Seven Steps to a better analysis of the Web

 Seven Steps to a better analysis of the Web: Collecting and analyzing feedback online.Collecting and analyzing feedback online
Seven principles that all companies should master to stay competitive and satisfy customers online.
Collecting and analyzing feedback includes benchmarking and planning future improvements to the report's content and readability. Our hope is that you will see areas where your organization is strong, and find areas where you can improve as you embark down the road of continuous improvement through Web analytics.
1: Be real about putting customers first Focusing on the customer is one of the biggest cliches in business.  Everyone claims they're doing it, but few really are.

There are several ways to focus on your customers.  In the past, you might have spent time with actual customers in a retail branch, conducted a focus group, mailed a survey, or paid for a research report.  Today, you still need to do many of these things, but increasingly you can build your understanding of customers more by collecting and analyzing feedback online.

List the data sources you regularly consult to understand your customers and your market - whether it be face-to-face meetings, e-mail correspondence, or reports such as those generated by Google Analytics.

Think about the content of these interactions.
  • What things seem obvious to you about your customers?  
  • Have you ever validated these assumptions?  
  • What questions have you struggled with?  
You may be surprised by what you find, particularly if you're a manager and you realize you haven't actually talked to a customer in months.  Take ownership of customer understanding and make it part of your daily routine to get inside the minds of users.

Don't settle for "best practices" and secondhand knowledge.  Be curious.  For a marketer, there are few things more integral to success than customer understanding.
We'll come back to this point again and again as we explore the ins and outs of Google Analytics.

2: Know your desired outcomes
With analytical marketing, everything ultimately comes back to value whether that value is profit or another measure that relates to the fiscal reality of your organization.  For a nonprofit organization, "value" may simply be engaging with a particular community of users.

Google Analytics contains an unbelievable quantity of information.  It is easy to look at all this information and not know to what to do with it.

The trick is to stay focused on your business objectives by asking questions about your data that tie back to specific business goals.  Instead of asking how many visitors your Web site had yesterday, ask how many leads it generated for your sales team.  Instead of asking how many visitors arrive at your site through search engines, ask how much revenue those visitors generated.

If you're wondering whether your research question is a good one, put it through the "why" test.
Keep asking why you want to know something until you get back to a specific c bottom-line business objective, such as revenue, cost-savings, or customer satisfaction.  If you don't lose sight of these bottom-line objectives, you'll avoid the analysis paralysis that has so many companies stuck.
You can't do analytical marketing without business objectives.  It's like trying to optimize the postal system when you don't know how to send a letter.

3: Keep it simple
The Web provides users with an unprecedented amount of choice and information.  At the same time, because there's so much information available online, users need to be careful how they spend their mental energy.  If they give too much attention to any one source without being sure they're going to get what they came for, they risk failing in their search.

Smart companies have learned to thrive online by keeping functionality, design, and content straightforward and fast-loading.
Keep content easy to scan, use visuals, and avoid jargon and self-promotion.  Be as open and direct as possible and focus on a two-way relationship with your customers rather than bluntly telling them what to think.

4: Embrace change
that innovating and experimenting means that sometimes you will fail.  To excel at Web analytics, you need to expect failures and setbacks and thus create an environment that makes setbacks okay.  If you work inside a rigid culture, failure can be extremely difficult at first.  Your company may refuse to compromise on style guides.  Your company may have committees that need to sign off on changes, or a boss who always likes to play it safe.

The bottom line is that the Web rewards experimentation in a way the offl ine world does not.  Instant feedback on the results of a change, the ability to easily provide different experiences to different customers, and the ability to roll back changes at a moment's notice are all game-changers.

5: Treat data as a strategic asset
The Web can provide a wealth of data on visitor behavior.  This data is a valuable tool for understanding customers, but it takes work to realize its value.  Companies need to invest not only in a strong foundation for measurement, but also in the expertise and organizational elements needed to analyze data and socialize findings.  is a mnemonic for five areas you'll need to address as part of your measurement strategy:

  •  Goals and strategy: You can't do analytical marketing without measurable business goals.  If you don't have goals in place, start here.
  •  Expertise: Tools alone will not do Web analytic for you.  You need smart people and time.  You also need an analytics champion and a permanent home for analytic s in your organization.
  •  Tools: Installing and validating Google Analytics is a great start but you need to make sure Google Analytics is installed and configured appropriately for your business.
  •  Unified data: Web analytics alone isn't enough to realize data as a strategic asset.  You also need qualitative and competitive data.  No matter what tools you have available, it's crucial that you integrate data sources to answer complex questions and maintain integrity in the information you collect and share.
  •  Process integration: Integration is where the rubber meets the road.  Web analytic is a means to understanding your customers and providing a more efficient online experience.  But you will only begin to realize value from analytics data when it is applied to actual decisions.

It is a mistake when companies focus only on tools and forget the other four areas.  True analytical marketing pervades every area of ​​practice, from the broadest strategic questions to the most mundane tactical issues.

6: Use the right tool for the right job
We want you to get the most value possible from your Google Analytics data, but at the same time, we want to make sure you understand the other options available.  Most important, Google Analytics is geared toward quantitative data about visitors on your Web site.  There are specialized tools to obtain qualitative insight into your visitors' intentions and satisfaction, as well as tools that can give you quantitative metrics about your market and competitors.  

These tools provide context on your performance while helping you understand why your data looks as it does.  Without competitive and qualitative data, it's extremely difficult to make heads or tails of your analytics.

7: Expect and accept accountability
With this new world of measurement comes an opportunity to drive change, to optimize through making constant advances.  The catalyst to making change, to taking action in marketing, can best be summed up by the word accountability.  Accountability in marketing can be defined simply as "using data to prove the value of marketing rather than relying on subjunctives alone."

Businesses must hold marketers more accountable, and do so in real or near real time.  Other fields readily accept accountability, and are even dependent on it think finance or manufacturing, for example and so must marketing.  Why must?  Because companies that make marketing accountable will grow stronger, gaining an advantage over companies who don't, leaving simple market theory to do the rest.

Accountability shouldn't become a dark shadow following you around the offi ce (take note, directors, VPs, and CEOs) but rather a means by which you can identify success and failure and learn from what went well and what went badly.


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