Burton Snowboards is a global retailer of winter sports and snowboarding gear. They chose to work with Search Laboratory in 2015 after struggling to get results for their English, German, and other international market PPC campaigns.

They were keen to evolve their PPC campaigns, increase paid revenue, and expand into new international markets.


increase in PPC revenue from 2016 to 2022


uplift in PPC revenue in France since 2016


revenue growth for the past three years


new markets in 2022

Our approach


Positioning ourselves for growth


After an initial period of consolidation, we ensured we had the correct account structure in place, providing us with a solid platform from which to grow. We rolled out comprehensive campaign coverage across the initial markets, segmenting by brand, non-brand, product categories, and gender and focusing on search and shopping campaigns.

This was the initial blueprint we used, and it could be rolled out across future markets. A clear ROAS target was established, and Google auto-bidding strategies (tCPA and tROAS) were leveraged to help scale activity at or above target efficiency.

We stayed close to new product developments and incorporated these where appropriate to sustain growth within the EU. For example, we successfully leveraged local campaigns in recent years to provide Burton with valuable support for their physical stores across Europe.

More recently, we increased investment in upper-funnel activity, utilizing discovery, display prospecting, and remarketing activity to drive brand awareness and help sustain longer-term market share and growth.


International expansion and localization


We worked with our native-speaking digital marketers to build bespoke strategies for the non-English speaking markets. This localized approach strengthened our position in these regions alongside resellers by building credibility and trust to resonate with the target market.

Initially, we focused on brand head terms such as “Burton jackets” to compete against resellers for traffic and gain traction before expanding the keyword coverage. We used RLSA to re-engage with non-convertors and be more aggressive on broad terms.

By tapping into our internal resource of native-speaking digital marketers, we boosted interaction rates and conversion efficiency, enabling us to scale further. Once we had proven success in a region, we continued to assess the opportunity for expansion and looked to increase market share to aid EU growth.

Assessment and expansion for international markets


Once we noticed the levels of success in the core EU markets (Germany, Austria, France, Switzerland), we began to explore other markets with similar levels of potential. Visualizing the opportunities and the level of risk with each market enabled our client to make informed and profitable decisions on where to expand their business.

Combining Google Market Explorer data and utilizing additional inputs from Google Ads (impressions, impression share, click-through rate averages, cost per click, conversion rates, and average order value), we were able to forecast the size of global opportunities within the snowboarding industry and estimated investment costs, revenue, ROAS and CPA for multiple EMEA markets.

Our international team also conducted market research to provide additional insights into local and global competitors’ activity in the new markets. By unearthing price points, consumer expectations around delivery time, and payment methods, we began to gain insight into the market’s potential and possible barriers we should be aware of.

We used Market Explorer to understand English vs. non-English language query share for the snowboard category in each identified market to spot opportunities for running English campaigns. The market expansion off the back of this has been as follows:

  • Four new markets entered in 2019
  • Six new markets entered in 2021
  • Four markets identified for 2022

Key achievements


Burton Snowboards has seen consistent results each year, successfully entering new markets, increasing revenue, and growing market share across Europe. We have continued to explore new opportunities, evolving our approach over the years to maintain momentum and sustain growth and progress throughout our seven-year partnership.

Key results include:

  • Expansion from 50 campaigns across five countries to 375 across 17 countries
  • 590% increase in revenue from 2016 to 2022
  • Exceeded ROI targets every year while growing revenue
  • Revenue growth of 40% or more for the past three years

Employing various tactics saw a robust year-on-year increase in paid performance and revenue across all three markets. Our work with Burton Snowboards was selected as a finalist in the international growth category at the 2022 Google Premier Partner Awards.


Thanks to these strong results, Search Laboratory has been asked to launch paid campaigns in four new markets, three of which are non-English speaking.

Expanding for the future


Past success has allowed us to operate on a threshold spending model with an unrestricted budget, provided we can deliver at (or above) target ROAS. This puts us in a great position to further scale and explore additional international markets.

Since adopting this model, we have doubled investment year-on-year and plan to take market coverage to more than 20 countries.

Do you want to achieve international success like Burton?Learn how in our webinar with Google