Sometimes we let our values or assumptions dictate our business decisions. But how do we know if we’re making decisions that appeal to our customers’ needs and desires? If business is good, that’s a pretty solid indicator your ways are right. But what if business could be better? I think there’s always room for improvement, and it starts with customer research.
In this next series of articles, we explore ways we can learn from our customers – starting with web analytics.
Google Analytics is a free web tool that’s simple to use. First, you need to setup your Google Analytics account. Go to www.google.com/analytics. Follow the instructions and get a “tracking code” for your website. If you’re unsure how to proceed once you have your tracking code, contact your webmaster, your marketing company, or call us at PSPinc.com (1-800-232-3989). Most websites have easy ways to embed those codes so you can track the visitors to your pages.
Google Analytics can give you a lot of data about the people visiting your site, including where they come from, how they enter your site and where they exit.
Some things to look for include:
- Page Hits = how many pages are viewed
- Visitors = how many visits you had
- Unique Visitors = how many visitors are new to your site
- Bounce = meaning people are leaving your site
- Page Flow = shows how your visitors navigate through your website
So now you have all this data in front of you, but what do you do with it? Start asking questions. Here is a jumping off point:
How many people are visiting your site? Where are they coming from?
Who are they? Are they your target audience?
How are you attracting them? Are they spending time on pages you hoped they would hit?
Are they taking the “actions” you want them to take via your website?
What pages interest them the most? What pages do they leave from, and why?
Questioning this kind of data may help you develop some theories for testing your website’s appearance, content and functionality, and improve its performance altogether. Even a small tweak can make your homepage more effective.