It’s Not All About Web Analytics

Analytics is one of those buzzwords that gets thrown around a lot. Most businesses realise that they should be doing it, but a lot of them might not be sure why. If you don’t fully understand why you are analysing your marketing data, then you probably aren’t getting any meaningful returns on it. In short, it’s a waste of your time if you are just doing analytics because you read an article online that said you should. Instead, you need to have a full understanding of the reasons why we analyse information about our businesses, and what it is you should actually be looking for. It isn’t a case of just saying web traffic is up, so we’re doing well. There are far more complexities involved and, depending on the nature of your business, there are different areas that you should be focussing on. If you think that you need more direction with your analysis, here is a step by step guide to developing a clear strategy.

Why Should I Analyse Data?

That’s the first question to ask. Everybody is going on about how important it is, but why? Some of the data that you look at will be simple. Did you see a rise in sales that coincided with the implementation of a new marketing campaign? If the answer is yes, then you’re doing something right. But it isn’t enough to just know that the marketing campaign is working. You need to know why, so you can recreate that success in the future. Looking at specific geographic areas can help you to determine which specific aspects of the campaign are working better than others. Age demographics are also a good indicator. If sales have increased in an area that has a younger average population, but not in other areas with more elderly people, then you know that you need to adapt your campaign to suit the needs of the older generation.

Web Analytics can be very useful as you can get a clear picture of exactly who is interested in your brand. This helps you to zone in on a target demographic that you know you will have success with, as well as highlighting areas that you need to improve on.

Web Analytics

Be careful here. Web analytics are very important, but in recent years, they’ve come to dominate the world of marketing. Too many businesses think that analysing online data is all that you need to do, and they have been neglecting the other areas of their campaign. This is dangerous because it means that you are missing out on a lot of potentially profitable information. Web analytics are fairly easy to keep on top of as you can use one of the many different web analytics tools out there to do all the hard work for you. It is also worth using a structured logging system on your website so you can easily log and search data on your visitors. Alongside that, it is always a good idea to have a customer feedback section on your website. It’s an easy way to bring in more information about the success of your site.

Marketing Analytics

Web analytics will give you some valuable information but don’t fall into the trap of thinking that they give you the whole picture. Offline marketing techniques are still just as valuable, and can often accent your online campaigns. Good old fashioned marketing analytics will help you get a broader idea about your campaigns and whether they actually work or not. Make sure you look at every tiny detail of your campaign, and don’t get bogged down in standard analytics formats, they won’t necessarily cover everything that will benefit you.

Another area that is often neglected is competitors performance. Most new businesses will spend a huge amount of time researching their rivals before they start up. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take long for this to fall by the wayside. Marketing teams get so wrapped up in gauging their own success that they forget to keep an eye on the competition. Information on other companies can be so valuable; if they are trying something and it isn’t working, you want to know about it so you can avoid the same mistakes. Similarly, if they are having a huge success with something, you are going to want to follow that trend so you don’t get left behind.

Don’t remember to think about the long term. It’s easy to think that you are on the right track because you have seen increases in sales over the last few months but that doesn’t mean that your marketing campaign will have staying power. Consumers can quickly become bored with some marketing campaigns, so you need to be realistic about their longevity and adapt as time goes on.
Remember, it’s not all about web analytics. If you spend enough time on all aspects of your marketing campaign, there is no reason that you can’t improve your performance.

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