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Paypal Case Study

Delivering a convincing m-commerce campaign for the global payments giant

Reinforcing the benefits of a mobilised payment solution.


With the combined expertise of Purestone and CleverTouch we’ve learnt some incredibly valuable lessons, refined our approach and are now starting to see some great results.

Head of Lead Generation
PayPal UK


Founded in 1998, PayPal continue to be at the forefront of the digital payments revolution, giving people direct control over their money. Through innovations, they make life better by helping people and businesses receive and make payments in more than 100 currencies in 203 markets. Now an eBay Inc. company, PayPal is the faster, safer way to pay and get paid.

As smartphones became more common, there was a change in the way consumers were making purchases. This was a massive opportunity for online merchants – and therefore an opportunity for PayPal to reinforce its position as the leading online payment brand by talking to merchants about how they could optimise their sites for the ‘mobile boom’.

The Challenge

PayPal faced two main problems. First, there was a general perception amongst merchants that going mobile was complicated. Second, many of them felt that it was not important to them. PayPal therefore had a twin objective of instilling a sense of urgency and explaining the value of the mobile opportunity, whilst also reassuring them by explaining the simple steps that could be taken now, while they start thinking and planning for the future.

The commercial benefit to PayPal was to reinforce the benefits of its own mobilised payment solution. But of course, this proposition was not compelling to merchants who were reluctant to first optimize their own sites. PayPal had to first spread the m-commerce gospel to the non-believers.

Our Approach

As the microsite’s content centred on mobile optimisation it was critical for the site itself to be fully mobile optimised.

While responsive design is often the best approach to optimisation, striving to develop web content that renders well on numerous devices often results in pages that are not truly optimised for any of them.

In this case the user interface on mobile devices needed to look and feel like a native mobile application. With more screen space available, it made sense for the interface on desktops and tablets to be very different and include much more information on each page. To achieve this level of device optimisation, two versions of the microsite were developed.

Custom client-side coding enabled the user’s device to be detected so that the correct version could be loaded automatically for each visitor. From the visitor’s perspective the same site would appear to be dramatically different when viewed on different types of device.

PayPal worked with two agencies – Base One – a specialist B2B Agency and ourselves. Together, the two agencies worked together combining their specialist expertise to manage the project: Base One creating the content, microsite and communications material, while CleverTouch managed the planning and delivery of the communications and campaign measurement across Eloqua.


To be able to measure the success of the campaign, reporting was a key requirement.

The microsite was hosted in the Eloqua MA platform, which meant that visitor activity on the site would be logged, either anonymously for visitors arriving from web banners or telemarketing, or by email address for visitors arriving from the email campaign.

Alongside common reporting metrics such as email open rates and page visits, custom tracking was deployed so that campaign reports were able to provide a view of where microsite visitors arrived from and which devices they were using.

Survey data gathered before and after the campaign also served to highlight the campaign’s effectiveness.

35% Open Rates
20% Click Through Rate

The campaign had an incredibly positive impact. Email open rates were between 25% and 35%, driving 6% of the customer base to the microsite.

Of those merchants who received an email from PayPal about mobile optimisation, 20% clicked on the articles/links provided. Of the merchants surveyed before and after the campaign, the effectiveness of the campaign awareness that PayPal provided mobilised payment solutions had nearly doubled – 11% awareness in 2012 increased to 20% in 2013.

A quarter of merchants surveyed (24%) were encouraged to include mobile as part of their overall business plans after seeing the information on PayPal’s website and 57% of all merchants surveyed have a positive view of PayPal as an enabler of mobile payments.

The video on the microsite proved to be the most popular asset within the microsite proving a good way to display to content to the audience.

For merchants intending to offer mobile payments, PayPal remains the preferred solution.

The proportion of merchants preferring PayPal increased by 8 percentage points from 70% to 78%.

Activity going forward – how is the success being carried forward? PayPal saw US$14billion payments through mobile last year and are expecting US$20billion this year. The microsite continues to be used as collateral across the business and as part of other campaigns. PayPal continue to work with Base One and CleverTouch, creating and implementing a variety of innovative online campaigns to build on this success.

If you’d like to know more about how we can help you get the most out of your marketing automation, please talk to our team today!

Phil Ball
Business Director
+44 (0) 1962 677 007
Email me