I have always been intrigued by new technology and how they can shape our future. If we consider the previous year, most of the world swooned over artificial intelligence, machine learning, the Internet of Things, and automation. Even though these technologies act as the catalysts for growth, I find many small business leaders concentrate most of their investments on data analytics.
The entrepreneurs today are smart, they know to avoid the common mistakes. However, small business leaders have often felt left behind by the growing acceptance of analytics, fearing that their workforce, customer base, or operations were too small to justify the cost. Although this view is short-sighted, it’s entirely understandable. Budgets are usually so tight that it’s difficult to take money from one department to pay for a new solution when ROI is not 100% predictable.
How should I use analytics?
Analytics tools are in place to provide you data about your website which can often be overwhelming. Before you start, first decide what the goal of your website is. This will help you focus on the most important data. If we consider an examples, the main goal of an online jewellery store is to make sales via website, which is different from a consultant who is using their website to give information about their business.
The online retailer would shift his/her focus on the conversion metrics such as number of purchases made online, whereas the consultant is probably going to be looking at engagement metrics, such as time spent on site and number of pages visited.
Once decided, you can set up scheduled reports to be emailed to you within a specific time frame. Regular update on the website data, will help you track the progress. If you have a business with seasonal variation, it may be worth creating year-on-year reports, allowing you to compare the current month to the same month the previous year.
Opportunity for growth
Analytics are extremely important for a number of different reasons. The main reason being, once you understand your visitors’ behavior you can optimize your website to improve results.
Going back to the example of the online jewelry seller, looking at their visitors’ path to purchase would be a great start for conversion metrics. By checking the common trend, like which page is getting highest traction, which page isn’t doing that great. You can custom the dashboard to get the best of the data you have.
Whether you know it or not, the next wave of analytics innovation will accelerate and automate some aspects of decision-making through machine learning, artificial intelligence, and block chain. Such capabilities can give small companies a ground-breaking opportunity to compete like a large enterprise with the speed and agility of a start-up. I wish to see you use Analytics to its potential and get ahead in this race.