In my last post about the three most common types of organisational structures at enterprises in India today, I touched on the importance of the analytics team. Digital analytics encompasses the collection and analysis of visitor data across myriad platforms—Web, mobile, the Internet of Things, and more.
That’s a ton of business intelligence. Clients in India often ask me whether they are truly harnessing the power of digital data and how to become a successful, data-driven organisation. Here is what I tell them.
Choose A Digital Analytics Solution That Captures Data From All Devices
The first step is obviously to choose a digital analytics or clickstream solution that can capture data from any device. When selecting analytics technology, keep in mind the quality of data, future scalability, and ease of running ad-hoc analysis. Be sure to understand the clear steps to a successful digital technology investment.
Define Dimensions And Metrics
Dimensions are non-numeric values that offer a way of segmenting data—for example, from which city or browser a search originated, time variables (such as day or month), and product category. Of course, it also is important to define the dimensions specific to your business. For example, a multistore retailer may have key dimensions for apparel that include price, colour, size, sale price, cart addition, and wish-list status.
Metrics are numeric values that quantify the dimensions—for example, visits, visitors, orders, and revenue. It is important to take the time to understand what your business needs to track about its digital assets. Also, take the time to review best practices within your industry. Be sure to attain sign-off on all dimensions and metrics with your digital analytics implementation team before going live. If you don’t get this right, it’s garbage in, garbage out.
Set Operational Reports
Now the real work begins. After implementation, it is important to set up basic operational reports for different teams to help them make better data-driven decisions.
Along with traffic and conversion, the marketing team may need to measure return on investment, attribution by channels and devices, temporal comparisons, and comparisons against targets as they optimize their channel mix. Similarly, product teams will be interested in the conversion funnel to understand where visitors are dropping off; they will then need to come up with suggestions for improvements.
Identify Trends And Deviations
Basic reports typically help with identifying any deviation from the norm. But just knowing the deviations isn’t sufficient–it is important to explore the high-level reasons behind them. For example, basic conversion-funnel reports may indicate that conversion has been flat for the past six months. But looking deeper, the team might identify that conversion is particularly low for the mobile app on a specific device on the 3G network.
An analytics solution that lets you drill down through multiple dimensions is extremely useful in identifying why a certain trend has arisen. It also helps in devising a solution.
Act On Insights For Real Impact
Now it’s time to act on those newfound discoveries in order to optimise the customer experience.
For example, let’s say a company that sells travel insurance wants to measure the effectiveness of its online self-service option. A metric for this may be the percentage of unassisted conversions. That leads the company’s analytics team to explore the flip side—where call volume is high but conversion is low. That turns out to be the case for purchasing travel insurance to the Middle East. Looking deeper, the team learns that although the Middle East comprises 30% of travel insurance searches, the company has no dedicated category for travel insurance to this region. Product teams can then act on this insight to build dedicated category assets for travel to the Middle East.
Or take the case of a multicategory retailer that needs to understand the average duration to purchase by product category (electronics, apparel, and accessories). Using an analytics tool, the retailer is able to quickly pull the number of visits for conversion by category and analyse the differences among them. This insight can inform the marketing team to run differential frequency capping so as to limit the number of times for retargeting ads, while the revenue teams can use it to run targeted discounting campaigns for visitors close to conversion. Similarly, product teams can integrate this data with a personalization engine to show recommended products based on past searches.
Clearly, digital analytics are nothing but numbers unless the insights arising from them are used for real-time actions for immediate business impact. This is why it is imperative to build a data-driven culture within your organisation. Data analysis should not be not exclusive to the analytics team; it is a task for the entire business. A mature organisation will implement a cross-functional analytics team to best utilise the power of digital analytics.
Kaveri Misra will host Sneaks at Adobe Symposium 2019 India, where you can learn more about the latest marketing and advertising trends, hear from local and global brands about their digital transformation journeys, and get inspired to become an experience maker. Register now.