In DoubleClick Campaign Manager (DCM) a conversion is recorded by a tag, known as a Floodlight activity, when a user performs a predefined action after being served an ad. Commonly tagged actions include tracking when a user purchases an item from an online store, or visits a webpage to request more information via an online form. In general, conversions tracked by DoubleClick both begin and end online.
Conversions for some advertisers, however, may start online and finish offline. An example of this is a user that begins researching a product online, clicks on an ad, and then completes their purchase over the phone or in a retail store. In this scenario, DCM will have data about the online portion of the transaction, but not the offline portion, resulting in the conversion going unrecorded.
To address this, the DCM/DFA Reporting and Trafficking API's
Conversions service allows advertisers to provide information about the offline portion of these conversions directly to DCM.
Before you can start working with the
Conversions service, you'll need to complete the following steps:
- Create and authorize an API project as outlined in our Get Started guide.
- Ensure your DCM user profile has the necessary user role permissions. Contact your DCM account administrator to have these permissions enabled, if necessary.
Match conversions to activities
Offline conversions must be matched to a corresponding online activity in DCM. You'll refer to these activities by their
floodlightActivityId and corresponding
If you don't yet have an activity for tracking offline conversions, you can use the API's
FloodlightActivities service to create one. See the Common Trafficking Tasks guide for an example of how to do this. Creating dedicated activities for offline conversions is highly recommended.
Obtain click, device, and user IDs
Offline conversions must also be attributed to a particular click, device, or user ID. The most common ways to obtain these IDs are covered below.
Using Google Click ID
Google Click IDs must be passed in the
Using mobile device ID
Conversions may be directly attributed to mobile devices through the use of advertising device identifiers. The following identifiers are supported:
These identifiers must be passed in the
Using the %m match macro
The %m macro can be inserted into click-through or redirect URLs for a creative. The ad server will expand this macro into a user's encrypted user ID following a click event. The encrypted user ID can then be captured directly from the redirect URL, or from server logs.
Using Data Transfer
Data Transfer is a DCM feature that provides access to event-level ad server log data. This data is delivered via separate feeds, each comprising a single Data Transfer file. Within these files, each recorded event is associated with an encrypted user ID.
To make use of user IDs provided in Data Transfer files, you'll need a way to match an online ad server event with some event in your offline system. This is commonly done using custom Floodlight variables, which you can dynamically populate with values that uniquely identify a user action. A simplified workflow may look like this:
- A Floodlight activity tag fires, indicating the start of a transaction. The tag contains a custom variable value you've provided that uniquely identifies the transaction.
- The transaction continues and completes offline, maintaining the same identifier.
- Using the identifier recorded when the transaction completed, a matching entry is located in the Data Transfer activity log file that recorded the original Floodlight activity.