Chessbazaar, a small business based in Mohali, Punjab, sells wooden chess pieces, boards, and accessories prized by players and collectors worldwide. Their chess sets are handcrafted by families of artisans from nearby Amritsar, using tools and techniques that date back centuries. “It’s quite a history that we are selling, and we are very proud of it,” says Vikramjit Singh, Founder and Managing Director of Artsmart, Chessbazaar’s parent company.
Founded in 2007, Chessbazaar first sold their hand-crafted products through third-party marketplaces. Unhappy with the fees and lack of brand control, they launched their own e-commerce website in 2012 and turned to Google digital marketing products to spread the word. Chessbazaar initially handled their Google Ads and Google Shopping campaigns in-house. But by late 2016, facing increasingly stiff competition from big online retailers, they needed help to showcase their extensive product catalog, especially to luxury chess product buyers in the U.S. and UK.
Chessbazaar initially encountered challenges in identifying, engaging, and then re-engaging potential customers. They also realized that, to reach and then remarket to these unique prospects, they needed distinctive messaging that reflected details such as different price points for different audience segments. For this reason, they found that targeted Shopping campaigns were important especially during the November–December holiday season.
“Shopping campaigns are working brilliantly for us,” Singh notes. Their return on investment (ROI) during the first half of 2018 was 2.53, an increase of 172 percent, compared with the same period a year earlier.
Chessbazaar worked with OnlineSales.ai to drive brand awareness and boost impressions and site traffic by identifying the most relevant Google Ads search keywords for their products. The team also re-engaged prospects who had already shown interest in their offerings via search, Shopping, display, and dynamic remarketing campaigns. Shopping campaigns ensured that prospective customers saw examples of Chessbazaar products before they visited the website, which increased the conversion rate. Data from
Google Analytics also helped to reach specific audiences and locations in the U.S. and UK, and identify the best times to schedule the ads.
These efforts brought dramatic results for Chessbazaar. Conversions rose by more than 35 percent thanks to display and dynamic remarketing (DRM) campaigns, which helped re-engagement, producing more conversions than standard search campaigns. Clickthrough rates (CTR) soared nearly 43 percent with the use of generic non-brand keywords, sitelinks, callout extensions, expanded text ads (ETA), and structured snippets. Revenues rose 185 percent as cost-per-acquisition (CPA) fell 16 percent. “Remarketing has given us substantial ROI of 2X, and the brand campaigns have also given us a very good conversion rate,” Singh says.
Successfully collaborating with their Google Partner was pivotal for Chessbazaar, as was reaching return customers. “Fifty percent of our customers are repeat customers, and remarketing actually was the turning point for us,” Singh notes. Chessbazaar is now looking at digital campaigns in Germany and other European countries, and perhaps Australia and South America as well.