Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Website Analytics Overdose

Why is website analytics so difficult?

You are not alone.

Why do business people struggle with understanding website analytics or even understanding the potential of what analytics can deliver to your business? It starts in a number of different ways but really what we have to do is look at analytics with the right understanding of the potential of what it can do. Analytics are essential to your online integrated marketing plan. Anything you do online can be tracked, tested, and optimized. If you're not using analytics properly or not at all, then you don't know what to do to improve your marketing.
Website Analytics Overdose
Website Analytics Overdose

If you have a website and you're using your website for sales, leads or content distribution then analytics are your primary means of measurement. It's the only way to know if you are really making money with your website.  Analytics is the only way to know what your website is doing. If you are doing any search engine optimization, pay per click, email campaigns, online display or any type of conversion testing then analytics is for you. It will make your website better.  If you're doing any of those things then the only way you're going to know if they're truly working is analytics.

Website Analytics will provide a specific return on investment measurement for all of your marketing activities. It's a requirement for anyone involved in online marketing.  The issue with analytics is that there is no formal schooling. There are no university or college courses which will allow you to major in website analytics.

Google offers a few online courses and some universities do as well. Very few get into the specifics of how analytics work and what they provide.  In reality anyone in this industry has less than 20 years of true experience. That has resulted in people having to take their own initiative to learn how to do things better, whether through attending conferences, reading books or utilizing digital training courses.

Is analytics a marketing responsibility or an IT responsibility? Traditionally IT has been responsible for analytics even though marketing needs it to better understand what's happening. Analytics involves multiple disciplines of understanding. There is a technical side of analytics, a marketing side and an implementation side.

The result of analytics is to have a better approach to how you budget your online marketing. You will better know where you can spend the money for the most effective return. You can set specific targets of where you want to be because you now know where you are. Without analytics, without understanding all of these things you can't have clear goals, clear budgets, clear expectations for how each of your campaigns are going to run.

Whenever anyone says I think this will works. That should tell you that they are not running in an analytics based environment. An analytics based integrated marketing plan focuses on testing in order to try those assumptions, come to a conclusion and improve the site based on the findings.

Steve Steinberger

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