Imagine that you are listening to your favorite podcast and you hear an advertisement for a fancy new product that you have to buy. In the ad, the announcer provides a coupon code that gives listeners a discount on their first order.
Later that night, you fire up your computer to order the product and you remember to enter the coupon code. It was so nice of them to give you a discount, right?
Hold up.... 😲 While the coupon code may have appeared to be a nice gesture, it actually allowed the company to attribute, or associate, your purchase back to the podcast ad. Advertisers collect this valuable data to help them in measuring the success of their ad campaigns and to also allow the advertiser to understand where in the buyers journey the sale can be attributed (in days).
But coupon codes are imprecise, tedious, and prone to error; advertisers have to make unique ones for each podcast and customers may forget to enter the code during checkout. If only there was a way to quietly and automatically monitor sales attribution behind-the-scenes.
Enter Amazon pay-per-click (PPC) sales attribution! 🎉
When a shopper clicks on one of your Sponsored Product Ads, Amazon silently waits for a purchase to occur. When the customer completes their purchase, Amazon links the sale back to the ad click, even if the click occurred on a different day from the sale. Pretty cool, right? 😎
The most common question that we get asked surrounding attribution goes something like this:
“Why are Amazon’s reported sales different than the numbers that I am seeing in the Advertising Center?”
The length of time between the initial click and the attributed sale is called an attribution window. Within Seller Central, Amazon’s sales attribution window is 7 days.
What makes the Advertising Center so powerful is that it is able to comb through Amazon’s data to report an attribution window of 30 days. This allows our customers to have a more accurate view into the health of their campaigns.
We've created a simple chart below to illustrate the attribution windows for 3P Amazon advertisers:
Aside from the above windows, another very common question that we receive about attribution is:
“I ended my campaign, but I’m still seeing my sales increase. Are you juicing my numbers??”
At Seller Labs, we are fans of a nice, freshly squeezed juice, but we’re not inflating your reporting! 🍊
With a 30-day attribution window, your customers have plenty of time to checkout after clicking an ad. Often, this means that a period’s sales will appear to increase over time as customers eventually make their purchase after their initial click.
Lastly, an ad click that leads to a sale of another one of your products will still be counted as an attributed sale. This is what Amazon refers to as brand halo conversion. Amazon’s rationale for this type of sales attribution is that the initial ad click generated interest in your brand, even if the customer did not purchase the product featured within the ad.
So what are the two biggest takeaways from all of this?
Sales are attributed to the date of the click, not the date of the sale.
Reported sales for a period will often change over time due to the Advertising Center 30-day attribution window.
We understand that Amazon Sponsored Advertising can be downright confusing at times, but that’s why we're here!