Using Web Analytics to Create What People Will Actually Care About

There are several areas of your digital marketing (beyond your website) that can benefit through the use of your web data. It’s really all about breaking down those digital silos and using insights across platforms and tactics. It’s so useful to do this because consumer behavior in one area nearly always provides insight and actionable metrics for another. Today, let’s explore some of the ways you can use your web data specifically to create what people will actually care about from a marketing perspective.

Improve Your Mobile Apps and Sites With Analytics

Using your web data to provide a better mobile experience is essential. The data you’re already collecting provides insight into what you should implement from a mobile perspective. At a high level, you can quickly see how many of your visitors access your site via mobile device, and if you haven’t yet, use that data to make a case to create a mobile site (if you still lack one – don’t laugh, a surprising amount of people do). If you’ve already got a site and are exploring mobile apps, analyzing what devices your visitors already prefer will help you make a case for what platforms you should build on.

Start Remarketing via Google Analytics

Google Analytics offers Remarketing, which lets you tap into insights about your website visitors who show an interest in your products and services – for example, visitors who spend time viewing specific pages or who put items in their shopping cart. Once you’ve identified your audience, you can run ads across the Google Display Network (GDN) that are tailored to that audience.

Consider creating lists of interested users by the type of content they’ve viewed on the site or by what they do on the site. For example, make a list of undecided shoppers who have viewed specific pages or categories of the site. Perhaps those that have viewed the catalogue section but haven’t yet completed a purchase. You can also reach users who have visited potential promotion pages of your site or your store locator page.

Remarketing using your web data is powerful, as you can segment users by metrics such as visit duration (or how much time they’ve spent on the site – telling you how engaged they are with the site) or if they’ve bounced from a landing page and are not engaged. These metrics add another layer of qualifying interested visitors based on their site behavior.

Let Analytics Help Improve Your PPC

Linking a Google Analytics account to your AdWords account can help you analyze where people who click on your ads go once they reach your website. This information can shed light on how much of your website traffic or sales is driven by AdWords. It can also tell you where people decide to leave your website, and what parts of your website are most attractive to your potential customers. Once you link AdWords and Analytics accounts, you can even import some of these Analytics statistics into your AdWords account, so you can view them alongside your standard AdWords data.

Using Web Analytics and not just AdWords (or whatever advertising management tool you’re using) to analyze your campaign performance is critical and will provide the “other side” of the picture of how your advertising traffic is performing. This will greatly assist you in optimizing your campaigns on a go-forward.

Create More Sharable Social Content From Analytics Insights

While many use social monitoring and web monitoring tools like Google Alerts to get ideas for new content to create in social (such as platform updates and blog posts), some of the most useful insights are available in your own web analytics. A dead-simple tactic every marketer should implement right now is looking at the most socially successful pages on their website and create additional resources in a similar vein. For example, if you drafted a resource on “top 20 ways to solve X problem” in your category, it may be worth taking a fresh look and creating a new version of that resource and re-promoting. The point is, you can look at what the web is organically sharing that you’re creating. It’s especially interesting to find the content you have never even promoted and that has caught on 100 percent naturally. This is one of the strongest signals you’ve created something genuinely sharable.

These are just a few ideas to get started using your web analytics to make your customers truly love your marketing initiatives. For the ideas that work best, begin to use data formally, as part of a process. This will help you improve your marketing over the long term and improve bit-by-bit, every day.

Web Data image on home page via Shutterstock.

This column was originally published on Jan. 7, 2013.

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