Having established that there’s a demand, Cabela’s also uses the BrightEdge tech to validate its KPIs.
“Did we own search? Did people share? Did we reach the right consumer with our content? How many pages per visit were there? Did it ultimately lead to sales? These are the kinds of questions we’re looking to answer across owned, earned and paid,” Farley said.
Non-branded organic search pointing to Cabela’s properties is up 34% year over year, Farley said. Sales typically trickle in 30 to 90 days after a user engages with the brand’s content, returning between two and six times before deciding to make a purchase.
In addition to its O&O, the brand works with a number of display partners, including Carbon Media Group and OutdoorHub, both of which focus on outdoor enthusiasts, to syndicate its content.
Although Cabela’s does some retargeting based off of which of articles people are reading across the web, it keeps that to a minimum.
“We’re talking to the top of the funnel,” Farley said. “So it’s less about ‘Here’s 50% off a tent today!’ and more something like, ‘There are many types of tent out there. We’ll explain what they are and when you might need different ones.’”
Cabela’s also taps BrightEdge to help predict and capitalize on trends right as they start bubbling up. It’s not always intuitive.
Take elk hunting, for example. Elk hunting season doesn’t start until November, but Farley, an avid elk hunter himself, is already doing his research even though it’s only June.
“We’re looking at transaction data, our own customer data, interest data, what worked best last year, what’s trending – a lot of things,” Farley said. “And with all of that in mind, we’re able to gear up with content and merchandising at the right time, even if it’s six to eight months in advance.”