforms improve on their product and service offerings, thereby generating greater customer loyalty. And with so many e­commerce customers doing their shopping on the go while stuck in traffic, being able to provide a smooth user experience can also enables businesses to gain a greater foothold in the market. Sound data analysis provides insights that pave the way for sound business decisions.

For too many companies, performing such data analytics is often seen as a daunting task, one they leave as a last step, or perform only after they reach a certain size. Such thinking overlooks the fact that early adopters of data analysis will have a better understanding of the market than anyone else, and the ability to be much more strategic about their investments from the start. Point this out to the e­commerce companies you have invested in, and motivate them to take this important step. Incorporating data analysis to an e­commerce business doesn’t always mean a dramatic overhaul of the company ­ it can be done in small and manageable increments. The most crucial part is finding a no­nonsense data analytics consultancy who will take the time to understand the unique needs of the business and recommend only the most suitable tools. The best consultancies can not only provide actionable insights through conducting meaningful analyses of a company’s current business health, but also empower companies to perform future analyses on their own, through structured training programmes that will educate existing employees. Done well, data analysis can help a company streamline operations, drive sales and increase their manoeuvrability through the good times and bad. Which has to be good news for any investor.

Aleetza Senn

Managing Partner & Co-Founder

Sparkline

Why you should mind the (data) skills gap

Why you should mind the (data) skills gap – and what you can do to side-step it

The way a business interacts with its customers, and what those customers expect from businesses is changing, and changing at rapid speed. As consumers, we are all becoming more comfortable with sharing aspects of our lives in the digital world, whether that’s buying products and services online or sharing our innermost thoughts on social media. Our willingness to engage with and embrace everything online provides brands with an enormous opportunity to develop a much more purposeful and meaningful relationship with us as current or potential customers. Every click of a button, every share of a page – all these actions now hold meaning or indicate intention. For brands to understand and make sense of these actions, in a way which will positively impact their business, new skills are needed. Individuals who are able to analyse customer data and understand how to translate that analysis into meaningful business decisions are hot property as those with data analytics skills and experience are in short supply.

According to a 2015 Harvey Nash-KPMG survey of Chief Information Officers across the Asia Pacific region, a vast majority believe that their organizations would be better able to keep up with the pace of change if not for this pesky skills gap. Data analytics is gaining traction, but there remains a lack of qualified individuals even as demand continues to boom. However, the solution is right there in front of you, in your existing pool of employees. Putting the power of information in the hands of your business, can and should start with enhancing the potential of people who already know your brand inside and out.

Data analytics as a skill-set needs to be demystified. Good data “scientists” in businesses perform very much the same tasks as a business analyst would. So no, you don’t need someone with a PhD in statistics, but you do need someone who possesses an in-depth understanding of your business and its concerns. Regular skills training can help build greater capabilities among existing teams, and help your company catch up to the latest analytic trends, making the most of your data and opportunities. Training people who are already familiar with the needs of your business will enable you to better connect with customers at scale. It’s not just about getting up to speed, but also being able to stay on-trend with future developments. Equipping your current employees with data analytic skills can also provide a foundation for them to drive new product innovation, based on new understandings of consumer demand.

How then to go about finding the right training for your people? The most important thing is to find trainers who understand the language and world of business, who can help you translate raw data insights into actionable business insights. Cleaning up your data will do very little unless they can teach you how to effectively utilize this information for your business. Look for a training company that takes an honest and straightforward approach to the world of data, who can cover both the theoretical and practical aspects of data analytics. Get trainers who empower their trainees with an understanding of analytics that will help them get to the heart of information and discern usable insights. Some might try to sell you technology that isn’t right for your particular needs, so find one who will take the time to understand what it is that drives your business, who can point out the right tools for you, and teach you how to use them well. Hire trainers who don’t shy away from answering the difficult questions about data analytics.

Through training your staff, it is entirely possible to cleverly side-step the skills gap instead of waiting on the vagaries of the hiring pool. The people you already have are in the best position to do your brand a world of good in the new online marketplace, from finding the right audiences for your marketing efforts, to making changes to your digital infrastructure and therefore better serving your customers. The sooner you take action, the sooner your business will benefit. Skills gap? What skills gap?

Aleetza Senn

Managing Partner & Co-Founder

Sparkline

Unravelling the mysteries of media attribution

The Mysterious World of Media Attribution:  what it is and why you should embrace it

In 1929, John Wanamaker, one of the earliest US proponents of advertising and marketing, said: “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is, I don’t know which half.” Sometimes it seems as if little has changed. Despite decades of technological advancements, the explosion of digital and more people living (and purchasing)  in a multi-screen, multi-channel world, there is still little tracking or measurement of a customer’s online interactions and activities which may (finally) result in a purchase. And this is despite the technology being available for almost a decade to enable practitioners to see how different channels affect behaviour and therefore how to assign a value to them as part of a marketing campaign. Enter media attribution, a statistical model that can help make the task of measurement much simpler and therefore the decision-making on digital campaigns much more informed. Everyone in marketing talks about media attribution.  And CMOs are well aware that it’s an area that demands their attention but adoption is not always easy and can be a real challenge, for a number of reasons. Many CMOs are ready to dip their toe in the water but need help navigating the different attribution models available as well as help in gaining the confidence needed to often instigate a change in mindset within their organization that comes with a better understanding of attribution and how it can really benefit a company’s bottom line.

Most CMOs still rely on ‘last click’ media attribution models, even though they know that this method ignores the entire decision-making funnel, simply because they don’t know how to move beyond it. There are reasons for this, some of which are revealed in a recent Adobe Digital Directions Report which found that the main challenges faced by CMOs in executing digital campaigns included budget limitations (50% of respondents) and limited capabilities, knowledge and experience (47%). In addition, and probably due partly to budget constraints but also often company culture, marketers aren’t given the freedom to fail – essential when there is no ‘one size fits all’ attribution model and to get the best out of any campaign measurement takes constant refinement and iteration. Much easier is to continue to doggedly use a measurement model that, whilst it ignores customer behaviour, simplifies the media buy.

