1. Google Analytics (Free)
I would hope that most have heard and used GA but whether or not you understand the huge amount of info, how to analyse it and the quality of its data.
Before you get started analysing the data make sure what you are looking at is useful. If you can do the following easy tasks, it will make your analytics far more effective:
There will be a large chunk of your website users that won’t be genuine visitors, you need to remove as much of them as possible from your figures to give you more realistic data. If you go to the admin section of your GA account you will see a tab for filters, here you will be able to add various types of filters. Here’s a guide if you need but here are few ideas about what to filter out:
Certain IP address e.g. your own office
Certain countries if there is now way of you doing business there
Spam referral websites
You will get a good idea of the filters needed by browsing through your acquisition section of your GA.Goals
What is it that you want to get people to do on your site exactly? Is it to buy, book, enquire or download? There may be several goals and because of this you need to set them up as goals in GA, this way you can see the actual conversion rate of your site rather than guessing it.
This is pretty straight forward, all you need is the URL of the page people land on once they have completed your goal (Thank you page). Once you have this, you can quickly set them up using this guide.
Once you have clean data and the essential goals set up, there are essential figures you need to look at to see whether or not there is an issue to be looked at:
Compare – It’s no good looking at results over one period of time, use the compare function where you select the dates to view. This way you can compare the same period from year to year as there may be seasonal issues and comparing December with January is irrelevant for many stats.Google Analytics Comparison
Number of users – I don’t believe I need to explain the importance of this stat but if everything remains the same, you would see a correlation between this and the number of goals converted.
Bounce rate (Desktop, Mobile and Tablet) – Simply the higher the bounce rate, the more of an issue it is. Inevitably, you will always get a bounce rate. Sometime you may improve your site but increase your bounce rate. I know this is confusing, but if you decide to add your phone number to all pages rather than just the contact page (good thing), people may leave the site quickly after visiting just one page because they found your number (good thing) but added to your bounce rate (bad).
Therefore the bounce rate is usually seen as the rate of people being turned off by the design, usability or content of your site. The design and usability may vary from device to device due to the responsive nature of websites now. This is why you need to check the bounce rate on each device.
Source Traffic – The image below shows a top level view of the various sources feeding traffic through to your site and the various KPI’s for each e.g. users, bounce rate and conversion. Here you may find the reason why your traffic users have reduced e.g. your organic traffic has dropped (therefore look at your SEO). You may see the conversion rate is very low for paid traffic, which is lowering the overall conversion rate of your site and wasting your money.
Google Analytics Sources
There is so much more to delve into, but these are the essentials.
2. Hotjar (from $89 pm)
Now that you have seen that there may be an issue on one of your pages, due to a high bounce or exit rate in GA, what can you do about it if the page seems ok to you?
Hotjar is a system that helps you understand your websites user behaviour through a number of tools:
The heatmaps highlight the most popular clicks, movements and where people scroll to on the page by using a colour chart as shown below. This may highlight that your key information may not be in the right area to be clicked on or not designed well enough for it to stand out. This also shows you what people may be interested in and that you should pay more attention to those pieces of content and ensure there are ways to convert people.
Rather than use a mix of all users behaviour you can remove the guesswork by recording actual sessions and show the actual movement of someones mouse. From my own experience I analysed this for a clients eCommerce site and realised that some customers found the selection of sizes, before adding it to the cart, stumping. You could see this, because you could see them add to cart but the site would show an error telling them to select. The fact that they had to select one size and then the other wasn’t clear enough.
When you have a number of steps in a conversion process, such as Product page > cart > payment, this tool will show you which step has the biggest drop off and highlight the area you need to improve.
If a simple form is your website goal, how do you improve the completion rates? The form analysis will show you, which fields take too long to ﬁll, which are left blank, and give inside information as to why people may not complete your forms.
All the tools so far still require a little bit of educated guess work rather than getting real feedback from the user. These polls can be tailored and created for specific pages and pop up at specific times e.g. when someone doesn’t complete it. A simple multiple choice poll will give some real qualitative data to work on.
You may want to know more about your users such as: what were they looking for? What type of business do you work for etc. If you find that a lot of users are coming from certain types of businesses, maybe you should create a page devoted to that type of business or maybe a case study similar to that business. This survey will appear when the user is about to leave the site and you can tempt them by offering a prize.
I would suggest that some of these will only be useful for the more complex sites such as recruitment, booking or buying online, you shouldn’t have to go to these lengths if you have a 20 page solicitors website with just two call to actions (contact us and download).
3. Webleads (From $29pm)
Unfortunately, you might have the most perfect site in the world but most people coming to your site won’t be in the position to give up their details or purchase e.g. they just might not have the money to spend there and then, they are just researching. Wouldn’t it be great to be able to see who exactly is coming to your site, so you may be able to follow up in other ways?
I should make it clear that this tool is really only useful for B2B businesses, as the data will only show company information due to their static IP address. The data it can provide are:
Webleads Lead Generation tool
It will show when they visited so if you look at the data regularly, you can follow up quickly to increase your chances of converting this lukewarm lead. There are various ways in which you can follow up:
Find the most appropriate person via LinkedIn and connect. You can also then call the business and ask for that person and explain you know someone from their business has visited your site and wondered if you could help at all.
This can spook some people out, but at the same time deep down really impress them!
Ok, so these are 3 tools I know that work and can really make a difference, if you are investing time and money on your online marketing, make sure you are getting the most out of it.