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How Can You Predict the Next Purchase?

In the digital marketing sector, conversion tracking can feel like an episode of CSI, where the goal is to analyze an assortment of hard-to-decipher evidence with the aim of discovering how it got there. 

The main difference, of course, is that marketers aren’t trying to track down the culprit of a crime; rather, they have to figure out the sequence of steps that led their customers to make a purchase. 

The evidence trail consists not of DNA and the like but ad impressions, video views, website visits, and other digital clues spread around the internet. 

If properly assessed, these clues provide key insights into the effectiveness of a particular ad or campaign.

ROI meme
Follow the clicks graphic

But “digital detective” is only one of the roles that the modern marketer needs to be able to perform. 

They can’t just content themselves with knowing what has already happened. 

They also need to be able to peer into the future—to anticipate, as best they can, the probable next steps of a customer as their relationship with your brand gradually develops. 

That will enable the marketer to effectively modify their campaigns to capture additional conversions down the road. 

As the saying goes, the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. 

Having accurate data about customers’ purchase history and other interactions with your brand will enable you to align your retargeting efforts to increase the chances of landing future sales. 

The big question is, however, where do you get this kind of accurate data? That’s never been a simple task—but with the AdBeacon ad tracking software on your side, it’s now much easier. 

Customer journey widescreen

AdBeacon’s suite of marketing attribution tools includes customer journey and product journey breakdowns, each of which tracks the pathway to a particular type of conversion. Let’s take a look at how these features can enable marketers to anticipate future customer actions and adjust ad campaigns accordingly.

The Customer Journey with AdBeacon

AdBeacon’s Customer Journey mapping feature allows marketers to view every touchpoint made by a particular buyer on the way to the eventual conversion. 

Each touchpoint is recorded along with all relevant data, such as the name of the ad (as well as the associated ad set and campaign names) and the specific time the ad was viewed. 

Marketers can also view non-ad touchpoints (e.g., website visits).  

All this data is linked to the personally identifiable information of the consumer as recorded at the time of the conversion: 

  • The name of the customer
  • The order ID
  • The date/time of the purchase
  • The total amount of money spent by the customer
  • The product(s) purchased 

The collected data is easily viewable on a single screen, in either Table or Chart mode.

This information is valuable for determining which ads and channels are responsible for pulling customers through the conversion funnel and generating sales. 

That’s good—but you need to go further. 

In order to aid marketers in anticipating future conversions, this feature must be paired with another powerful option provided by AdBeacon: the Product Journey

Adbeacon customer journey

Tracking The Product Journey

AdBeacon’s capabilities extend beyond just tracking customers—it can track the performance of individual products as well. 

More specifically, the software allows you to see aggregated data indicating which products are most frequently purchased by customers who have already bought a certain item from you. 

Product journey

Here’s how it works. 

On AdBeacon, you can check a specific product sold on your ecommerce site to view the subsequent products that buyers went on to purchase from you. 

This information is presented in the form of a Sankey diagram (a type of flow map) that displays the percentage of repeat buyers who eventually purchased certain items. 


Customer Cohort Analysis

For instance, if you’re interested in tracking the product journey of Item A, the diagram might show that 15% of repeat buyers who bought that item went on to buy Item B, while another 10% later shelled out for Item C, and 4% opted for Item D, while 3% chose to buy Item A again. 

The diagram also shows the next round of purchases, so you have insight into what those 10% who bought Item C went on to buy next. 

Conversion path funnel

So how can marketers take advantage of this information?

For one, they can design upsell offers that pair the customer’s chosen purchase with an item that is often bought in conjunction with it.

Or they can create landing pages that include multiple products that are frequently purchased by the same buyer. 

As with all attempts to predict future developments, this is necessarily an imprecise science.

However, studying past trends can be a tremendous aid in your efforts to devise accurate buyer personas and design targeted campaigns. 

AdBeacon & First-Party Data

None of these features would work so effectively without first-person datathis is the “secret sauce” that powers AdBeacon. 

By using your own data gleaned from customer interactions with your brand, you can accurately track customer behavior and, even more importantly, take an educated guess as to their next steps. 

That’s the kind of insight you need to maintain brand loyalty in the long run.


Want to try AdBeacon? Schedule a demo today!