Let’s look at some of the essential data points that you should understand about your customers’ online journey.
At a minimum, you should first be certain that Google Analytics is installed on your website. Google Analytics is a free piece of code that Google provides to any business with a website. The piece of code needs to be added to every page on your site. Once Google Analytics is installed, you will have access to data about every customer who visits your site. A few of the major website visitor data points that you will now be able to track include city of origin, time on site and number of pages visited. You can even see where the clicks into your website originated – if the user came from a Google search, Facebook marketing campaign, Twitter marketing campaign, Yelp, etc.
One of the most powerful pieces of data out there is often overlooked but can be found using the free Google Trends tool. The Google Trends tool allows you to see the search trends by location for your specific industry. You can also see the popularity of each search term based on a 0-100 scale.
A recent example that illustrates the value behind this free data service is that it allowed marketers and business owners to see a rise in short keyword phrases versus longer keyword phrases caused by the increase in mobile search volume.
The Google Trends tool and Google Search Console also gave marketers a heads up an increase in searches phrased as questions. This rise happened because people are now using services such as Siri to help answer their questions with online searches. It turns out, when a user interacts with an automated personal assistant like Apple’s Siri, they’re more likely to phrase searches in a question format.
Using this information, business owners and marketers can now create website pages optimized for question-based searches.
Another essential piece of data can be found using Facebook’s Insight data for business owners. Facebook’s Insight data will let you know the demographics of your business page’s audience including age, city, gender and language. You can use this information to determine what your next Facebook post or Facebook ad will look like. Then you can use Facebook’s robust advertising platform and data targeting tools to reach your key audiences.
If you have access to your Yelp Business Owners account for your Yelp business page, then you have access to some very valuable information about the people who visit your page. Yelp will often provide you with the age and city of origin for users who click on your phone number within your page, get directions from your Yelp page or leave a review for your business.
The Twitter Analytics platform has come a long way in the past year. If you have an existing Twitter account, then you can analyze your followers’ interests, gender, age and location. One of the most valuable metrics on Twitter is the audience interest metric. For example, If you know that a large majority of your restaurant’s Twitter audience is interested in sports, you can use this information to cater your future posts to this audience with offers like ‘1/2 Off Appetizers During Games’ and other sports-themed posts.
Twitter Analytics will also show you how much engagement you got per Tweet. Using this data you’ll be able to spot trends in the reception of your Twitter content. For example, we recently noticed a 23% higher engagement rate for Tweets where we included a trending hash tag versus tweets where we did not include a trending hash tag.
The above examples cover just a few of the many millions of data points available to you about your customers and their online journey. However, if you can start by mastering the basics of customer data, then you will already be outpacing most of your competitors. The next time you need to make a marketing decision take a minute to research the data behind it. It will pay off many times over and you will have peace of mind in knowing that your decision is backed by proven data.
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