Google launches planning tool to ‘unpick’ online and offline knot

Google has launched what it claims is the “most comprehensive free tool” yet for advertisers looking to understand the link between online and offline shopper habits.

Google has launched a tool that promises to offer deeper insight into shopper behaviour.
Google has launched a tool that promises to offer deeper insight into shopper behaviour.

The fourth edition of the search giant’s Consumer Barometer report delvers deeper into understanding how shoppers behave across multiple devices.

Spanning 46 countries, the tool highlights trends such as the impact of online video on shopping habits and also claims to shed new light on existing areas including how people research purchases online

Additional updates include more detail on consumer habits on different devices, a greater breadth of shopping behavior for each product category surveyed and a new layout designed for planners.

Key learnings from the report include the UK having the highest number of grocery shoppers compared to the rest of Europe. Some 16% of UK consumers are most likely to buy their food and drink online compared to just 3% in Europe. Additionally, 38% of shoppers under 24 research purchases online in the UK on their smartphones compared to an average of 21% across all age groups.

The findings currently span vertical sectors ranging from clothing and footwear to cosmetics and groceries. New industries are added on an ongoing basis as the barometer grows.

Peter Cory, agency sales director at Google, says: “People now use digital media for a huge array of purposes but it isn’t always easy to tell what channels and activities are the most effective, particularly if you’re dealing with multiple markets and products.”

The content of the Barometer is based on two research studies conducted during 2014 over 50 different countries, involving 150,000 respondents.

Google’s push to bring greater clarity to customer journey comes as the media owner struggles to demonstrate the value of mobile ads on that path to purchase. Despite an increase in clicks, the average cost per click declined for the 12th consecutive quarter for Google. Given the commitment the company has made to growing its mobile offering, the performance suggests its ads are not effective enough to warrant higher prices.

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