Search Scrum: Paid Search Marketing Optimization | Round Barn Labs

Are you combining Chocolate (Paid Marketing) + Peanut Butter Conversion Rate Optimization?

September 13, 2022

Conversion Rate Optimization
Tye DeGrange

Pro Tip: If not, you’re missing out on compounding gains and a delicious treat

Paid Marketing & Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) go together like Chocolate and Peanut Butter!

In every single one of my roles in the fun filled world of performance marketing (from display programmatic to affiliate marketing to paid search and paid social to managing multi-channel marketing and growth)…the landing page, user experience (UX), and the plan for improving them has been critical.

This formed the basis for our thesis that a growth team, even if external, needed to have the ability to address the full funnel and we published our thoughts on this in the RBL Flywheel.

Employing elements of the RBL Flywheel has been mandatory for brands looking to compete in a faster moving more competitive market.

Think about it.

Your Brand: Badass Running Shoes

Badass Running Shoes is employing an ad hoc testing plan, focused on advertising and creativity.

Your competitor, Really Sweet Running Shoes employ a similar approach to bringing users into their ecosystem via intelligent media buying, leveraging algorithms, and ad creative.

However they ALSO have systematic approach to A/B testing, gathering qualitative feedback from users, reviewing data within analytics, heatmaps, and rank stacking tests based on their historical data, north star metric, UX best practices, and are deploying 4-10 A/B tests per month depending on their site traffic volume & level of complexity per test.

Who do you think is going to win?

Let’s share some hypothetical numbers to see how this could play out:

By deploying a more systematic, regular, data driven CRO program with 4x the tests and ensuring that the RIGHT tests are run at the right time, they can deliver an additional $1M in revenue over the same time period!

If you’re focusing on just paid marketing testing or just CRO testing, you’re missing half of the customer journey. You may have refined your targeting, creative, and product channel fit through thousands of experiments in paid media and creative, but what happens when they get to the website?

If you’re sending customers to a landing page that is not user friendly, does not echo the ad copy, image, and CTA of your ad creative, does not speak to the user’s concerns and motivations, you will not achieve the growth you desire.

Combining Chocolate (Paid Marketing) and Peanut Butter (Conversion Rate Optimization) is really good - so why aren't you doing it?

Let’s see how this played out for one of our clients that combined the power of CRO and PAID MARKETING…

Check out the Experiment Pipeline for the CRO program here:

The CRO team works from a 14 day sprint cycle in collaboration with Paid Marketing.

Here is a what a typical quarter can look like:

We chose to look at Feb 2022 to April 2022 due to the CRO launch in Feb and wanted to look at 3 months to give it more time to show CROs impact due to testing.

We compared against the previous period (11/04/21-1/31/22) pre-CRO launch.

Here are the results:

Before (11/4/21-1/31/22)

- Leads: 16,475

- Orders: 2,071

- Budget: $395,000

- Spend: $371,409

- CPL: $23 (Cost Per Lead)

- CPO: $179 (Cost Per Order)

After (2/1/22-4/30/22)

- Leads: 18,449

- Orders: 2,411

- Budget: $377,000

- Spend: $374,431

- CPL: $20 (Cost Per Lead)

- CPO: $155 (Cost Per Order)

Leads increased 12.0%

Orders increased 16.4%

Spend increased by only 0.8%

Cost Per Lead (CPL) decreased -13.0%

Cost Per Order (CPO) decreased -13.4%

All while staying below budget.

Overall the CRO program delivered an incremental $960,000 on just $26,250 in spend on the CRO & Experimentation program!

You read that right. That is 36:1 ROAS for a CRO Program!

We would modify the take slightly and say that it’s

Key Takeaway:

If you are not leveraging a regular well thought out experimentation pipeline to improve your entire funnel in addition to paid marketing landing pages then you are missing out on some significant gains for the growth of your business.


Special Thanks to Gary Marx, Mike McElhaney, and Shannon Bagford for their contribution on this post!

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