Take the first 45 minutes of class to complete Part 5 of the Product Roadmap with your group (from last week).

Then we will take 15 minutes to share out.

Analytics and Measures

Marketers have access to a continuous stream of data. How do they make sense of it? How do they turn it into something that is useful? How can they help business managers make decisions for the future?

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

We can measure every action that a user makes on a website. We can record data about their browser, location, language, and where they clicked to get to our site. We can observe a user’s path through the website, how much time they spend there, and whether they converted.

One of the most important things a business can do is create goals for itself. The data we collect from user interaction on a website will help us determine whether we met those goals.

A business needs to know things like:

  • where is our website traffic coming from?
  • how much has online revenue increased?
  • how many users are converting?
  • what is each conversion costing us?
  • how many people are engaging with us on social media?
  • how many people are opening our emails?
  • how many people are clicking through a landing page?
  • what percentage of users are abandoning their carts prior to purchase?
  • what is our page rank on Google for this key phrase?

To align the data they collect with their marketing goals, businesses can define key performance indicators (KPIs).

KPIs include:

  • Increase traffic volume
  • Conversion rate
  • Click-through rate
  • Return on investment
  • Cost per click
  • Cost per action or acquisition
  • Cost of generating sales offline
  • Total number of online sales
  • Overall revenue increase
  • Return on ad-spend
  • Rank of link on search engine
  • Boss satisfaction
  • Brand impact

KPIs are usually simplified as charts and graphs.

KPI End Action pie chart from Klipfolio

KPI End Action pie chart from Klipfolio


The most useful way to study our KPIs is to view them as a collection on a single dashboard. This collection of charts and graphs is called a dashboard. Much like the dashboard of a car, it lets us observe a lot of data in a quick series of snapshots (dials), all in one place.

The best dashboards display ten or fewer KPI measures. The best marketers decide which KPIs are best to focus on.

Google Analytics dashboard: acquisition overview

Google Analytics dashboard: Acquisition Overview

Social Capital

One new measure that some marketers look at is social capital. This refers to the degree to which a person or organization has power in a social group. In the online world, this means how much influence you have on others via social networks. Influence means the ability to drive the actions of others.

Some online social capital measures include:

  • how many people like or comment on your content?
  • how many people share your content?
  • how do people rate your business online?
  • how fast does your content get spread?
  • how many people convert as a result of your content?

A handful of services have stepped forward in recent years, to offer a score system for social capital. Klout was the first tool to attempt to offer a singular score.

Klout gives each individual or business a score of 0 to 100, with 100 being the most influential. It bases your score one your activity across eight different social networks. These networks include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, and LinkedIn.

Here’s my Klout dashboard. As you can see, the scores changes daily depending on your level of influence and engagement with others:

Klout dashboard for Dawn Pedersen November 2014

Klout dashboard for Dawn Pedersen – November 2014

Hootsuite provides metrics in a more detailed way, without summing it up in a single score. It is a social media measuring system. It also provides data across several social networks. Here is a report/dashboard for one of my Facebook pages:

Hootsuite report for a Facebook page

Hootsuite report for a Facebook page

While each social network provides similar data, this system allows you to view it all in one place. That saves businesses a lot of time.

Marketing Automation Software

Marketing automation software like Act-On automates many common marketing efforts. It also provides dashboards that allow marketers to measure KPI success.

Video: Make Marketing Easy with Act-On! (Software Demo) [4:54]

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software

Customer relationship management (CRM) software helps marketing people manage relationships with customers. The best-known CRM is Salesforce. It also provides useful data.

Video: What is Salesforce CRM? [4:10]

Split Testing, A.K.A. A/B Testing

Split testing is testing two or more variables on a web page, to determine which gets the most conversions. Variables refer to things such as:

  • the color and/or structure of your headline
  • the images you use
  • the price of your offer
  • the color of your call-to-action
  • the text in each body paragraph
  • the video you use

By split testing you can get the exact data on what people like better on your website. You can measure which versions get the best conversion rates, and by what percentage.

You can use Google Analytics Experiments, or premium services such as Optimizely, to help set up a split test and analyze the resulting data.

Google Analytics > Behavior > Experiments

Google Analytics > Behavior > Experiments

Video: Create Better Websites: Introducing Content Experiments [2:42]

Video: Introduction to Optimizely [3:49]

Developing KPIs/Performance Metrics

We can collect KPIs in a number of ways, such as:

  • raw numbers
  • degree of completion for a goal
  • percentage increase or decrease

The data can come from many sources, such as:

  • CRM software
  • Marketing software
  • Google Analytics
  • Project managers
  • Profit and loss/financial statements

We can look at aggregated data at differing frequencies:

  • hourly
  • daily
  • weekly
  • monthly

It is important to look at this data frequently. A year is far too long to wait to adjust a marketing strategy.

Developing KPIs/Performance Metrics

Developing KPIs/Performance Metrics

Website Analytics

Today we’ll wander around in Google Analytics. Let’s see how powerful this tool is for mining data about your site’s activity.

Google Analytics Login

I’ve set up a special Google account where you can view analytical data about the traffic on a few of my sites.

User: studentmm4413
Pass: artinstitute

Exploring Various Data Displays

Below are the data displays I regularly visit. As you review these live on the Google Analytics site, ask yourself: why would I care what this data shows me about my websites?


Google Analytics and Measures: Home Page


Google Analytics and Measures: expand window


Google Analytics and Measures: audience and overview


Google Analytics and Measures: audience and language


Google Analytics and Measures: audience and location


Google Analytics: audience and behavior


Google Analytics: audience and browser


Google Analytics: mobile overview


Google Analytics: audience and user flow


Google Analytics: aquisition


Google Analytics: all referrals


Google Analytics: organic keywords


Google Analytics: search engine queries


Google Analytics: search engine optimization


Google Analytics: site content


Google Analytics: site speed


Google Analytics: speed suggestions

More In-Depth Topics

Making Analytics Actionable

To make data actionable means to understand it, and to make decisions (actions) based on it.

1. Leverage Benchmarks and Goals

It is important to have goals for your website’s performance. That way you can see if you’re getting where you want to go.

Benchmarking is the process of comparing one’s business metrics to industry best practices.

Goals and benchmarks provide context for the data we collect. Trends across a period of time provide context as well.

2. Create High-impact Executive Dashboards

Senior management needs a highly-tuned dashboard to view the data. This would be separate from the marketing team’s dashboard.

An executive dashboard is tailored not to the marketing team, but to the top decision-makers. It should be aligned to the corporate goals.

Top management needs to be able to see what the numbers represent for the health of the company. They can begin new actions that attempt to turn ebb-and-flow into consistent progress.

3. Use Best Practices

Some best practices for responding to data are:

  • Drop measures that aren’t working, and add new ones on an ongoing basis.
  • One metric, one owner: make each KPI somebody’s job. If it isn’t performing, they need to explain why. Then they need to figure out how to improve it.
  • Make the dashboards a way of life for everyday decision-making.
  • Measure the effectiveness of the dashboards. Make sure that the voice of the consumer is heard. It shouldn’t require a mathematician to understand the data.