Approaching Web Analytics

Consumers today want to see targeted, short, specific, sharable content that also allows for speedy responses to inquiries. As society toda...

Consumers today want to see targeted, short, specific, sharable content that also allows for speedy responses to inquiries. As society today becomes more diverse and immersed in technology, business must fill the needs of their prospective customers and realize that their content needs to be able to reach the consumers, not the other way around. That is where web analytics comes into play.

Web Analytics Consultants use web analytics to read the digital advertising activity of users and interpret its value. Data from web analytics can help marketers create shareable, attention-grabbing, innovative content and it can help a business create a website that will allow them to promptly follow up with users in order to deepen relationships, earn trust, drive engagement, and maximize their marketing conversion rate. It can also help businesses analyze activity from a single user and, with the help of specialized software, create that targeted experience users today are really looking for.

Learning Web Analytics from Advanced Web Analytics

Our goal is to help you become the most successful web analytics consultant you can become with the information provided in this textbook. We have done our utmost to compile information that will help you become an asset to the web analytics field.

We will be focusing on ways that you, as web analytics consultant, can become prepared to step out into the world and take on jobs with confidence. Our goal is to make sure that you are thoroughly prepared, both in your mind-set and in the methods you will use to perform your job.

We will be discussing the various methods available for your use, the role you will be filling as a consultant and the future of web analytics as a whole.

Does the web have a bright future?

The reach of today’s technology and social media allows consumers to interact with an immediacy that was not possible for the Baby Boomers and Generation Xers. The people using technology today have changed the face of consumer marketing, forcing businesses to rethink and change the way in which they market their products and services.

What is Web Analytics

The Internet has created a platform in which businesses can reach out to consumers on a much larger scale but still allows them to develop trust and build customer loyalty. Consumers today often use their devices while in-store to look up product information, check prices and read reviews from other customers who have actually used the product.

This availability of information, advice, opinions and feedback create new situations that marketers must take into account when creating webpages, mobile pages and advertisements. Recognizing the importance of marketing strategies that work across multiple devices, channels and media venues is key.

As this is the case, businesses are investing in media and data analysis tools that will allow them to create that personalized experience that consumers desire while measuring the true effectiveness of their marketing strategies. These tools and programs also help businesses use the data gathered to adapt their efforts as necessary.

With all of these programs and tools available to businesses do you think that a bright future lies ahead of you? Is the field of web analytics going to continue growing in the future?

Business Management and the Internet

Business managers can be categorized by the way they utilize the Internet

While most business are stepping into the future and doing their best to change with the times, there are still those that choose not to. Or rather, their managers choose not to. This type of business manager is known as an outsourcing-type manager. They are characterised by the way they believe that while the web might be important to their business in the future, it currently does not provide a good connection with their customers.

Another type of manager is known for choosing to apply examples of successful marketing that they are exposed to on the TV or through word-of-mouth. They generally pass any web-related work off to their IT department or hire web production companies and ignore what is right in front of their noses.

Managers that ignore the Internet are falling intodisfavor
As we have been discussing, the Internet has a truly substantial impact on marketing in today’s world. Whether these managers like it or not, the fact is that consumers look at their smartphones around 1,500 times a week. The smartphone is an integral tool for the consumer, which has surpassed the television, newspaper and even word-of-mouth.

The power that the Internet holds over companies can be seen everywhere and managers that bury their heads in the sand are going to be replaced by others that will use every method available to them to increase their profits and know how to react when something goes very wrong. there have been cases where even one post on a social media outlet like Twitter can cause millions of dollars in damage to the company.

For example, a user posts a photo that features an insect inside their cup of ramen and then tweets about it. This person will have impacted the company in a negative manner and cause a decrease in sales. No matter how much a company ignores the web, it will always pose a risk.

Managers that choose to copy marketing strategies that they have heard about run the risk of huge failures as well. They forget that implementing a strategy that worked well for someone else might not work well for their business. There are so many factors to take into account that just trying out an idea will most likely lose their company money rather than gaining them the profit they were hoping for.

Web analytics consultants help managers create strategies that will result in profits.

B2B Marketing and the Internet

Business-to-Business i.e. B2B or BtoB Marketing is another important step that must be considered when creating marketing strategies. B2B marketing focuses on meeting the needs of other businesses, allowing them to fill the demands of their customers.

For example, we have a clothing store that wants to sell a specific brand of shirt. The shirt does not just appear in a box for them to hang in their store and sell to customers. They must source the clothing from another business that in turn source from places that sell the raw materials needed. In this case, we can follow the chain from the cotton farm (if it is a cotton shirt), to the business that spins the cotton into yarn, to the business that weaves the yarn into fabric, to the business that designs, creates and distributes the finished product, to the final business that stocks the product and sells it to customers.

