Digital Analytics - How did that happen?

08/27/2017

One of the most often cited distinctions between digital and traditional business is the view that digital analytics is driven by the tools, rather than overt customer need or requests. 

This question was addressed in an interesting recent TechCrunch article. While the article makes sense, I felt the writer got bogged down in semantics rather than showing a developed proof of concept.

"The fault of marketing analytics platforms such as Google Analytics is that they track the source of traffic but not the cause of that traffic"

While the central tenet of the piece is that new marketers don't have "old school" skills, my view is (abundance view) Google Analytics gives you something new, rather than (scarcity view) reducing your overall "marketing effectiveness" by over reliance on one tool.

"50% of advertising is wasted, but I don't know which half!" John Wanamaker (1838 -1932)

The context then is that by digital analytics tools you know which half! 

By incrementally improving outputs, do we increase quality in the overall product? 

Or to put it another way, is having more information more useful in driving improved design decisions?

If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses. 

Social Psychology is ambivalent on the power of bulk information on decision making - so lets take an inference based approach rather than a deductive one. 

Caveat; Not all cause and effects sequences are correlated in traditional sales or business, neither is all analytics data valuable within the digital plane. 

History. We started AD360.eu in April 2017. 

To date there have been ...17,222 visitors

Broken down into monthly segments...

or daily page views...

Lets take a closer look at what they looked at ...

What we see above is that nearly half of all site visitors did not go past the landing page. Worth taking a look at - A/B testing different versions.

 Of the remainder, there is a clear interest in tools and platforms, indicating an interest in hard information on a fairly "fluffy"topic. Technical blog posts also have significant traction (thank you BeBee.com).

The final third shows a residual interst in the overall topic of advertising, consulting and branding. 

Consequently, in the next six month period we will focus our effort on culling surplus pages (20+currently), developing specificity in the top ten pages and address key customer interests.

Where did visitors come from...

At what time ...

Most users seem to like viewing the site early on a Sunday morning, interesting!

On what type of device...

Desktop, but rising on mobile. Let's track the trend and use this first touchpoint as a base.

Where in the process did they leave?

Many dropped off (58) between the blog page and the main site. The reason for this was a fairly obvious (in hindsight) omission. Previously, on posting a blog entry, we didn't add a next step at the end of the article. Users simply left the site at that point, having read the main article. We have since added a series of "call to action" buttons to all blog entries. 

Brand

We knew when we went for the name "AD360" that we would have to wait a while to develop Google search traffic. 

Firstly, because another well known product used the keyword. www.semrush.com/info/ad360+(keyword) and a direct competitor uses the key phrase "ad360 digital."

Secondly, people were not actually looking for us, as a brand :) new business. 

Search Engine (as a total of traffic - all time)

Search Engine - (As total of traffic - last 30 days)

What we see is that in the last month (30 days) we have generated the same level of search traffic as in the previous 5 months. This trend should continue.

We see that using the hashtag #AD360eu is proving successful in Google Search

To Conclude...

Taking just a cursory (sorry for that) look at the data, we can see Google Analytics gives ample information for decision making and developing inferences.

I can clearly track the visitor flow and relate it to customer points of interest. Key initiatives and their resulting impact can be mapped. 

A customer journey is organically self mapping itself onto my site wireframe.

 I know that I can (currently) develop a paid advertising campaign at less than 25 cents per winning ad. 

Obvious site errors can be corrected.

I can track and moderate trends and see overall performance against a number of baselines.

We can see that using the hashtag #AD360eu is successful with Google Search. 

Blog Posts are drawing traffic.

Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter and BeBee.com are significant traffic drivers - I can cross check that using own brand analytics tools (Pinterest, Twitter)

Key Takeaway...

Having site analytics doesn't make me a better marketer, it makes me a better analyst of a website's impact in the market. It is up to me (or you) to use the resulting information to best effect.