Do you have a marketing strategy?
Do you know what’s working?
Surprisingly, I have come across many business owners that answer these two questions with a confident yes. Yet, when I dig a little deeper, I come to find they are falling short not only in their marketing strategy, but they are speculating what is working because there is no real data analysis to back it up.
The tracking, measurement, and analysis of a marketing strategy are what drives success. When there are no tracking methods in place, there is no data to provide insight into what is and what is not working, and what is really driving conversions and ultimately ROI.
Before I jump into my primary list of go-to tracking and measurement tools, you may be thinking about what exactly should be tracked. This will depend on the marketing strategies being implemented (i.e. social media, organic SEO, content marketing, etc.) and your goals. Always start with your S.M.A.R.T goals, work from there to build your strategy, and determine the best metrics to monitor.
The following list includes my go-to tracking and measurement tools, many of which are free and easy to implement.
Although in recent years, the list of alternative platforms for web analytics has increased, Google Analytics continues to take the lead when it comes to website intelligence.
Google Analytics provides essential information like:
- Who is visiting your website
- Where are website visitors coming from
- What page content is keeping their attention
- …and SO much more.
Google Analytics also integrates with other tools like Google Ads and Google Search Console for a complete overview of your web presence. One of the most important features to set up are the goals to track conversions. Goals can be contact form submissions, purchases, newsletter subscribers, or appointments scheduled. Six basic and important metrics to monitor include:
- Bounce Rate
- Exit Pages
- Conversion Rate
- Top 10 Pages
Google Search Console
Google Search Console is widely known and used by search engine optimization experts. GSC provides important data on your website and website visitor metrics. Three of the most important metrics are search traffic, search appearance, and Google Analytics. These three metric categories make it a valuable tool that business owners should be monitoring as well. It is simple to set up as it only requires verification of your domain and then adding different versions of your website including www., http:// and https://, etc.
HotJar is a great tool for monitoring and tracking visitor behavior on your website or landing pages. It helps you gather qualitative data from heatmaps, polls, surveys, and funnel tracking. I especially like their visitor recordings feature because you can see what actions a visitor is taking on your website or landing page. It is useful for finding specific areas for improvement to ultimately guide your visitors to take the action you want them to take.
You can set up a heatmap in just 30 seconds and they offer a free account – definitely, a must have!
Moz is an SEO tool with many research functions to help improve your search engine optimization (SEO). SEO improvements help you improve your online presence making it easier for potential customers to find your website. With Moz you can research relevant keywords, monitor your website against competitors, conduct a link analysis and monitor how well you are ranking on Google for specific keywords. Check out their Free SEO Tools.
Sprout Social is a social media management and monitoring tool. Their dashboard is well organized and provides connections to LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google Analytics. While Sprout Social is highly effective for scheduling and managing your social media content in one centralized dashboard, they also offer advanced analytics and performance reports.
With an analytics tool like Sprout Social, you can monitor key metrics and make informed decisions to refine your social media strategy.
I also love that it integrates with Google Analytics because this provides a full perspective on the value of social media efforts with analysis on activities like traffic and sales.
The most important metrics that should be monitored include:
- Likes and Reactions to your Posts
- Optimal Times for Engagement and Posting
- Mentions, Comments, and Replies
- Referral Traffic from Social Media
- Click Rates
- Follower Growth
Social Mention is a social media research and analysis tool that I like to use for two main purposes: brand monitoring and content topic ideas.
By searching for your own company name, you will find content or social media posts that have recently been shared with your name, the sentiment associated with your brand, and whether your reach is increasing.
Content marketing remains a top marketing strategy in today’s marketing landscape. Social Mention is a great tool for instances that you hit a content block and need insight into topics or trends you can incorporate into your content.
Offline Tracking and Measurement
While not as popular as digital marketing strategies, offline tactics like print and direct mail still apply for many businesses. Two of the top methods to track offline marketing efforts are
- Use a tool like Call Rail for tracking the call-in volume for a specific campaign. With Call Rail, you can create a unique phone number, listen to call recordings and obtain campaign analytics. Call Rail integrates with many popular platforms including Google Analytics. They also offer a dynamic number insertion feature which allows you to use a unique phone number for each source like Google Ads, Facebook, Google Organic, etc.
- The second method is using a unique URL for your print or mail campaign. This unique URL should lead visitors to a landing page where visitor behavior and conversions can be effectively tracked.
There are so many platforms for tracking and measuring marketing campaigns. The best platforms will depend on the metrics and behavior that is important to track in relation to your marketing goals.
Need help implementing or monitoring these tools? Get in touch with Denisse Marie.