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Post-Click Analytics Closer to Becoming Reality

A host of new applications are enabling the easier integration of web analytics into email marketing and mobile marketing campaigns.

These advances - along with a greater understanding of how to better leverage data that companies already have in house - are bringing marketers closer to the as-of-yet unrealized industry ideal of personalizing emails based on where and how long a consumer lingered on a particular site.

E-Marketing Utopia

The opportunities that "post-click" analytical capabilities could deliver are staggering, according to Direct Marketing News.  For example, if Jane Doe hovers over an image of a pair of shoes for more than ten seconds, it might mean she's interested. So the next email targeted to her could include an image of that shoe in the body of the e-mail. "This form of segmentation allows the online retailer to channel Web analytics into actionable intelligence," DM News added.

Robust post-click analytics capabilities would also enable marketers to maximize landing pages for key demographics, DM News said. "Post-click analytics can show marketers exactly how each demographic segment is interacting with a particular landing page."

New Entrants

New developments and strategies are bringing the industry closer to realizing the post-click analytics goal. At the end of October, Contactology - a provider of email marketing and online survey technologies - and web analytics firm ClickTale, partnered to deliver a new post-click analytics offering based on subscriber behavior. With the product, marketers can track web movements of opt-in email subscribers through visitors' actions on subsequent visits to a website based on collected demographic data that is "tagged" in an email campaign.

Marketers can then optimize their email campaigns and landing pages based on certain behaviors or demographic segments, measuring for example, how long men in their 40s are lingering over a certain device or product, compared with men in their 30s.

Mobile Marketing Moves Forward

Google Analytics' expansion to mobile is another step forward for the industry. Though Google will not tell you very much about who your audience is and why they are behaving a certain way, it will tell you what they do on your current site. Extending that capability to mobile could provide a huge boost to marketers targeting smartphone users.

"Brands want a mobile analytics tool to provide them deeper mobile insight than just overall device and carrier statistics for their traffic," according to the Quattro blog. "For example, a major advertiser running a campaign on our network asked why they were seeing low engagement with their site of late (i.e. people were just visiting their home page and leaving)."

The lower engagement numbers were then isolated to a particular brand of smartphone devices - another puzzle as Smartphones are typically great devices for user engagement. Further analysis showed that it was a specific, newer model with rich capabilities. "Final analysis across all of the advertisers' sites indicated that this particular model consistently performed worse than all others. The advertiser shifted the traffic away from the device and the engagement numbers returned to their normal higher levels."

CRM Data

Integration into existing customer databases will also amp up results from a post-click analytics strategy, according to Website magazine. "In other words, run your Web campaigns based on something more akin to the total expected lifetime value of a customer, rather than a guess on what a Web form or first e-commerce sale might be worth," Bill Leake, CEO of Apogee Search, wrote.

Leake offered the following tips as a starting point:

  • Start by creating custom fields in the CRM system for the information you want to capture, only measuring what matters.
  • Add hidden fields for each of these variables to all lead forms on the site. "The hidden fields will pull information about the visitor from cookies, eliminating the need for you to ask the question, how did you hear about us?"
  • Process the data by placing data captured from web analytics into the custom CRM fields. "You can then use this data to optimize paid search spend. Use it to integrate relevant keywords into your SEO efforts and … to determine the offers that your customers are most interested in, and then make sure you are offering the same thing across all channels."

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