"...Web analytics is becoming one
of the hot sectors in Internet marketing and e-commerce technology. Increasingly,
brand and e-commerce managers -- under pressure to deliver a return on
investment -- are looking to the technology to help shape and optimize
their Web sites." Internet.com, October 28, 2002
The goal of any web presence should be to improve the business as a whole
and complement its offline marketing and sales efforts. In other words,
to help it achieve maximum profitability.
In order to do this, your online strategy must:
Drive targeted traffic to your site, persuade site visitors to take the
desired actions you want them to take, and use Web metrics to analyze
and measure user behavior.
Performing these objectives correctly will ensure that you have an
effective marketing campaign and increased sales for your business.
Let's look at each of these objectives further:
Objective 1: Drive Targeted Traffic to Your Site
Driving targeted traffic begins with a search engine marketing (SEM)
campaign including pay-per-click advertising (PPC) and a search engine
optimization (SEO) strategy.
It's important to determine which keywords are worth pursuing in your
PPC and SEO efforts. Tools like Wordtracker
should be used to generate a
list of possible keyword phrases. Determine how frequently each phrase
is searched for, and evaluate which are feasible enough to put efforts
into by checking how steep the competition is. Make your selections
and test them out in your PPC and SEO campaigns.
Researching and selecting effective keywords is extremely important.
Be sure to select keywords that your target market would use to find
you. With web metrics and analysis in place, you will be able to tell
where people are coming from, what keywords they used to find you, and
whether they are taking the desired actions on your site. If the wrong
keywords are chosen, you may find that you have high rankings, but the
wrong audience is visiting.
Objective 2: Persuade Your Web Site Visitors To
Take the Desired Action
Whether you are selling a product or service, obtaining newsletter
subscribers, or enticing people to download a software demo, your
ultimate goal is getting your site visitors to take a desired action.
In order to do this you must have a compelling site that draws the
visitor in, and then guides them to the goal.
Design and site architecture factors such as usability, navigation,
content, and ad copy all come into play here. The key is to monitor
how well these factors work at persuading your visitors into taking
action. With web metrics you can monitor everything and see what's
working and what's not. Armed with this knowledge, you can make the
appropriate changes to your site; continue your monitoring, and repeat
the process until you get an increase in the desired outcome.
Objective 3: Use Web Metrics To Analyze Visitor
The area of web metrics and analysis is new and evolving. Compared to
traditional offline marketing, the Internet provides an unparalleled
opportunity to specifically measure how a customer interacts with a
business. Web metrics and analysis will help you to monitor and
improve objectives 1 and 2. This is done by paying close attention to
where visitors are coming from, learning what keywords were used to
find your site, seeing how they navigated through it, and what actions
they took along the way. This information becomes a powerful tool in
growing your business.
The first web metrics were commonly known as traffic logs or site
statistics. These measured things like server hits, unique visitors,
repeat visitors, entry pages, exit pages, first page visited, second
page visited, and average time spent on a page or the site.
Today's newer log analysis software can show us more business-specific
web metrics. These include conversion ratios, browse-to-buy rates and
customer-acquisition costs. As research and development in this area
continues, we will see new metrics appear, along with improved tools
to measure them.
Currently, with the right tools it is possible to monitor web
visitors' behavior such as how and where they found your site, what
pages they landed on, and whether they took the desired actions you
wanted them to take. For this information to be worthwhile, however,
you need to use it to adjust your SEM strategies, keyword selection,
site architecture and design as necessary. Basically, you should test
and improve what is working, eliminate what isn't and figure out new
approaches that will work even better. This process will constantly
raise your return on investment (ROI).
For further details on this subject, including software and vendors,
recommend reading "Web
Measurement and Analytics" by Ashley Friedlein. This report
goes into great detail on 12 leading web analytics vendors.
About The Author:
Eric Bonnici is the Director of Internet Marketing and Development at
Alexander Joseph and Associates and has been doing business on the Internet
since 1998. To read more of Eric's past and recent
Internet Marketing Articles or his articles
Email visit his web sites today.
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