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Do you feel lost in a sea of digital data and don’t know how to discern which data is useful to your business? You’re not alone, and the volume of digital marketing analytics available can make it difficult to decide which products are worth your time or money. Thankfully, you’re in luck because I'm here to help you learn what digital marketing analytics are and how you can leverage them to make data-driven decisions that achieve your unique business goals. 

What are Digital Marketing Analytics?

Digital marketing analytics evaluate how well your content is performing based on visitors’ behavior on your website. The information you receive comes in the form of actionable data so you don’t need to make any educated guesses on how best to adjust your marketing strategy. Without digital marketing analytics, you don’t have a reliable method of determining how successful your current strategies are and what you can do to improve. 

Some digital marketing analytics tools are leveraging the power of machine learning to accurately evaluate consumer behavior and make predictions. From deciding what the right pricing is for a new product to choosing the right marketing activities when promoting your brand, digital marketing analytics tools are essential for e-commerce businesses.

Digital marketing analytics can also be used to identify which demographics you cater to the most. By identifying your best customers and observing customer behavior, you can adjust your messaging to speak to them directly. You may also be able to save time and money eliminating initiatives targeted at the wrong people or which aren’t giving people the customer experience you want them to have. 

Why Are Digital Marketing Analytics Important?

Digital marketing analytics can be used to solve many problems, but there are three important reasons you need them for your own business. They allow you to understand how effective your current marketing campaigns are, to personalize your message and connect on a personal level, and get ahead of your competition by identifying trends. 

The most important reason you should invest in digital marketing analytics is that they reduce your expenses and increase your return on investment. If you abandon a campaign that’s producing poor results and produce content that draws more visitors, you’re spending your money more efficiently. Without actionable data, it’s difficult to determine which course to take. This is the primary problem analytics solve for you. 

Understanding the effectiveness of marketing campaigns

Digital marketing analytics help you determine whether your current campaigns are working or if you need to make adjustments. For example, if you’ve been advertising on social media, it helps to track where your website traffic is coming from. If you’ve been investing in Facebook advertising recently and don’t notice enough influx of traffic originating from links on Facebook, your message is either not reaching your intended audience or people aren’t responding to it how you hope. 

Your analytics can help you determine what part of your strategy needs to change. For example, if your visitors tend to navigate away from your webpage at the same step in your process, you can figure out what’s turning them away. Finally, if you’re using multiple digital marketing campaigns at the same time, you can track the progress of all the campaigns simultaneously by observing visitor interaction on your website. 

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Analyzing customer data can help with personalization

The reasons someone may visit your website or purchase products from your store often remain the same for each subsequent purchase. You can use data to predict your customers’ next moves and create content that’s personalized for them based on their transaction history, search history, interaction with your posts, or physical location. The more personalized the experience you offer, the more potential customers feel comfortable with your business and trust you. 

One way you can use data-driven marketing is to identify key demographics that visit your website and show them each advertisements or products that are personalized to their interests or purchase history. The ads will be more effective because your visitors have already displayed interest in the products before. 

Identifying trends can help with future campaigns

Businesses that can effectively identify digital trends and make the right adjustments usually gain a competitive advantage in their industries. Using digital marketing analytics can help you identify the weaknesses in your past digital marketing campaigns so that you can create more effective campaigns in the future. They can also help you become aware of emerging trends that your competitors may not be aware of yet so that you can reach potential customers first.

Examples Of Analytics And Best Use Cases

Google analytics is a popular tool, but it isn’t the only useful digital analytics program available. Businesses use many types of digital marketing analytics to measure the success of their advertising campaigns. The marketing performance tools you choose to use should complement your key performance indicators (KPIs) and your goals. For example, if your goal is to increase your reach and engagement, you should use social media analytics tools to see how people are interacting with your social media posts and advertisements. 

You may be interested in how well your money is spent across multiple advertising platforms, such as Google, social media, and email marketing. In this case, there are a different set of marketing analytics tools that could be more useful.

Reach and Engagement

Your reach and engagement is defined by how many people are viewing your content and then what your visitors do once you’ve reached them. If your marketing efforts are successful in some key metrics, but not in others, you need to determine how to adjust. 

One example is a marketing campaign on social media that exceeds your goals and receives 100,000 page views. If those pageviews aren’t converting into sales, it could be due to excellent reach and poor engagement. You need to determine why visitors aren’t interacting with your content despite increased brand awareness.

Another example is the inverse. You’re getting great feedback from people who land on your page and your click through rate and conversion ratios are excellent. However, your content isn’t being viewed by enough people. You may need to optimize your content for the correct keywords, geolocations, or demographics.

