For Retail Business Services, the services company of Ahold Delhaize USA, gathering marketing data wasn’t a challenge — but organizing and sharing it was.
Retail Business Services was charged with finding a way to better visualize and access data. With pockets of data spread out across different systems, there was no way to provide local brands with a comprehensive look at business results or for them to see where improvements needed to be made.
The brands had been using another solution for organizing and presenting metrics, but it was not automated and involved a time-consuming process. To piece together the big picture, every month the team had to dedicate resources to manually rebuild reports. In addition, the solution fell short when it came to presenting metrics in a visually compelling way that enabled the local brands to make actionable decisions.
“There was no way to tell a story,” says Justin Baynton, manager of Digital Analytics and Search for Retail Business Services. “For people to understand data, they need a story.”
Going all in on automated dashboards
To understand the full story that the local brand data was telling, and to provide the automation and continuity brand marketers needed, Retail Business Services “went all in on Google Data Studio,” says Baynton. Partnering with Analytics Pros, a certified digital analytics agency, they built on-demand digital dashboards to provide the brands with comprehensive overviews of their marketing activities.
Now, all of a brand’s marketing data from across various channels, including website, social, search and PPC, is centrally located in an easy-to-read dashboard that automatically updates with the most recent data. The team was also able to pull in data from other sources. For example, they connected to Google Play through BigQuery to access app downloads, uninstalls, and other app metrics.
Faster workflows, clearer insights
These changes had a major impact, especially considering that Retail Business Services operates a lean and nimble analytics team. Now, the small group of analysts provides over 1,000 local brand associates with the self-service, automated data and “big-picture” storytelling they need to make decisions for their businesses — while also saving hundreds of hours every month.
“We’re really excited,” explains Baynton.
“We have never had this level of insight. [Automated dashboards] will empower the local brands to further expand their abilities to bring data into their everyday activities. And with better data at their fingertips, brand marketing teams now have the power to optimize campaigns and increase ROI. The dashboards have simplified the data. Everybody gets digestible, actionable insights.”
, Manager of Digital Analytics and Search, Retail Business Services
Other wins include a boost in social media channel performance, now that teams can more clearly see how content is performing. They also gained the ability to tweak PPC accounts in real time. “The brand marketing teams now have access to on demand reporting. They’re not waiting for a report to optimize. They can go in at any time,” says Baynton.
Only the beginning
So, what's next? After seeing the success of implementing Data Studio as a service to the local brands, the Retail Business Services’ team is now working to increase attribution capabilities for the brands. That way they can leverage their insights from digital all the way to in-store. Once that happens, the possibilities are endless.
“Data Studio will transform the way that digital campaigns are measured by the brands,” says Baynton. “One of the best practices that we learned is that investing in automation is key to success. What this unleashes, it’s huge.”