Farnell element14 is a high-service distributor of technology products and solutions for electronic system design, maintenance and repair in Europe, the Americas and Asia Pacific. As a digital enterprise, they bring together the latest products, services, and development software, all connected to an industry-leading online engineering community, element14. Through their community, purchasers and engineers can access peers and experts, a wide range of independent technical information and proprietary tools.
Farnell element14 stocks over 500,000 products from more than 3,000 industry leading suppliers. It also operates in 30 European markets with 27 different language campaigns. Managing their search campaign at this sort of scale presented many challenges. Thousands of new products are added to Farnell element14’s product portfolios every week.
Manually launching new campaigns at this rate was virtually impossible; Farnell element14 were relying on expensive broad match terms, or worse, simply missing out on potential revenue from customers searching for niche products due to lack of keyword coverage. Creating keyword lists and corresponding creatives for thousands of products was taking the Farnell element14 team up to four days per month; time that could be better spent optimising the accounts as Farnell element14 have ambitious growth and ROI targets.
The number of keywords Farnell element14 have across 500,000 products presented a significant challenge, as they were unable to manually manage search bids across this volume of keywords. They also struggled to gain granular visibility into performance at the keyword level, and were restricting their optimisation due to only having visibility into performance metrics at the campaign level. As Farnell element14 were scaling their campaigns across Europe they faced the added challenge of increasing their spend and keyword volumes in different languages and new territories whilst needing to maintain their Return On Ad Spend (ROAS).
Farnell element14 chose to work with Marin Software, the leading digital ad management platform, to handle the large-scale and complex nature of their campaign. Farnell element14 immediately took advantage of Marin Dimensions which allowed them to “tag” campaign elements for segmentation and analysis going beyond the constraints of campaign structure. It provided them the ability to easily categorise and compare data sets that matter to them, gaining insight into performance by product line, territory, or margin, right down to the keyword level.
Also, Farnell element14 applied Marin’s predictive bidding algorithm to their campaigns enabling them to automate keyword level bidding. Consequently, they were able to maximise financial performance based on their ROAS targets in an automated way, whilst still maintaining manual controls when needed.
Farnell element14 chose to use Marin’s Dynamic Create because it integrates seamlessly with the ad management tool and offers the flexibility needed to create campaigns that meet business requirements whilst maintaining industry best practice. Templates were defined to read existing product feeds and transform the product information into logical search campaigns with extensive keyword coverage and multiple ad variants that took consumers to individual product pages. Alerts were configured to inform the Farnell element14 teams which areas of the new campaigns were performing well and which were lagging behind.
Finally, as Farnell element14 expanded their campaigns across multiple territories, they utilised Marin Software’s global infrastructure. With offices around the world, Marin Software were able to provide a multi-language support structure and interface for Farnell element14’s users no matter what time zone they were in.
After utilising Marin’s automated bidding tool, Farnell element14 saw a number of performance improvements including:
As a result of utilising Marin Software’s digital ad management platform, Farnell element14 saved significant time spent on managing bids and reporting. This time was reallocated into the strategic optimisation of the campaign. Also, due to the greater insight they got into campaigns with Marin Software’s flexible reporting, the paid search team shared product-level performance to inform their ecommerce strategy and general keyword level reports with the SEO team to better inform their SEO strategy.
Marin’s Dynamic Create has eliminated the need for Farnell element14 to manually build campaigns for new products, a time saving of up to one day per week. The increased keyword coverage has meant that they no longer have to rely on expensive broad match terms to capture traffic; as soon as a new product is launched, a corresponding search campaign is live showing targeted ads to consumers and directing them to product specific landing pages.
In addition, Marin’s flexible approach to Dynamic Create means that Farnell element14 have instant access to actionable insights from Marin’s alerts which highlight best and worst-performing areas of new campaigns.