Each one of these businesses is trying to turn a profit and must advertise and communicate with other businesses while considering various factors. They must remember that buyers are looking for products that will be of low cost and high quality. Therefore, creating websites that will promote the idea that they can provide exactly what the other business is looking for is vital to completing the purchasing cycle. B2B companies will always refer to websites before engaging in transactions.

Websites Affect Your Business

Business managers must take a variety of factors into account when deciding how to promote their business. Will they have a website created? Will they publish ads online? Will they publish ads offline? Will they hire a web analytics consultant or assign the work to their in-house IT department? Will they use cross-media promotions? Will their company become active on social media sites? The questions go on and on and how they are answered affects the company and its profits.

In most cases today, business managers will choose to create a website. The type of website depends on the company, but even the smallest online presence will be positive.

This website is the face of the company. With the vast amount of people doing research online, creating a great first-impression is vital to attracting potential customers. Making sure that their experience on your website is quick, smooth and productive will help turn those visitors into customers.

There are occasionally situations where a company website might be put under a microscope for other purposes as well.

For example, your business may need a loan from a bank. During the initial assessment, the bank will go to the company website and what they see will affect their decision.

Marketing to Consumers in Different Parts of the World

Consumers today are reshaping the way advertising is handled both online and offline. When creating marketing strategies, you will need to take into account the fact that not only will prospective customers actually use their smartphones to compare prices while in a store, they might end up choosing to purchase the item online and have it delivered to their door if the information they find is better than what might literally be right in front of them. This type of choice is different for shoppers in different areas of the world.

Let’s look at a customer computer shopping in Japan and a customer computer shopping in America.

Something that online marketers must take into consideration is that people from around the world have different methods of shopping for goods. Since we are looking at people shopping for computers, we need to look at the types of electronic stores available and their websites.

The definition of an electronic store is very different in Japan than it is in most other countries. Japan has stores like Yodobashi Camera, Yamada Denki and Bic Camera, huge electronic megastores that stock almost every available type of technology available, from smartphones to refrigerators, on their sales floors. Most western countries do not provide the same kind of shopping experience to their customers.

It is hard for westerners to imagine, but these chain megastores can be up to twelve stories tall and carry everything. They have full floors the size of a Super Target just for computers, TV’s, video games, toys, home electronics, cameras, bicycles, even suitcases… truly everything.

A Japanese consumer will see ads online, or on the TV or train and most likely do some research online to try and narrow down their options before going to their local electronics store. With the help of a sales agent they will then pick out the computer they want from the thousand or so that are on the sales floor and take it home that day. Even the smaller electronic shops have more options available than stores in North America and Europe.

A shopper in North America will have a completely different experience. They might go into their local electronic store hoping to buy a computer they saw advertised online or on TV, see the ten options available and then pull out their smartphone to look at more options yet again. They will then most likely choose to purchase their new computer from an online store rather than their local shop and have it delivered to their home.

American consumers often run into the problem of going to a store like Best Buy and finding signs that actually send them to the store website to buy technology rather than being able to see, touch and feel the items that are for sale. It can be rather frustrating for western consumers to shop for new technology, but the stores are succeeding in getting more people to their websites. Many stores even offer in-store pick-up for items purchased online.

In fact, the American shopping mind-set has changed drastically since the Internet and e-commerce websites appeared. People often choose to hit the Internet and do a bit of research when they want to make a purchase. American-based websites and web marketers are fully aware of this trend and use it to their full advantage. It is important to note that consumers will often switch between sites to find the best deals available to them in terms of price, options available and shipping costs. Many people are joining Amazon Prime for the deals, selection and delivery speed they offer.

Web Analytics and the Internet

People choose to buy products that suit their preferences or lifestyle. Consumers today demand new types of marketing that meets their needs. Web analytics follows digital footprints and browsing histories in order to help businesses target consumers that will want the goods or services they offer.

Web analytics consultants take the data gathered from the websites that consumers visit and transform it into marketing strategies that will attract potential customers and websites that turn them into paying customers. They can use web analytics software to perform advanced analysis of a business audience, manage data, track e-commerce data, perform multichannel campaign Analysis and a huge variety of other services that are profitable for their clients.

Traditional advertising strategies i.e. push/pull advertising is not enough anymore. While it is still a good idea to push products towards customers using big ads and attention-grabbing claims, consumers today need more interaction and instant gratification in order to help them trust a company. The relationships built through social media, email and interactive marketing help businesses expand the number of consumers that are loyal to their brand. Consumers that are loyal, will often recommend the business to friends or family through word-of-mouth or post about products, services or even reviews that other people on the internet can read and take into account when they are shopping.

