Today we have a guest post by Gilad Maayan from the Web Analytics & BI Wiki:
In today’s fast-paced industry, companies face multiple challenges as they attempt to form a solid marketing strategy that meets business objectives. These challenges include managing marketing technology across the organization, difficulties in reaching prospects, driving customer engagement across a multitude of platforms, and tackling the complex world of web analytics.
Apparently, tackling analytics for your website is a challenge even for seasoned marketers. A recent survey by Think with Google uncovered specific challenges related to analytics technologies – namely, 61% of marketing decision makers struggled to access or integrate the data they needed in 2016.
Here are three types of web analytics challenges businesses are dealing with today and some ideas on how to solve them.
1. Too Many Metrics
In today’s industry, access to web metrics is the name of the game. But many marketing teams tend to go too far and become web analytics fanatics. Knowing which metrics to measure is important, but how do you make sure you’re measuring the right metrics? Or maybe you’re using too many metrics, without clear guidelines on what to do with the results?
According to Jay Baer of Convince & Convert, just because you can measure something, doesnt mean you should. Identify the metrics that are important to your business goals. Don’t measure all metrics obsessively, but identify the few metrics that do require closer attention, such as visitors and pageviews, conversion rates, top pages, and more.
2. Data Accuracy and Data Security Issues
Another challenge related to web analytics is that site performance data isn’t always accurate. Issues such as missing tracking code on web pages, data sampling with skewed results, ad block services that filter out valuable analytics data, and incorrect data filters are only a few examples of where you things can go wrong.
Beyond plain website analytics, mobile and web apps introduce additional complexities. Even if your mobile app analytics is spot on and you’re tracking the right metrics for your apps, this doesn’t ensure that you have full visibility of your users’ various data sessions.
Make sure that untracked or overly exposed data isn’t causing privacy or security vulnerabilities. Recent data privacy regulations are forcing US companies to put data privacy front and center, reviewing data security policies and ensuring better workflow management to prevent data breaches or even cyber attacks.
A solid network is key to protecting the systems running behind the scenes, those systems in charge of your users’ data. Define proper monitoring procedures, put security testing in place, and make sure to reach full application visibility to track performance at all levels and protect your system against application-level threats.
3. Insufficient Knowledge
In the survey mentioned above by Think with Google, 26% of marketers said they didn’t have the right analytics talent to meet marketing objectives, such as improving campaign effectiveness. They reported it was a struggle to get buy-in and support from executives.
Even if your organization has already established a suite of web analytics tools to provide meaningful insights into user behavior, you might be working hard to deal with the information overload. Add web analytics dashboards, customer experience tools, heatmaps, and BI analytics into the mix, and you’re sure to be overwhelmed.
One way to address this challenge is to use a reporting platform that simplifies the way you view your data (take a look at Logaholic, which does just that).
But even before you drill into a specific metric or technology, you might need to take a step back, widen your perspective, and improve your general understanding of the space of web analytics, BI, and big data.
This was one of the motivations the Web Analytics & BI Wiki built by CoolaData – makers of a big data behavioral analytics platform. The team at CoolaData took on a project to make the available content about web analytics and BI for digital marketing more accessible. The wiki is the first knowledge hub that collects all the relevant information on the subject and organizes it in a meaningful structure.
There are many additional resources that can help you get a better grasp on BI and big data concepts, for example, gurus such as Avinash Kaushik can guide you through some first steps in figuring out web analytics.
Most organizations are convinced they lag behind their peer group when it comes to deploying and managing the performance of marketing technology. The CMO of a Fortune 100 company was embarrassed to admit that her team struggled to manage all of their technology. Believe me – we are all in the same boat.
For many companies, the acquisition and implementation of new technology has gotten ahead of the logistics of tracking and managing data that is already in place. In this article, we discussed three common challenges businesses face when incorporating web analytics technologies and how to tackle them.
But there are many more. The fast-changing digital marketing industry introduces daily questions: How should we address big data? How do we support a multitude of platforms, especially IoT devices? Which marketing processes should we automate, and how to improve existing automation?
Don’t run from your challenges – identify them, and find strategies to solve them. With a balance between the right tools, solid professional expertise, and knowledge about the latest trends, you’re already on the right track to meeting your goals.