Running a business is hard. There’s a constant need to generate ever-increasing amounts of revenue, intense competition makes it hard to capture the public’s attention, and customers expect a tailored experience on every platform – including those you haven’t even heard of yet. Recent research from eMarketer shows that business owners are making significant investments in improving their digital presence: 46.6% were investing in creating a seamless customer experience across all social, mobile, web and ecommerce efforts.
At some point, we’ve got to talk about the money. Everyone has a budget they’ve got to work with. Before investing in digital marketing tools, it’s a good idea to know exactly what you need, what you’re trying to accomplish, and how you’re going to measure the effectiveness of any new tools and strategies you use.
Understanding the Role of Digital Audits
We talk regularly about digital audits, and perform them for all clients as part of our on boarding process. A comprehensive digital audit will consider every aspect of your online presence, looking at both public facing content and the behind the scenes configuration of your website, social media and more. An audit provides a baseline read of your digital presence as it is right now; to measure the effectiveness of marketing efforts from this point further, there’s one place to look: your website analytics.
Most websites – including eCommerce sites – have Google Analytics installed. During the Data Divide webinar, we explained how making use of the information Google Analytics captures can be used to provide a meaningful competitive advantage. (If you missed the webinar, you can download the slides here.)
One way website data helps business owners and provides a reliable way to assess the effectiveness of marketing efforts. For example, if you want to know if your social media advertising is working, examining your Google analytics reports will reveal if users came to your site from social media, and what actions they took once they arrived. Did they browse several pages of merchandise or quickly claim your special offer and depart? Understanding the customer journey to and through your website is vitally important. This knowledge will help you choose digital marketing tools more strategically, which means expanding your reach while controlling costs. Tools that aren’t performing as you’d hoped can be phased out in favor of those tools and strategies that suit your unique business better. That’s how growth happens.