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Analyse this: business analytics explained

Don’t be left in the dark— everyone is talking analytics and how their strategy is going to propel their start-up into the stratosphere. Business analytics doesn’t just need to be for your resident smarty-pants or the clever clogs who claim you can’t do it without them. Once you know how to make the most of your own website data, you’ll be laughing your way to the cyber bank.


What are ‘analytics’?

Without all the frills and bows, analytics is simply the process of establishing and tracking the patterns which appear in your website data. With the right tools this is easily done and boasts really huge benefits. You’ll be able to see which aspects are the most successful on your site, which of your products or services are really smashing expectations and what is lagging shamefully behind, making for truly useful data indeed.

Keywords

Keywords, keyword, keywords— the world is obsessed, and for good reason! Keywords are the magic tools that promise your business a prime spot at the top of page one on search engines. When customers search for businesses like yours, there you’ll be; front and centre, and all because you laced your website content with these brilliant keywords.

You can find the best keywords for your business by thinking about the kinds of things your customers will be searching. When you search these terms yourself, do you appear on the page, or is it your competitors’ names you see?

Once you have all your lovely keywords established, you can scatter them throughout your content. If you’re a bakery and know all your customers are looking for cupcakes, why not create a page especially for that product? You can include some delicious pictures and have then given yourself the golden opportunity to use lots of variations of your cupcake keyword: ‘carrot cake cupcake’, ‘red velvet cupcake’, ‘local cupcakes’ and so on. Far from just a jumble of meaningless words, your website content now becomes your top tool for success!

Top tip!

Keywords are great, but don’t go crazy— you can get flagged up and banned by certain search engines for ‘keyword stuffing’, or over-using keywords and phrases. Keep it simple and you’ll see results!

Customers and their shopping habits

A great benefit of using analytics is that you will be able to determine who your customer are, what they buy and when and why they buy it. Not just great for being nosey (other people’s private business is highly intriguing) you can begin to segment your customers and get an idea of how they should be approached, how to buy or make products which are going to tantalise them and when your busy and quiet periods are.

Segmenting customers into their own little groups means your marketing strategy will become much more refined (think smoking jacket, pipe and monogrammed slippers) and so much more effective. Once you know what inspires them, getting them to love your business is easy.

Site quality sussed

If you work in a shop you’ll be able to see, just by watching the behaviour of your customers, which areas of the shop floor get the most attention and which don’t. You can easily see how they move and where your best stock should go. Analytics can do this for your website in just the same way.

By looking at your website data through analytics, you can see which parts of your site receive the most clicks, and which areas don’t. Once you can see how your customers move around the site you can have a reshuffle to push your flagging products and how to guide users to where you’d like them to be.

Social media cracked

From filling your blog with keywords to using social listening to jump onto the current trending topics, you can use social media sites to give yourself a little boost, too.

If a new keyword has popped up but you don’t have time to reshuffle your whole site, why not write a blog post about the topic so you can use your selected words easily? Take a look at our post on blogging for more tips on how to be a Grandmaster blogger.

There are lots of platforms and apps which can help you analyse how your social media sites are performing. Sprout Social and Viralheat are two examples of sites which can gather all your social sites together and let you know how they’re doing, how much interaction you’ve had and what all your customers are talking about. You can also take a look at our post on social listening for more tips on how some cheeky internet spying techniques can help you find out what everyone is talking about, so you can stay current.

 

There you have it; analytics solved in under five minutes— there are loads of free and subscription-based apps and programmes which can help you collect and analyse your data; Google Analytics, Tableau Software and Piwik to name but a few. We hope you know enough now to venture off into the wide word of data analysis and get the results you’ve been looking for!

Do you use any analytics tools on your site? Share a comment in the box below if you’ve noticed a change after you started looking closely at your data.

Comments

David Brookes
02 Aug 2013 21:22
Thanks for the tips, I have never really been a fan of google analytics (found it confusing) will try what you have suggested.
TL
22 Dec 2015 10:45
Some really useful info here, thanks :)

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