In today’s fast-paced digital age, it is easy to track users from numerous marketing channels and devices, even though the apps they use are offline most of the time. But the question is do businesses really know how to harness these critical swaths of data to their advantage?
And are they aware of the most appropriate approach to follow in order to make the most of this digital analytics data? The answer to these pressing questions is to have a strong digital analytics methodology in place that can cater to your special business requirements and industry.
Having a proper web analytics approach will make sure that your analysis and measurements are intimately aligned with your business goals. Such a methodology will help generate data that will allow performing effective actions that fetch desired business outcomes for you.
But before you go ahead and design a web analytics strategy you must be clear about some basic concepts. The concepts like tactical tagging strategy or creating dashboards that provide extremely actionable information about your business.
Here are four important points to consider while designing a web analytics strategy for your business.
A) What’s the primary objective of my website? And how do I make money out of it?
You must be clear about who your target audiences are and what tasks you want them to complete on your site. Your analytics solution must then be defined to keep track of these two objectives.
Here are some examples:
Suppose you want people to sign up for your premium membership:
Then the first step would be to design a subscription page for premium membership as a goal. The next step would be to create a conversion funnel to this subscription page to know why people are signing up for a premium membership and from where they are arriving on this page.
Now let’s imagine that you may want to boost the visibility of certain best-performing ads or items on your website to increase your revenue:
Then track those ads and products closely by tagging the actions associated with them, like the impressions and click those ads and products receive. Creating a heap map of the page that contains these products or ads is also highly recommended.
The next thing you must do is to find the “click per ad” and “click per impression” ratio to uncover that sweet spot on your web page to promote your ads and products. Enhance the user navigation on your website by taking out those poor-performing ads!
An efficient web analytics agency/company must have the insight and ability to enhance or change a portion of a web page or website or select the most appropriate marketing campaign for helping their client to increase their revenue or accomplish their goals.
B) Are you aware of your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)?
Everything that you have tagged and tracking should either help you accomplish a KPI or get closer to it. But before we go any further with KPIs, let’s look at what KPIs basically do.
A KPI is a gaugeable value that exhibits the efficiency of an organization in accomplishing critical business goals. Organizations make use of KPIs at various levels of their business model to analyze if they are successful in accomplishing their objectives. Enterprises make use of a wide variety of KPIs to measure their success. Top-level KPIs are used by businesses to learn their general performance. And micro-level KPIs are used to keep track of the operations of various departments such as sales, advertising, marketing, and customer service, and so on.
Different business scenarios need different KPIs. You cannot have one common KPI for a wide range of business situations. A KPI should be designed by determining the business strategy that you have in place for accomplishing a specific goal. And your web analytics methodology should be aligned to this KPI.
Here’s a case study on tagging to learn its implications on KPIs.
Let’s take a scenario where I have an e-commerce website that sells electronic items. And I’m tracking the number of clicks for SLR cameras on my site – which is the KPI that I’ll be focusing on. So in order to get the maximum number of clicks on my desired product listings, I need to find out how many listings of SLR cameras should I display, and where to place them on the site. For that, I must tag those SLR product pages first and track them appropriately. Once I have that critical analytics data at my disposal, I can optimize the product pages, their performance, and the conversion funnel for those pages.
After scrutinizing the analytics data, I find that product pages with more than four images of the SLR camera are converting well than the listings with lesser images. Hence we discover how a KPI is performing with the help of digital analytics activities like tagging and tracking.
C) Can the analytics data help me take business decisions?
You can track innumerable web metrics associated with your site. You can also harness various segments of that generated analytics data to make critical business decisions. The possibilities of creating reports based on these analytics data are almost endless. That also means that the amount of analytics data can easily leave you overwhelmed!
But before you start generating the analytics data and create reports out of them, you must have a clear-cut plan in place to utilize the data efficiently. Without such a plan, even micro-analyses or intricately-detailed reports may not help you make decisions or accomplish your business goals with your analytics methodology.
So, to start with, you can create one weekly report with five or six dashboards displaying a variety of analytics data from different metrics. However, it is essential to keep the dashboard easy-to-understand and actionable. And when you have enough resources in the future, you can start collecting large volumes of analytics data (also known as Big Data) of your business. This data can then be analyzed to draw crucial insights that will help you take effective decisions and strategic steps in your business.
