Utilizing ROAS to Measure Advertising Results

Tracking how your marketing campaigns directly affect your company’s earnings or earnings might help you make better marketing decisions, reduce advertising waste, and enhance your company.

As you could choose among several key performance indicators to determine which marketing investments help your organization the maximum, return on advertising spend (ROAS) could be among the best ways to compare advertising tactics as soon as your objective is direct profit or revenue generation.

What’s ROAS?

ROAS attempts to identify the proportion of dollars spent in a given advertising tactic to the earnings or profit that it generated.

Frequently ROAS is presented as a percentage, a percentage, or a dollar value.

Imagine an internet retailer spends $1,000 on a pay-per-click marketing effort using a favorite search engine. If the campaign generates $10,000 in profit, there’s a 10:1 ratio between the amount invested and the amount returned.

ROAS = 10:1


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This exact same ROAS may also be calculated as a percent. To do so, we would split the gain by the advertising invest and multiply by 100.

(10,000 / 1,000 = 10) x 100 = 1,000percent

While both ROAS as a ratio and ROAS as a percentage are popular ways to present this information, they could be tricky to consider when you begin to compare marketing tactics. So some entrepreneurs say the ratio in terms of dollars and pennies in an attempt to produce ROAS more tangible.

To find a dollar amount, simply state the gain part of this ROAS ratio as such, to reveal the amount of profit generated by one dollar.

10:1 = 10

However you decide to express ROAS, it can help you decide which marketing campaigns or strategies are returning the most comparative profit or earnings.

Quantify Profit or Revenue?

Speaking of earnings or revenue, ROAS may be used to measure either relative to a specific advertising tactic. In actuality, when you look in fiscal blogs or publications, ROAS is frequently associated with revenue.

This is reasonable for companies focused on earnings growth — perhaps the ones that want to grab market share or impress prospective investors. Privately-held, little and midsize companies, however, may be more interested in maximizing profit.

Consider these two example advertising strategies.

Advertisement spend Revenue Margin Gain
$1,000 $10,000 15 percent $500
$1,000 $5,000 30 percent $500

Imagine the initial tactic is an internet coupon. It gives shoppers a 15-percent discount anything they purchase from a specific online shop. To foster the coupon offer, the shop spends $1,000 on search engine PPC advertising. Those advertisements help to generate about $10,000 in earnings at roughly 15-percent margin, for a gain of $500 ($1,500 minus the $1,000 PPC spend).

For the next row in the table, imagine the shop generated a promoted pin campaign on Pinterest. The product promoted was provided at full price so the margin is roughly 30 percent. The encouraged pins cost $1,000. The strategy generated $5,000 in earnings at 30 percent profit margin, leading to $500 in profit after the cost of the advertisements.

If your company were worried about earnings growth, the PPC ad on the search engine is more successful. It creates a $10 ROAS versus a $5 ROAS for the encouraged pin.

Advertisement spend Revenue ROAS
$1,000 $10,000 $10
$1,000 $5,000 $5

If your business is focused on gain, you’d calculate ROAS based on your own gain after advertising spend. In cases like this, both the search engine PPC ad and the encouraged pin create a 50 cent ROAS.

Advertisement spend Gain ROAS
$1,000 $500 $0.50
$1,000 $500 $0.50

Bear in mind, this was completely hypothetical. The operation of a PPC ad on search engines and a promoted pin on Pinterest is very likely to be quite distinct. The purpose here is to determine if your company is focused on earnings or profit.

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A Warning about ROAS

ROAS should help you identify which marketing tactics do the most to promote your business goals within a particular context. However, you will need to be cautious with ROAS for a few reasons.

First, not every advertisement and not every marketing campaign is supposed to produce a sale directly or immediately. Consider content promotion, which should attract, engage, and retain customers over a comparatively long time period. A PPC ad on Google may run or a week for a month, but a post on your site may be impacting customers for five decades. It wouldn’t be appropriate to attempt and quantify that blog post within the period of a week and compare it to the PPC ad.

Next, ROAS doesn’t measure total revenue or total gain. We ought to consider the available quantity of earnings or profit a strategy produces relative to the ROAS. Here are a few examples taken from a multichannel retail at the northwest U.S.

Advertisement spend Gain ROAS
$3,500 $80,672 $23.05
$99 $24,237 $244.82

Both these campaigns promoted the identical offer in May 2016 but appeared in various mediums. The next offer significantly out produced the initial offer in ROAS. Nevertheless, the second feature reflects the entire available inventory. The advertiser couldn’t buy even one more dollar of advertisement space in this medium. The $24,237 signifies everything available there. So it wouldn’t make much sense to get rid of the $3,500 strategy, which generates $80,672 in gain, simply because some different strategy has a greater ROAS.