If you’re one of those individuals who’s a firm believer in the old saying, “you get what you pay for,” well, here’s a heaping helping of humble pie. It’s called Google Analytics.
We all know that if you want to run any sort of business, you need a website. Your website is one of those top-of-the-funnel marketing tactics that, by providing a visitor with content that clarifies their questions, expounds on their problem, and introduces them to a potential solution, will hopefully set them on their “buyer journey” or “path to purchase.” That’s great. Thanks to your website, you have a potential customer who has learned something about your business and is now, ideally, ready to take the next step; that is, to learn more by stepping further down the funnel and engaging in a podcast or webinar, for instance, or downloading a white paper.
The not-so-great piece of the story is that not every visitor will do that. Some will. Some may, instead, simply surf a few pages and leave. Some may not even do that; they may leave right after they land on your home page. Building and maintaining a website is, dare I say it… useless, if you can’t understand what your site visitors do once they arrive and why.
For this, you need analytics. You see, your website is far more than a marketing tactic, a mere messaging machine. Sure, it informs visitors and, if built properly — taking UX, the User Experience, in mind — can do what we talked about earlier… put people on the path to purchase. But, a site can do much more, though. It can tell you things.
Google, to no surprise, is at the forefront of implementing and expanding upon the uses of technology while making it more accessible to, and manageable for, its users. And web analytics is no exception. While your visitors are learning about your business via your website, you’re learning about them via Google Analytics.
Google describes their web analytics platform as “a service that tracks and reports website traffic and gives you the free tools you need to analyze data for your business in one place, so you can make smarter decisions.” Yes, it does all that… and more.
Using Google Analytics, you can understand your site users, enabling you to better grasp the effectiveness of your marketing content. Google's unique insights and machine learning capabilities help you to make the most of your data, and connect your insights to deliver better business results. Not to mention, all of this “stuff” is FREE. Yes, FREE. There are many other web analytic tools out there that extend a trial period followed by a subscription, or a one-time charge. Others offer services with conditions, such as free for a specific number of tracked users or free for self-hosted users. With Google Analytics, you get the quality service without the hefty price tag... and without conditions or limitations.
Now, if we were talking about anybody but Google, you might be tempted to wonder just how good their analytics product is, given that it’s free. But you’re not, are you? We all know Google. They don’t make any Edsels. Their analytics product offers the same features as competing web analytic services which we really shouldn’t name, such as A—- Analytics, Mix—--, or Mat—.
What can analytics teach you?
To further assist in making your website a more effective marketing tool, Google Analytics can measure internal site searches and tell you what potential customers are looking for within your website. This can help you improve the ease with which visitors access information across all of your site pages. For example, analytics can tell you how many visitors leave your website after viewing only one page. This information is incredibly valuable in that it can demonstrate a need for refining your navigation or homepage design, which can then increase your site's ease of use and performance.
The Audience section of Google Analytics provides insights into visitor traits and behaviors. It can tell you the age, gender, interests, devices, and location of those who accessed your website. Understanding your audience is critical for a host of reasons, not the least of which is knowing which social media platforms to target. Knowing which platforms are driving visitors to your site can assist you in optimizing the dollars you spend on social media marketing, as well as the type of content you create for your customers. Creating the right kind of content can be just the catalyst you need to increase traffic to your website and raise your rankings in SERPS (Search Engine Results Pages). An understanding of what content on your website is gaining the most views and shares is critical to the development of future content in order to ensure that it is topical, relevant, and motivating to your customers.
Google Analytics automatically collects data for you, saving you valuable time; no more inputting data into spreadsheets or documents and moving them back and forth. You can then download your data into one of the many report templates they offer, or your very own customized report template with the dimensions and metrics you’d like to see. Like other Google services, Google Analytics can also be streamlined to be accessible via multiple devices, including your laptop, desktop computer, tablet, or phone. It can also communicate with other Google apps seamlessly, like Google AdWords, to provide you with actionable insights and increase the success of your AdWords Campaigns.
Lastly, Google Analytics can help you see how your business is growing and expanding based on how customers visiting your website are meeting predetermined goals such as making a purchase, requesting a quote, or subscribing to a newsletter. You can also assign a number of goals that will help you to track the customer’s journey through your website based on their actions. For example, if your goal is for customers to make a purchase and sign up for your monthly newsletter, you may include this in your analytics report to see where you can address any deficits that may exist.
In short, you can't beat the value of Google Analytics as a tool that can help you maintain a more effective web presence AND build your business. And you certainly can't beat the price.
As always, I would love to hear your thoughts on this subject.
About Bank Marketing Center
Here at BankMarketingCenter.com, our goal is to help you with that vital, topical, and compelling communication with customers; messaging developed by banking industry marketing professionals, well trained in the development of effective marketing communication, that will help you build trust, relationships, and revenue. And with them, your brand. Like the below “Fraudulent Activity” ads, for instance, recently added to our library of content.
To view our marketing creative, both print and digital – ranging from product and brand ads to social media and in branch signage – visit bankmarketingcenter.com. You can also contact me directly by phone at 678-528-6688 or via email at email@example.com. #bankmarketing #communitybankmarketing #websiteanalytics #googleanalytics