How to measure ROI of influencer marketing in e-commerce?

Measuring and demonstrating the true influence have been the biggest areas of criticism of influencer marketing. One of the pioneers in measuring and doing influencer marketing are international e-commerce companies.

The importance of measuring becomes increasingly important when investing in influencer marketing becomes a part of a company’s marketing communications efforts in a larger scale. It’s easy to build a connection from influencer marketing into e-commerce analytics. Here are some ways to measure the ROI of influencer marketing in e-commerce.

1. Tracking links

When an influencer makes a YouTube video or Instagram Stories series, the advertiser can provide the influencer with a tracking code that is linked to e-commerce analytics. It allows the advertiser to track clicks and conversions derived from the influencer’s content to the e-commerce. It’s worthwhile to continue and deepen the collaboration with influencers who produce many clicks and converts as they have the ability to affect consumers purchase decisions.

2. Coupon codes

One popular way is to use the various e-commerce discount codes that an influencer offers to his or her followers along with the advertiser. For example, with promotional code INFLUENCER20, followers receive a 20% discount from the shopping carts amount. Coupon code is a good option for podcasts or Instagram posts where a link cannot be embedded. However, it is important to remember the importance of the content entity of the influencer’s channel, as a single and separate discount code is unlikely to produce the best results.

3. Tracking pixel

Nonetheless, the viewer does not always switch to online shopping right away, and the purchase may take place later. So it’s good for an advertiser to note that a simple click or conversion from a promotional code does not tell the whole truth about the influence on consumer buying behavior. According to a study* conducted in Sweden, only 7% said they clicked as they wanted to buy the product while 52% said they wanted more information about the product.

One effective way of tracking is to integrate the influencer’s YouTube video with Google Ads and Analytics into the customer’s ecommerce analytics. This way purchase paths from content to customer data points can be built, for example.

It’s also worth for an online store to note that with a small additional investment in distribution in social media, you can significantly improve the ROI for influencer marketing. For example, on YouTube, you can double your clicks to an e-commerce site with a fraction of your media investment, when you re-market Google Shopping Ads or ad videos made by an influencer.

To help you plan your influencer marketing, also read How to take influencer marketing to the next level.

*Influencer marketing trends and impact of commercial collaborations on consumer behavior, July 2019, Troot Sweden & OMD Annalect