Staff Writer: Carolyn Johnson
Web analysts at local search engine optimization services often come across tons of raw data, yet what really matters is how to turn this data into something useful for your marketing efforts. Sometimes analysts will turn to social media, peer discussion groups and other analysts to determine what data can become meaningful and what can be tossed.
In reality, however, web analytics must be mastered over time and doesn’t come with a magic formula. Instead, analytics requires that you know how to segment your website’s visitors. Knowing how to properly segment your visitors will allow you to bring value to your business by knowing and sharing your business story. You can create valuable information out of the raw data you have with several tips.
Segment your website visitors into type of visitor. Various types of visitor include new visitors, prospective leads, loyal customers, employees and affiliates. Take into account the fact that different types of visitors will behave differently on your website. If employees often visit your website, they may alter your rate of conversion.
Traffic source type should also be segmented. Different types of traffic include paid search versus organic search, affiliates, earned social media traffic versus paid, PPC, and others. Segmenting this way may require some additional tagging, especially for earned social media traffic versus owned social media traffic, as well as paid search versus organic search.
It’s important to closely inspected direct traffic, as poor tagging may lead to some unwarranted credit. Tag any possible source with query string parameters, including email, QR codes, social media content and redirects. This allows for better segmentation of direct traffic.
Categorizing your content by intention will help ease the segmenting process. Whether the intention of the content is for research, transactions, renewals, or recommendations, target the intention of specific pieces of content for your analytics reports. This way, you’ll be able to optimize the user experience by taking users through a common-sense sales process that’s retro-fitted for a specific type of user.
When segmenting, a competent web analyst will be able to predict trends based on the hypotheses formed a derived by the data. It’s a good idea, then, to log these estimations and back them up by accurate figures and information. This will make analysis that much easier in the long run.
Ask yourself what drives your business. If your business is aggressively focused on acquiring a product, for instance, segment your data and compile your findings based on that goal. If your clients, on the other hand, want to hear more about customer behavior, include that in the report as well. Aligning your segments with whatever drives your business requires careful detail, which your clients will certainly appreciate.
These tips may take time to master, and you may even need the assistance of a more experienced analyst to share segmenting techniques. Keeping in mind how important it to segment in different ways, however, will assist you in driving value to your business.