Collecting digital marketing data is magnificent. And, we are storing exceptional amounts of structured and unstructured data from ERPs, CRMs,WCMs, Web Analytics, Social Media, Apps, Sensors, etc. I'm a big believer that all of this data can provide us with insights – IF we focus on the right metrics. But many CxOs make decisions based on metrics that have no tie to business objectives.
This problem can be easily addressed by starting with a solid measurement plan for the initiative, which should include the business objective and tactics that will determine the metrics that should be used to measure success. Forget about torturing yourself with Google Analytics, or Adobe Analytics at this point. Just focus on figuring out the right metrics first.
Here is framework that can be used towards any web data analysis:
Metrics should exist for a good reason. KPIs must provide insights that connect to the business objective. If you have a website that drives revenue through travel bookings, metrics on how many people visit and how often they return, the number of trips sold, and the average dollar value per trip booked, would be metrics that matter. Additionally, metric definitions should align across business units – the number of trips sold should be measured the same way in marketing and accounting, for example.
Metrics should focus on Macro and Micro conversions. Marketers should take a look at the sections of a website or landing page that drive value; these will help you understand which metrics should be analyzed. For example, a traveler visiting a city for the first time, might focus on the attractions section. The more prospects are aware of how much the city has to offer, the more likely they are to book a trip. Perhaps this section contains "Newsletter Sign-Up, or Download Travel Brochure" CTAs – these are micro conversions worth measuring. Macro conversions are simple to identify. Create Travel Itinerary, Book Now, etc.
You should create a list of things that contribute to conversions, to focus on relevant metrics.
How actionable/insightful are the metrics? Seeing that the number of Facebook likes for your brand has gone up or down by 100 indicates changes. But,it doesn't tell you anything about your Facebook strategy. Metrics need to reveal insights into the tactics. For example, the amplification rate of your posts can show if your strategy is connecting with your prospects.
This framework can help you identify the digital marketing metrics that matter based on your business objectives.
It is our duty as Digital Marketers to understand what the business is trying to achieve before jumping into metrics, so we can build measurement plans that provide actionable insights.