Webtrends Apps has released a new tool for Facebook advertisers that allows them to sync an ad campaign, a Facebook app, and an in-app action to create a conversion funnel. However, advertisers can only track the correlation between ads and in-app actions, not causality. At this point, it’s more relevant to smaller advertisers running fewer ads who want a general idea of the value ads are driving, rather than advertisers looking to optimize larger campaigns.
Webtrends acquired self-service and full-service web, mobile and social app developer Transpond in August, and rebranded it Webtrends Apps. Its last notable release was the addition of a drag-and-drop app creation interface and an integration with the Facebook Ads API in December.
To use the conversion funnel tool, Webtrends Apps users who are advertising for their apps log in through Facebook Connect and select the single ad campaign they want to track. They then select the app the ad links to and choose an action to track, such as a Facebook Share or the user switching tabs in the app. The funnel view then appears in the Webtrends Apps dashboard. The tool can be linked to the Facebook Ads API.
However, the system doesn’t employ tracking URLs or ad IDs. The only way to assess causality is for developers to create unique instances of their apps for each ad campaign, splintering an app’s userbase and potentially cluttering the navigation menu of Pages running the app in a tab. Otherwise, advertisers can create funnels for each ad they’re running, and watch to see if clicks to the ad correlate to in-app actions.
The new product will have to compete with sophisticated app conversion tracking-focused advertising services including Nanigans and AdParlor. These services install tracking pixels in apps and employ unique referral URLs to track conversions without requiring clients to create separate instances of their apps.
While light-weight with no coding necessary, the Webtrends campaign funnels too strictly limit advertisers to be an effective way of tracking any sizable or multi-channel ad campaign.