Rakuten Marketing strong in first quarter

Rakuten Marketing experienced strong results for the first quarter of 2014 across all of its digital marketing channels.

The company especially highlighted the double-digit growth that advertisers realized through its affiliate, mobile and search marketing technology and services. Additionally, the company signed several new advertisers throughout the quarter that were either new to Rakuten Marketing, or have expanded their existing investments with the company to include additional marketing channels.

The global affiliate marketing channel reported the following year-over-year same-store sales growth: 23% increase in the U.S., 31% growth in the U.K., 21% growth in Canada, 11% growth in Japan and the recently launched Australian performance marketing network realized a 252% increase.

Mobile orders continue to rise in the affiliate channel with the following year-over-year results: 99% growth in the U.S., 113% growth in the U.K., 251% growth in Canada, 21% growth in Japan, and 35% increase in Australia.

Tablet commerce continues to drive opportunities for the affiliate channel. Specifically, year-over-year growth in the U.S. was 36%, in the U.K. it was 30%, in Canada it was 35%, in Japan it was 59% and in Australia it was 27 %.

The company’s display and retargeting group realized 100% growth in its client base year-over-year. They also expanded internationally through offices in Brazil, Japan, the U.K. and Australia. Part of this growth comes from referrals from the company’s other digital marketing channels. This growth also enabled the display and retargeting group to increase staff by 65% over the past year.

Additionally, the display and retargeting group reports a 279% year-over-year increase in the number of smartphone purchases and 246% year-over-year increase in the number of purchases made on tablets.

The company’s search marketing clients saw strong year-over-year same-store results. Sales increased 18%, conversion rates increased 13 %, the return on ad spend (ROAS) increased 10% and the cost-per-click decreased by 4%.
“Like most digital marketers, we’re challenged with having to determine which channels will be most effective for each campaign and how to appropriately recognize the role each channel played in the sale,” said Mark Blenkinsop, digital marketing manager, Dune. “With Rakuten Marketing’s pay-for-performance model and seasoned client services team, we know our investments in affiliate and display will meet or exceed campaign goals.”

New clients that have joined Rakuten Marketing this quarter include affiliate advertisers Booking.com, Ticket Club, Forbes, Flight Club and Dune in the U.S. and Vistaprint and L’Occitane, an existing display client, in Australia.

Additionally, Gourmet Gift Baskets, Cambridge Satchel Company US and UK, TopShop and My-Wardrobe in the U.K., as well as MatchesFashion.com in the U.S., U.K., and Australia have signed on with Rakuten MediaForge for display and retargeting campaigns.

“When you look at the latest global e-commerce forecasts, which anticipate this sector will reach $1.5 trillion this year, you realize that while there’s opportunity, there’s also increased competition and confusion about the value each marketing channel delivers,” said Yaz Iida, CEO, Rakuten Marketing. “By working alongside our customers and providing insight into the performance of each marketing channel, we’ve been able to help drive strong results as evidenced by today’s announcement.”



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