Customer preferences and behaviors are changing. While businesses have limited power to control these changes, Google Analytics is a world-class tool for in-depth analytics without any cost to users.
With Google Analytics, you can identify page popularity, the time users spent on your site, entrances, conversions, bounce rate, exit rate, users' geographical locations, device use (mobile, tablet or desktop), landing pages and behavior flow. Most likely, you wouldn't be able to generate such deep data on your own. And if you're not familiar with your data, you don't know for sure whether your actions are in the best interest of your business.
If you're unfamiliar with Google Analytics, there are ways to learn for free. You can read tutorial articles on Google Analytics for ecommerce businesses or complete the online certification program Google provides.
Now let's discuss how you can use Google Analytics for generating new leads. The main idea is to use the information it provides to optimize your lead generation efforts. When the metrics you use and the values you include provide an in-depth view, you can make better marketing decisions. Here are the steps.
1. Be clear on your definition of strong leads.
Before setting your Google Analytics goals, be clear on what you wish the business to achieve. Since every business has different marketing objectives, you need to be clear on what constitutes strong leads and what to track.
2. Determine goals.
Determine the goals of strong leads, to be achieved within a specific timeframe. For instance, "strong leads" could be the number of newsletter subscribers, free downloads for more information, or communications sent via the contact form.
Make sure you can measure the goals with certain actions and through trackable sources, such as organic search, referral or paid search. Set the goals with Goal Setup > Goal Description > Goal Details > Value On > type value.
3. Determine values.
If you use paid Google AdWords searches, attach a dollar value per lead generated. A value is whatever you expect a lead would generate if it converts into a buying customer. You can use the average purchase value each customer spends on your store.
4. Retarget organic visitors.
Organic visitors are those who come to your site organically through search engines, like Google and Bing. This doesn't include paid search ads. In Google Analytics, they're labeled as "unknown" or "SSL."
The key to increasing organic visitors is strong SEO articles with inbound strategies and upgraded page ranks. Since only 2 percent of web traffic actually converts on the first visit, retargeting can reduce your bounce rate by offering something of value to visitors.
5. Track lead sources.
Set up lead generation tracking codes on your website, or use a plugin to simplify the process. To better track the source of traffic, create custom URLs for each campaign with UTM parameters.
5. Analyze the goal value data.
Find your actual ROI by checking your Google AdWords spending. Next, you can click Advertising > AdWords > Keywords to find ROI and Revenue per Click to see the data. What you put as the value per customer is used to compute this section.
Now that you've received all the data about visitor locations, preferences and behaviors, analyzed the goal value data, and found the actual ROI, it's time to decide on the next steps.
6. Understand the big picture.
It may take a while to get the big picture of your site's visitors – their locations, preferences and behaviors. Analyze them in comparison with your goals. Any interesting findings? Any surprises? For instance, you might be surprised at how many visitors use mobile gadgets, or at the blog article that attracts the most organic traffic. Take note of them, as you might need the information to create new strategies.
7. Customize content and experiences.
Once you understand the big picture, you can start customizing content to attract more organic traffic, because it's the most cost-efficient way to generate new leads. Consider customizing experiences as well. For instance, give visitors from non-English-speaking countries the option to read the content in their language. Also, retargeting is powerful to reduce bounce and exit rates.
8. Monitor referral traffic.
It should go without saying, but continue to monitor your traffic and pay close attention to referral traffic, which shows what content works and what doesn't. Make changes to new content and do A/B tests. Experiment to find types of content that would result in more leads.
9. Analyze and conclude.
Be familiar with all of Google Analytics' features. Create visual graphs and charts to get a better big picture of the data provided. Analyze them one by one until you understand what happened behind the data. Make the conclusions in a narrative format so your team can better understand the stories behind the data.
10. Tweak and repeat the process.
Repeat the process over time. Use the advanced features and different values, combining them with the new content strategies to see and compare the differences.
Your site is an important tool for lead generation. Thus, it's critical to monitor the performance of your marketing activities with data. Remember, today's business must rely on data to ensure that you act in the best interest of your company and that every investment provides a positive return. Google Analytics can provide the necessary data for your business, including the data to generate more leads.