But consider this. Multi-screen/cross-device usage is higher in Asia than anywhere else in the world. A recent Nielsen Southeast Asia Digital Consumer Report, which examined the digital media habits and attitudes of Southeast Asian consumers, revealed that Singaporean digital consumers were the heaviest internet users in the region, averaging 25 hours online per week, followed closely by digital consumers in the Philippines and Malaysia who averaged 21.5 hours and 19.8 hours online per week. A recently released 2014 AdReaction Report from Millward Brown shows that multiscreen users in the Asia Pacific region consume seven hours of screen media per day in a five hour period. This is mostly on their smartphones, ahead on all digital channels on the global averages, except TV.

So there you have it. Millions of people, potential consumers of your product, online, always switched on. And yet, the complexity of the digital space and customer behaviour within it, coupled with internal pressures to get it right first time sees many CMOs just too nervous to risk  trying another approach. The result of this mindset however is that accurately assigning a digital marketing budget (which  79% of CMOs are looking to increase this year, according to CMO Council Asia Pacific) becomes a complete shot in the dark.

Adoption of multi-media attribution models which can measure micro conversions and therefore help you to understand the role each activity plays in getting to the ‘macro conversion’ or purchase means you can then accurately attribute value and budget. Common sense, right? So why aren’t more CMOs taking that step? Any topic involving the words ‘digital’, ‘multi-channel’ and ‘data’, can strike fear into the hearts of many a marketer and with budgets always being scrutinised and squeezed, it’s no wonder that many avoid making what they perceive would be complex, risky and above all, expensive changes. But that’s not the reality.

Firstly, we’re not talking about making big sweeping changes. Step by step experimentation and testing is key to successful media attribution in a multi-channel environment, given the shifting nature of digital. Unfortunately the good old days when marketing used to be simple, where you could push your messages out to people through the right combination of repetition, are long gone. So it doesn’t make sense to make big scale changes when the digital landscape is changing every day.

We’re also not talking about expensive changes. Multi-touch attribution is no longer a technology only for those with mega budgets. Most publishers and many platforms provide metrics which enable you to evaluate effectiveness beyond last- click. Affordable technologies now also exist that allow marketers to evaluate performance beyond the last-click.

The fear of the unknown is also a barrier to change so seek help from experts who have the technical know-how to be able to pinpoint and analyse your customer data, and who can then work with you to turn that analysis into real and measurable changes you can make to your marketing strategy by helping you identify the points in the online customer journey which require attention or investment.

Picture this. Imagine being able to know why you spend a certain amount of your budget on a particular  digital channel or medium and what the implications are if you don’t? And imagine understanding the influence every channel has on your customer’s purchase-making decisions and that by just tweaking a few variables, you can influence that decision-making and therefore your bottom line, literally overnight? Don’t you think it’s worth taking that step into the unknown for benefits this great?

Aleetza Senn

Managing Partner & Co-Founder

Sparkline

14% increase in revenue for Skydive Beach and Beyond

Skydive the Beach and Beyond have built a thriving business catering to the thrill seeker. Taking their first plunge back in 1998 they’ve grown from a small beachfront outfit based in Wollongong, NSW to an Australia wide skydiving business with 13 drop zones. Serving a digitally savvy clientele for more than 15 years Skydive the Beach and Beyond discovered their website visits weren’t translating into conversions.

Taking a dive

While their business website was certainly bringing in potential daredevils, it wasn’t translating into paying customers. With an eye to increase conversions Skydive the Beach and Beyond brought on analytics and A/B testing experts, Sparkline, to see what was stopping consumers taking the plunge.

An initial investigation of the Skydive website revealed a four step process before reaching the confirmation page. Building a goal funnel in Google Analytics, Sparkline determined potential jumpers were bailing out when they needed to enter their full address details and at the payment page. An additional stumbling block required customers to enter the name, phone and email details of any friends joining them for the jump.

Address pages go head to head

Having pinpointed what was causing customers to bail out before purchase Sparkline, partnering with the Optimizely platform, ran an A/B experiment on the address details page. After liaising with Skydive they discovered the business didn’t require full address details, or the names of jumping partners. All that information could be collected at the jumpzone.

 

Armed with this information Sparkline and Optimizely tested three variations on the details page. The first shortened the fields to just name, email and mobile. The second asked for the address details but installed an auto-fill option and the third remained unchanged.

Variation one: Shortened form fields

Original

Variation two: auto-fill

Variation 2

Original

 

And the winner is…

After running for 98 days the page with the address fields removed proved the most successful. Compared to the other variations less fields increased the conversions to the payment page by 13.4%. The experiment showed extra fields were acting as an obstacle with the goal funnel conversion rate improving by 20.36%. Skydive went ahead and launched the slimmed down details page.

Performance Summary

Since implementing the stripped back details page Skydive the Beach and Beyond have enjoyed a nearly 15% increase in the number of successful transactions. In just a month since changing their sign up pages as a result of the A/B experiment their revenue is up 14.29%.

Anthony Boucaut, Director of Skydive the Beach and Beyond: “Whilst we’re extremely happy with the results, I didn’t plan on having to buy another plane to cater for it – but we will be now! We will also be focusing a significant portion of our marketing budget towards continuing AB testing via Optimizely and overall website improvements with Sparkline.”

 

Authors: Zin Ko Hlaing (Data Analyst) and Vinoaj Vijeyakumaar (Managing Partner & Co-Founder)