You’ve probably heard the saying, “in real estate it’s location, location, location”.
Well, in the world of direct marketing, especially online direct-response marketing, it’s “test, test, test”. Knowing what to test, why you are testing it and how to make changes based on the data, is somewhat of an “art”, but mostly “science”. The science part means having the proper tools to know:
- Where did the visitor come from: an AdWords ad, an organic listing, another website, an email, etc.?
- Exactly what did the visitor type in the search box that caused them to see your ad?
- Are they using words like “free” or “red” when all you sell are “blue”?
- How were search queries linked to keywords?
- Did the visitor just look at the landing page and “bounce” or did they look at several pages?
- How many pages did they visit?
- How long did they spend on your website?
- Did they visit a specific page you wanted them to see?
- Did they take an action you wanted them to take?
- Are they a new visitor or have they been to your website before?
Knowing the answers to these and many other important questions is all possible by implementing web analytics. I like to refer to it as “peeking behind the curtain”. Web analytics are a very powerful tool, but it does require some additional work. It’s not a requirement, but it is very helpful when it comes to optimizing your AdWords campaigns.
And one more thing, here is another ism I like which is very appropriate. “You can’t improve what you can’t measure”.Web analytics is the tool that allows us to measure.
OK, so how do I get web analytics? It involves using your webmaster to put a few lines of Java code on each web page of your site. This code sends data on visitor behavior to a data base which can be queried to provide valuable information about how well your campaign is performing. Google Analytics is not the best web analytics application, but it is pretty good and best of all, it’s FREE.