Mercent Adds Retail Metrics to Search

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Mercent is including search engine marketing tools with its merchandising software to help retail clients track the per-product profitability and inventory impact of keyword buys.

The service, Mercent Retail Analytics, applies retail metrics to search marketing campaigns across Google AdWords, Yahoo Search Submit and Microsoft adCenter. It then rationalizes such sales, conversion and ad spend data with backend merchandising information like per-product cost of goods sold, gross profit, average inventory value and impact on inventory turns.

"It means that as I look to make decisions about where to allocate my ad budget across cost-per-click advertising platforms, gross margin and inventory turns are now practical inputs to that decision process," said Eric Best, CEO of Mercent, Seattle.

The set-up process -- free to current Mercent clients like Woolrich, Cutter & Buck and Celebrate Express -- is simple.

The merchant first is integrated with the Mercent Retail on-demand merchandising platform. Mercent then has access to cost of goods sold and inventory data to rationalize ad spend. This way, Mercent Retail dashboard users can see which products are converted by specific keywords and how the CPC bids for those keywords affect retail merchandising metrics.

"Many of our customers are in the fashion, apparel and jewelry accessory categories, and these merchants see a wide range of profitability across the products," Mr. Best said. "The value of the solution becomes even greater when you're dealing with large catalogs and large keyword libraries."

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