Moving to Real Web Intelligence

Copying over content from an old blog I wrote, it’s out of date, so don’t be alarmed 🙂

So, as time goes by I’ve found myself drawn to web analytics. I’ve worked with WebTrends, Omniture, Google Analytics and more.

What I’ve quickly realized is that while good SEO is important, driving visitors to your site will only accomplish one thing, more visitors to your site.

What’s really important is what they do when they get there. Are they the right people? If your website sells snow shovels, attracting a lot of Australian visitors to your website due to some great SEO work is probably not the most effective use of your time.

Web Analytics will allow you to identify that many of the visitors to your site are coming from Australia, and then leaving without buying a single shovel. Darn them! Your site stats show lots of visitors, but a high bounce rate and no additional sales conversions.

I, as a professional, am now moving beyond Web Analytics to Web Intelligence. This is the theory of combining web analytics (what’s happening on your website), voice of customer and customer experience management data (why and how), along with business intelligence data (really well defined who).

The “who” factor is critical for sophisticated marketing efforts. If you find that snow shovels actually sell very well to Australian who are 19-25 and have an interest in snow boarding, you can target marketing spend in a much more effective way by using media and message that speaks directly to them.

Web Intelligence, in theory, can link your web analytics to your other sources of data for far deeper insight into who your potential customers are and what they want.

It’s not easy, but it’s not impossible. It will require the work of web analysts, BI, IT and business stakeholders to make it work. Yes it will also likely require alterations to, or a brand new data warehouse that’s linked to your web analytics and your CRM or ERP.

The marketing power you’ll obtain will be well worth it though.

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