Web analytics can help you learn how well you’re connecting with your customers and improve your decision-making skills. In addition to improving your search engine optimization results, big data allows you to improve your campaign performance by retaining visitors and increasing your conversion rate.

Conversion, Revenue, and ROI

Tracking these metrics helps you understand how well your advertising budget is being put to use. You can use them to see how effective your landing pages, newsletters, and blogs are by tracking who’s visiting your site and what they searched for before arriving. You can also determine the cost of customer acquisition based on how much money you’re spending per sale.

One example is if you’re investing in an industry blog and want to see what posts result in the most subscriptions. You can analyze which topics and keywords attract the most readers and if those blogs convert into sales.

Another example is determining how much money you need to invest to receive the impact you’re looking for based on your current click-through rates and conversion rates. You can see what your current return on investment (ROI) looks like and explore ways to improve it. Do you need to spend more money on SEO or on improving the customer journey when they visit your site?

Additional Analytics To Consider

Data analytics allows you to look at problems from multiple angles, so feel free to use as many analytics tools as you feel you need. Some other data analysis metrics that provide valuable information include the following.

  • Web traffic data such as page views, bounce rate, unique visitors, length of time on your site per visit, and clicks
  • Customer retention data such as returning visitors, average cart value per sale, and new sales
  • The open rate on your emails and referral links
  • What customers have to say about your business and their user experience through complaints, reviews, and surveys
  • Which products on your website receive the most traffic and conversion to sales
  • Abandoned cart data, including how successful your strategies to convert abandoned carts into sales are
  • Marketing attribution data can let you know where in the marketing pipeline you converted a watcher to a clicker, or a clicker to a buyer
  • Predictive analytics tell you what's likely to happen in the near future so your business can prepare and respond accordingly.

Getting The Most Out Of Your Digital Marketing Analytics

Digital marketing analytics are only as effective as your implementation of them. There isn’t a cookie-cutter strategy that works for every business online. To get the most out of your analytics, you need to identify which tools produce the best results and are worth your time and monetary investment. 

Spending too much time chasing the wrong analytics can have an unintended effect on your business. This is why it’s a good idea to work with professionals who can offer guidance and advice tailored to your company goals and current marketing strategies. Marketing professionals can make sure that you’re investing in the correct marketing initiatives and are aware of the fundamentals for your specific market.

Use the right analytics tools

There are a lot of digital analytics tools available for use. It’s easy to get lost down the rabbit hole of applications in search of actionable insights you can use to improve your marketing strategy. It’s important that you choose several effective tools for your business instead of trying to collect data from too many sources. 

Identify which tools apply to your current marketing strategy and what tools could be useful when making adjustments to current trends and customer data. Focus on those tools unless you have a good reason for adding additional tools.

Understand all the marketing metrics

It’s important to understand all of the marketing metrics that determine how effective your strategies are. Here are some of those metrics.

  • Return on investment (ROI): A metric that evaluates how effective your investments are based on increased growth and revenue
  • Customer lifetime value (CLV): How much money you anticipate the average customer spends with your business during a specified period of time
  • Customer retention rate (CRR): How many of your customers conduct multiple transactions or subscribe to ongoing services
  • Customer acquisition cost (CAC): How much investment is needed to draw a visitor to your site and then convert that visitor into a sale
  • Cost per lead (CPL): Another measure to determine how effective your marketing campaigns are by assigning a cost per individual lead

These are only some of the marketing metrics you may wish to follow. You can view a more extensive list of marketing metrics here.

Optimize, optimize, optimize

Digital marketing strategies are constantly evolving and changing due to emerging consumer trends and technology. It’s important to review how well your strategies have been working lately to determine whether a course correction is needed. If you convince yourself that what worked well last year will continue to work in the years to come, you may fall behind your competition. 

Whenever you obtain new data, determine how you can use it to change and optimize your content for the greatest reach and engagement. As long as you continue to monitor your progress and optimize your advertising content, you should see continued improvement in your results. 

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By Stephanie Hood

Stephanie Hood is an experienced marketing professional and Editor of The CMO. With nearly a decade spent as Marketing Manager at Discover Holidays and Executive Editor at VIVA Lifestyle & Travel, she built her career leading editorial and marketing teams and strategies that turn six-figure budgets into seven-figure profits. She now enjoys connecting with the world's top executives to learn their secrets to business success, and shares those insights right here with her community of like-minded professionals. Curious what she’s uncovered? Be sure to sign up for The CMO newsletter.