Effective Marketing Ideas Using Your Analytical Reports
By Cindy Woudenberg Founder, LuCorp Marketing | September 09, 2012
If your hotel's website has integrated analytics and the data is confusing, join the club! A majority of businesses say web analytics is poorly understood and that it is difficult to comprehend what the data measures. In addition, many businesses do not or cannot measure their marketing ROI.
Generating leads and driving traffic to the website are two of the biggest goals of a website. In addition, measuring customer satisfaction and enhancing brand awareness are also key goals of a website. Analytics can be a key to measurable ROI if understood and implemented correctly into marketing plans and assessments. With analytics, assessments can be made on visitors, where they come from, how much time they spend on the website, how visitors utilize the site, sales interactions, how your marketing programs are doing, where people find your website, what they look at within your site, and so on.
Whether it's to book rooms, to announce a special or event, to provide visitor information, or to highlight a restaurant, a website should serve a purpose. Does the website make the purpose clear? Is the website easy to navigate and clearly describe your services and offerings? Can the user easily get to the information they are looking for? Is the site doing what it should be doing – enhancing sales and showcasing your brand? Is the site accomplishing the goals you set? Through the use of analytics you can measure all of these issues and develop a plan to pinpoint which areas need improvement.
Website Analytics should be looked at as a tool to assess customer interaction with your site and assess goals for marketing. Missing the all important usability of the site for the visitor will diminish returns, and defining goals can often be difficult. With the use of analytics, assessing the usability of your site for the visitor becomes much easier. Utilizing the data collected by analytics, goals can be set that are measurable, quantifiable, achievable, detailed and timely. The market intelligence you gather from analytics acts as a map that can enhance your competitive advantage.
There are several components of analytics that can be analyzed and used for goal setting. Traffic simply refers to the "hits" your website receives in the form of visitors. For example, Google Analytics provides a Traffic Source Report which provides an overview of the different sources that send traffic to your website, with graphics on traffic trends. You can determine which visitors typed your site URL directly into their browser, which were referred from another site, and which came to your site through a search engine. A high number of direct visitors might indicate that your outside advertising (which contains your website URL) is effective. Your search engine data may indicate that your SEO keywords should be changed based on how much traffic is coming in from the search engines.
Analysis of click through rates can improve search performance and help understand user behavior. Data is collected on the "clicks" users make, revealing which pages are viewed and in what order. Bounce rates indicate the percentage of visitors who only visit your entrance or landing page and don't go any further into your site. A high bounce rate can indicate that your landing page isn't compelling or relevant. Using keywords consistently throughout your advertising, social media and on your home page, as well as providing relevant information on your home page can help reduce bounce rates and entice visitors to explore further on your site.