Measurement without Action

Your back just got punched, twice!

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Measurement without action 

We talk to a lot of people who rightly really want to know some of the “vital stats” of their site. They regularly want to be updated on the numbers, things like total visitors, and number of pages viewed, maybe even the bounce rate. There is a concern this might be just a box ticking exercise - maybe the numbers just have to be fed back into a report that no one looks at, maybe they get relayed on verbally at a meeting with no context. Basically this is measurement for measurements sake, but there is little point in shuffling these numbers around if the customer experience doesn’t change, or they aren’t (or can’t be) used to drive progress on real goals. While measurement is vitally important to understand where to improve and how things are tracking measurement is meaningless without insight, action and an overall strategy.

One example of numbers for numbers sake is the Harvey Norman Facebook page, which has over half a million followers after a series of promotions and give-aways encouraging people to like the page. The strategy appears to have ended at gaining followers however - the typical weekly posts have under 100 engagements each, which means about 0.02% of the audience is engaged. Does this translate into customers in the door? Does it represent a solid stream of sales? Knowing you have an audience of 200 sounds alright, but not if your audience should be 2000. It’s also no use if they are in the room but not listening. 

When we examine user behaviour we use a variety of tools and techniques to try to better understand what is working and what isn’t. This might be examining how a user flows through from first seeing a piece of content on social media, through to a website, through to digging deeper into their product category and finally to buying intention. By looking at which parts of that journey are guiding users to the next, and which aren’t, we know where to focus effort on refining it. If we know users are dropping out at the point where we are asking them to fill in a form, we can look at streamlining the form. If users are not digging into a product category, we want to make sure the product categories are well described and appealing on the home page. We’d also want to look at how we are fulfilling users expectations for the various search terms they are using to reach the site by comparing the way different search intentions correlate with different browsing behaviour.

It’s important to understand what can be measured, what can’t, and what this can tell you. One set of numbers can sometimes support more than one hypothesis around customer experience and behaviour. Generally the numbers can show an abnormality that deserves further attention, but it takes some investigation to understand what a customer is seeing, put yourself into the customers journey and realise how the experience they are being provided facilitates it. It’s good to have a plan around how your digital assets fit into your marketing strategy. Whether it’s a sales tool, lead generator or brand awareness and support tool. This should set expectations around audience and traffic levels. But it’s still important to allocate time to understanding what sits between the numbers, the important stuff that can’t be measured.

If you have a full time web team, there will likely be a key member with a laser focus on the finer details of User Experience (UX) and Customer Experience (CX). If it’s something you’d like to dive into, but don’t know where to start, get in touch with us and we can help refine your strategy, and then apply the right tools from analytics, to eye tracking analysis of your digital footprint.