Ask the Expert



Q:  "We’re modifying our lead source attribution because currently, the 1st interaction will take the credit for a conversion but our marketing team disagrees. Leads tend to come in as referrals, but what about all of those interactions in between? Who gets the credit: the first or last interaction?"

A: As one of the oldest debates in the marketing playbook, lead source conversion attribution really depends on your company’s business model and goals. If you’re attributing based on the 1st interaction, it’s because the campaigns you push are designed to create an initial brand awareness, whereas an ecommerce business would prefer to focus on the final words of: “submit payment” and attribute the lead conversion to the final interaction.

However, as a business that nurtures leads, your marketing team wants to know how impactful their outbound campaigns are to the bottom line. Their goal is to understand all activity in between and give credit to each interaction, including the final touch point. Fortunately, Google Analytics has options available that will help solidify your lead source attribution and allow for customization as business goals change.

Let’s take a look at the 2 options available in Google Analytics:

  1. Standard Google Analytics Attribution

    • Standard reporting comes in all Google Analytics instances
    • Last & final click is attributed
    • Any referral within 30 minutes will keep the last campaign information
    • A direct visit will not over-write any campaign information,br /> *Note – By default: The last non-direct click will receive 100% of the value for the conversion

model comparison

  1. Multi-Channel Attribution:

    • Additional feature available in Google Analytics
    • Evaluate the effectiveness of each channel you market in
    • Experiment & test with a customized attribution modeling
    • View assisted conversions, last click or direct conversions, & values of each
      * Note – You can attribute any value to any type of interaction


Multi-channel attribution models available in Google Analytics:

  • Last Interaction
  • Last Non-Direct Click
  • Last AdWords Click
  • First Interaction
  • Linear Attribution
  • Time Decay (earlier interactions will receive less credit)
  • Position Based
  • Customized

If you’re unsure of which model is right for you, use the model comparison tool in Google Analytics & test your efforts for a few weeks.

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