This related video should throw more light on this topic.
D) Can my analytics strategy keep a tab on the latest market trends?
Your analytics methodology must be capable of tracking the latest trends in the market, and the general perspective of your industry. Let’s discuss two hypothetical examples to clarify these aspects.
An XYZ company uncovers its best traffic source
This company notices that most of their traffic is coming from referral sites. They had failed to recognize this earlier as they were neither tracking this traffic source nor they had tagged it. They immediately tag and track this source. This helped them identify the different types of users landing on their site. Then the demographics and interests of the users got much clearer. This enabled the company to create content, ads, and products tailored to the needs of its referral visitors. The outcome was quite rewarding. Their revenue saw consistent growth in a period of just six months.
An online retail company fails in cross-checking personal details
The company does a sizeable investment in tagging this task. But before implementing this strategy, they realize that it is illegal to cross-check the personal details of their prospects via their analytics tool. And all the investment done towards this task went in vain.
Hence, being aware of the overall context of your industry is as crucial as knowing the market trends for a successful analytics strategy.
Being aware of these four points are eminently essential for implementing an efficient web analytics methodology. The knowledge of these four aspects will also enable you to effectively plan and put your tagging plan into action. It is also crucial to know why you are tracking the metrics. This will allow fine-tuning your analytics tracking process, effectively defining your KPIs, and shaping your business decisions.
A Step-by-Step Approach to a Successful Digital Analytics Strategy
Now, let’s check out how you must approach the web analytics tracking in order to make your web analytics strategy a resounding success. Start with the basic metrics first and keep adding more difficult ones as you move along. We will be only discussing the first 4 steps in this section.
Step 1 – Visits and Click-through Rates (CTRs)
First, analyze where your visitors are coming from. Look at the dimensions that will help you identify more about their interests and demographics. If your website depends on inbound marketing techniques to reach out to your audience, then SEO can also be incorporated in this step. Check which elements on the web pages are getting a higher number of clicks and which are getting the lowest.
In this very first step, you must identify which keywords and web activities are driving in visitors to your pages. This will also enable you to know the geographical locations of the visitors and the referring sites that are sending visitors your way. These are precious information that will help you optimize your website for more visitors and CTRs.
Step 2 – Bounce Rates and Pages per Visit
Once your web pages have started getting visitors, it’s time to check which content on your site is more popular. The metric to find that out is the Bounce Rate. Tracking the bounce rate will help you optimize your landing pages and also other elements on your site that are driving traffic to your landing pages. Such web elements are Calls-to-Action, offers, graphics, ad text, other text, and so on. Your goal must be to drive the right person to the right page and give them reasons to stay longer on your pages.
The other two metrics that you can track in this step are Pages-per-Visit or Page Depth. Tracking this metric will help you optimize your site for richer user experiences on both mobile devices and desktop computers.
Step 3 – Lead Generation or Conversions/Page Value
This is the step where you can start monetizing your site. If you own a B2B (Business-To-Business) company, then you can start generating leads at this stage. But if you have a B2C (Business-To-Customer) business, then it’s time to focus on conversions.
At this stage, you must identify the content that’s generating revenue. The metric to discover this is known as “Page Value”. In addition to focusing on the revenue-generating content, you must also concentrate and optimize those people or teams responsible for creating such content.
Step 4 – Cost Per Acquisition
At this stage, you must fiercely strive to obtain the maximum value from every dollar that you spend on marketing and advertising. The Cost-Per-Acquisition is the most appropriate metric that will help you keep track of how much value you are able to generate from your marketing and advertising campaigns.
If done right, this step will help you run your business more cost-effectively and enable you to spend money on useful activities that will increase the stakeholder value. This step will also discourage you from chasing those too-good-to-be-true claims advocated by those shady marketing experts!
Unless you have a robust digital analytics methodology in place, it can be quite hard to attract a targeted audience to your site and also help them find what they are looking for on your site! A well-designed strategy will help you accurately discover what your prospects want, and help you to be better prepared to offer that.
If you feel that your business needs a well-laid-out strategy for digital analytics, let Rawsoft help you design that for your business. Rawsoft has a plethora of customized services to match your organization’s analytics maturity. Our services include analytics implementation, tag management, reporting and analysis, testing and optimization, mobile analytics, and data visualization to name a few.
So please give us a call or send us an email to schedule a meeting!