Online Marketing: What Numbers Really Matter to Your Business?
Just a couple of decades ago, one of the biggest challenges businesses faced was trying to calculate how much mileage they actually got from their advertising and marketing efforts. The reason this task was so hard was because most options for determining whether new customers were the result of a recent campaign or an existing channel weren’t that accurate.
Thanks to all of the online analytics tools that are now available, businesses can easily see exactly how customers are getting to their website. However, just because this information is available doesn’t mean that every challenge has been eliminated. Since these programs are so good at collecting information, instead of having a shortage, many businesses are now drowning in data.
If you have lots of data at your fingertips but don’t know how to use it to improve your bottom line, here’s what you should be paying attention to:
Are Your Active Marketing Efforts Paying Off?
If your website received more visitors this month than it did last month, it’s easy to assume that your active marketing efforts are paying off. However, that conclusion may be incorrect. If you’re currently focusing on a channel like social media marketing or PPC advertising, digging into your analytics may reveal that the increase is actually the result of another source such as natural search engine traffic. While that doesn’t mean you need to abandon your current marketing focus, knowing what’s actually happening is crucial for making informed decisions about your marketing efforts.
Which Channels Convert the Best?
Not all marketing channels are created equal. Additionally, more is not necessarily better. While a source that drives 1,000 visitors to your site may seem great, if little to none of those visitors are converted into leads or customers, that traffic isn’t doing anything for your bottom line. Instead of simply glancing at your overall traffic numbers, it’s important to dig in a little more and discover what channels are ultimately sending the most customers.
Are Visitors Bailing at the Last Minute?
Most businesses have discovered that a merchant account and the ability to process payments online are absolute necessities for staying competitive. Unfortunately, not enough businesses spend time analyzing how well their payment process is working. Although it’s easy to get caught up in trying to drive more and more traffic to your site, a more effective option may be to focus on converting a larger percentage of your existing traffic. The first step you can take is looking at the analytics for your payment process. If you notice a single step or page that’s causing a lot of people to leave without actually submitting their payment, fixing that one issue can mean a noticeable boost in revenue.
Where are Your Easy Wins?
If people aren’t able to find what they want on your site, they’re going to leave. By looking for patterns in your data, you can see if there are any large gaps in your site’s content. If there are, all you’ll need to do to retain more of your visitors is to add that content to your site.
May 28, 2013