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Unformatted text preview: Website analysis to meet customer needs Knowing where your website visitors come from and what they do once they get to your site can help you shape your website to your customers' needs, and not vice-versa. Kate Horstead finds out about web analytics and how they can help you meet your online objectives Many nice-looking and expensive websites fail; many cheap but simple ones succeed. Why? Because they enable their visitors to meet the purpose of their visit without fuss. "Most firms' websites fail to perform because they ignore their business objectives when creating a web strategy or don't measure how well their online marketing performs against their targets," says Peter Hawtin, founder of web marketing agency Brand New Way. Whatever the business objective of your website, website analysis software will show you how effectively you are meeting it. It will reveal which marketing channels are working and which are not; which parts of your site are popular and which pages your visitors avoid. Armed with this information, you can create a marketing strategy and a website that really works for you – and it does not have to cost. "For most small firms the free tools such as Google Analytics or Clicky are sufficient," Hawtin points out. Trace your visitors Visitors will typically find you via links on other sites, pay-per-click advertising, emails or search engines. If you have paid for search engine optimisation but nobody is coming via this route, you will know you need to invest in improvements. Likewise, monitoring will also tell you which marketing channels you should simply abandon. "Small businesses often don't have the resources to do all types of online marketing, so they need to see where their investment is most worthwhile, and direct their resources there," explains Hawtin. As well as telling you which channels visitors have used to find you, website analysis tools can also tell you their geographical location. If you are targeting customers in particular regions, this can tell you how successfully you are doing it; alternatively, it can alert you to opportunities in places you had not previously thought of. Monitor how visitors use your site The way visitors use your website speaks volumes about the quality of its content and how easy it is to navigate. Analysing this will help you to develop the site and improve your ability to meet your objectives. – your user 'conversion rate'. "Find out what proportion of people coming to your website do what you want them to do and convert to your desired objective," says Hawtin. If conversion is low, look at how much time visitors spend on particular pages, think about the steps they need to take to complete their journey and identify any obstacles to that. Vistors may, for example, click away from stale or impractical content too quickly – or stay too long on pages that they should pass through quickly; it is not all about keeping visitors on your site for ages....
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This note was uploaded on 05/22/2010 for the course ALL MBA taught by Professor All during the Spring '10 term at Jones Intl..
- Spring '10