Web analytics are crucial in the digital marketing process. Although often overlooked by web marketers and content managers, your metrics offer a unique, trustable source of information that let’s you know what’s working (and what’s not).
The underlying potential of web analytics is virtually limitless as you can be as granular or as broad as you like.
In reality, many companies miss the mark and end up with either too little data to make a significant choice, or so much information that finding relevant patterns is near impossible.
Let’s explore 5 areas of analytics tracking that you cannot afford to miss!
- 1. Define your KPI's and track them
Deciding your key performance indicators (KPI’s) is often the first rung on the analytics ladder.
Too many organisations place emphasis on generic metrics as KPI’s such as number of pages visited, average time on site etc. Working towards more concrete KPI’s like subscriber rates and number of leads generated will often show the most value to you and your team.
Whilst there may be some overlap between different businesses, it’s essential that you work out your internal measures of success.
Think to yourself, what indicators show my success as a marketer, help provide a larger pipeline to our sales team or help to improve the bottom line?
- 2. Build a monetisation approach
Gathering actionable intel should be the main focus of your analytics process. After all, what would be the point in creating many charts and graphs if they can’t help you do better business?
Monetising your goals in Google Analytics (or preferred analytics software) is a surefire way of helping you work out your true ROI. If you’re running a paid search campaign, working out the value of each visit against the cost of each lead sent through will let you know the true effectiveness of your activity.
The process is generally simple – for each goal you create based on an event or page visit, you can assign a monetary value. This way you can report of estimated value provided by your site, not just number of downloads, forms filled in etc.
Working out just what amount to assign to each action can be an uphill battle. Start working out the average lifetime value of your buyers, then divide this by the number of leads you generate, number of subscribers and overall number of visits to your site.
- 3. Create and track your custom events
Knowing how users engage with your website is just as important as how they got there. Using custom event tracking can really help in this case.
There are many event types that you may want to track to help you figure out if your entire user journey, or a small subset of it is causing issues for your potential customers. You might want to:
- know when the user has started and ended a video view on your website
- see how users interact with your accordions, tabs and other hidden content
- check how often dialog and lightboxes have been loaded
- be aware of users who interact with external links and downloads
Using WordPress? You might want to try out a plugin like WP Google Analytics Events. Or, looking for something a little more complex in terms of setup, or outside of the WP environment? Reach out – we’d be happy to discuss your needs!
- 4. Create filters and ban IPs
Creating filters and excluding traffic from particular IP addresses is best practice.
From your own visits and those of your team, to 3rd party apps and extensions you use on your site, to over-zealous visits from companies soliciting their services, the list of meaningful data is vast.
Start by speaking to your internal IT team about the range of IP addresses you can discount as company visits.
Also speak to your various suppliers and partners – you’ll be able to prevent their visits from skewing your overall stats, or at a minimum filter their visits into a separate view in your analytics dashboard.
You can also take the time to understand the networks and IP addresses of visits from bots and automated traffic – you may see these in your analytics reports as visits that last 0 seconds. Whether its your SEO software checking your page, or even an approved tool that helps you to preload your cache, it is always better to remove these anomalous results.
- 5. Personalise your dashboards
Did you know that you can create multiple dashboards in Google Analytics to help give you an overview of specific data patterns?
You may need to report on traffic sources to your team, to work out which sources of referral are working best for you. Or perhaps a more detailed analysis of social activity is needed when working on upcoming digital marketing plans.
You can create a dashboard showing almost any variation of data, custom segment, user group, behaviour pattern etc.
It may seem like an overwhelming amount of options to consider. But fret not, you can access a range of public dashboard setups from the Google Analytics Solutions Gallery.
Here, you’ll find preset dashboards from users who’ve faced similar challenges to you. So, whether you want to follow a solution to the letter, or use a setup as a starting point for your own needs, it couldn’t be easier.
- The data age is yesterday …
… not today.
If you’ve not got a strong metrics and data insights process in place, then the time to act is now.
Marketers are dealing with an ever evolving, increasingly savvy group of prospects and customers. Understanding and catering to their varying needs is a requirement, and not a recommendation if you want to survive.
The use of analytics tools provides you the closest and most honest insights as to what user’s perceive your brand to be, and how to build rapport in a genuine way.
If you need support in deciphering which visits matter from those that don’t, speak to an SEO agency who have a passion for the tech aspects of optimisation. We’d be crazy if we didn’t include ourselves in that list!
You can speak to our team today on 0203 773 6772 or arrange a callback to discuss your analytics needs.