Eyeblaster released a study yesterday showing that “display ads stimulate search by increasing the speed at which people searching enter the purchase funnel,” reports MediaPost. The study examined over 1300 search and display campaigns over a 15 month period.
They found that early one in five people who convert after using search had seen at least one display ad before searching. Eyeblaster concluded that display advertising increases the reach of campaigns, pushing more consumers to search. Those consumers then move through the purchasing funnel faster.
And this wasn’t just in a single industry: Eyeblaster looked at more than 200 advertisers in over 20 verticals. 72% of conversions resulted from display advertising, while 23% of the conversions were a direct result of the search channel and 5% were the result of display ads that were followed by a search.
Eyeblaster Principal Analyst Ariel Geifman says that display can thus be used to enhance search and reach a greater audience. “Since search is down the funnel, you need more prospects in the intent-to-purchase phase,” he says. He also notes that display scales more easily than search.
Display may help because search campaigns only show ads to people who’ve shown interest in that subject. Type “digital camera” into a search engine and you’ll get digital camera ads. But if you’re browsing the Internet, the random sites you come across won’t know you’re in the market for a digital camera. Display advertising is usually less targeted by intent, but reaches a greater audience across all target demographics.
On the other hand, as MediaPost says:
Search works on the lower parts of the funnel by targeting prospective customers in the consideration stage or in the intent-to-purchase stage and pushes them to complete their purchase. Display works on all stages of the funnel, bringing prospective customers into the funnel by generating awareness for the products or the services.
What do you think? Does display+search help people buy faster?