Web Specialists

There Are Multiple Types of Web Specialists
Web specialists fall into a few different categories:

There are those who are knowledgeable, but as they work under managers who choose to out-source, do not get to utilize their skills.

There are those who have no idea what they are doing and are bound to fail.

There are those who are so over-worked that they cannot do their jobs properly as they tend to focus on the work and work flow rather than the content and how it will contribute to the business as a whole.

These specialists are kept busy performing frequent web updates, devising new website services, planning new services and introduction support, and dealing with demands from inside and outside the company. Whenever there are new trending technologies or techniques, during meetings, they always have to think about how such things can be used to the company’s advantage. While it is impossible for them to deal with everything, they find the willpower to negotiate and strike compromises with their manager.

None of the specialist types mentioned above utilize their skills properly. In order to really do their jobs to the best of their abilities, web specialists must find the balance between knowledge, work, presentation and creating profits.

A truly successful web specialist will use their skills to:
  • Enable a business to measure, analyze and optimize marketing strategies based on their defined KPIs.

  • Effectively present reports and Analysis, in person or digitally, to a wide range of team members, from entry-level to senior executives.

  • Help drive business requirements for Google Analytics implementation and supporting analytics tools, programs, etc.

  • Create a user-friendly website, create dashboards, perform analysis and identify actionable insights while working closely with the marketing team.

  • Work with marketing managers in analyzing performance metrics and key performance indicators.

  • Consider the use of the digital marketing trifecta: owned media, social media and paid media.

  • Use multichannel retailing or marketing used by shops where sales are linked to the web.

  • Use the data gathered to help create marketing strategies and transform business questions into experiments that will in turn optimize said marketing strategies.

  • Troubleshoot tagging or implementation issues with external vendors and web development teams to ensure issues are solved quickly.

  • Link ads to POS data in order to encourage customers to make more purchases after they have completed their transaction.
There are businesses that automatically display Facebook advertisements that match the personality and purchase preference of their member.

Consider the kind of information they want to present in sales advertising using the web and digital advertisements or on multimedia devices such as smartphones.

It can be challenging for one person to do all of these things, plus more that are not listed above. That is one of the reasons the Web Industry exists as it does today.

The Web Industry

Job Categories in the Web Industry

The web industry encompasses so many different facets that many different types of jobs are needed to cover everything. These positions include, but are not limited to:
  • System Engineer
  • Web Analyst
  • Web Designer
  • Web Developer
  • Web Director
  • Web Engineer
  • Web Marketer
  • Web Producer
  • Web Programmer
  • Web Publication Designer
  • Web Writer
  • Webmaster

Paid and Free Services

People who work in the web industry are often paid using the man-month calculation. However, with the use of social media among others, applying man-month calculation as it is makes it hard for the client to understand. It is important to change the point of view in capturing the consultants or vendors’ contributions to the results as well as the method of remuneration such as only charging the ratio contributed in the results. It is important to note that having clients work directly with coders and designers can end badly because most clients have no appreciation for the type of personality and work ethic it takes to get good at coding or proper design.

Since almost anyone can enter the web industry, both freelance outsourcing and offshoring development (where projects are outsourced to an individual contractor or subsidiary company in another country) have become common.

It is also important to note that both design and program development costs have been minimized or made free. Open-source software (a type of software with a source code publicly available is usually free) and freeware (free-to-use web programs) are directed towards beginners who want to start creating websites for free. Web designers can use HTML, CSS and clip JavaScript from thousands of free sources.

A common technique that does not use owned media to advertise, is to utilize free social media venues such as Facebook and social media apps such as Line. For example, in Thailand, as Facebook pages have taken the place of websites their website production costs have rapidly declined.

Websites and Marketing

Web designers are responsible for creating the look and feel of a website while web developers are more focused on the way a website works than how it looks. A webmaster is the person who maintains the web server, keeps the website running on a daily basis, makes content updates, and bridges the gap between the user, the development team, and the company.

The best kind of website a business can create is one that is user-friendly and designed with SEO and conversions in mind. The optimal website will not only fit every screen size, from a mobile to a PC, but will return help promote traffic and sales.

A website can help your customers find you. You can provide contact details, a map to your shop, tell consumers about your products or services and promote special offers. You can improve customer service by giving out useful information and enabling customers to offer feedback.

The marketing opportunities that the internet presents go much wider and deeper than this.

Attracting consumers to your website is vital. You must have customers to have sales and earn profits. Simple things like email marketing campaigns, promoting your website, and including your web address on business cards can help.

One of the best ways to get visibility is to appear high up in search engine rankings. Search engine optimization and pay per click advertising are generally considered the best ways to get people to your site.

Social media marketing is often used by businesses to build up their brand and reputation, engage with customers, and ultimately boost sales.



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