Data & Analytics Blog


5 Digital Analytics Mistakes to Avoid for Small Businesses

Posted by LPA Software Solutions on May 5, 2020 10:42:00 AM

In today’s business environment, technology is do-or-die for your business. Consider this - marketers who deploy five or more tools in a complete stack generate 39% more results.

Are you willing to forfeit such advantages?

However, your small business can only see such results if you use analytics the right way. Here’s a closer examination of five digital analytics mistakes you should avoid for better results.

What's Digital Analytics?

In simple terms, digital analytics is the collection, assessment, measurement, and interpretation of digital data. Typically, this tracking and assessment happen over interfaces such as websites and mobile applications.

As an essential component of digital intelligence, digital analytics helps you uncover behavior that impacts your operations. For example, in online marketing, digital analytics lets you recognize how users find and consume your apps and/or website.

You can also use digital analytics to plan your workforce more effectively. Other organizations deploy analytics tools to help them stay in better financial shape through more efficient financial planning.

Digital Analytics Mistakes Small Businesses Should Look Out For

It’s one thing to generate data and a whole other thing to make effective use of it. Any investments in digital analytics become successful not when they give you information, but when you learn how to use that information well.

Let's look at a few mistakes you need to steer clear of when dealing with digital analytics.


1. Lacking a Clear Goal for Your Analytics

What gets measured gets done. In the same token, what goes undefined will most likely go undone. Before you sink any dollars into digital analytics, you need to define your objectives.

Once you identify the value you want to draw out of digital analytics, other things can fall into place. For example, your goals can inform what tools to employ. In addition, what you want to achieve influences the metrics you plan to keep up with.

Avoid setting general goals that don’t have granular definitions. Unless it’s smart, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound, you don't want it to direct your analytics investment.

Many businesses fail to tie their website’s performance to a specific business outcome. As a result, the time and money spent in digital analytics get lost in the numbers instead of pointing to a clear path the firm should take.

If, for example, you’re an eCommerce store looking to grow online sales, your analytics needs to be sales heavy. You’ll likely want to track your order volume, cost-per-order, and the conversion rate. These metrics directly relate to your goal to sell more.


2. Chasing Too Many Metrics

Some businesses, in trying to become efficient, swing to the extreme of tracking everything. Yes, there is such a thing as too many metrics. When your digital analytics strategy doesn't narrow down on mission-critical points, you end up chasing the wind.

Having strong computational power and advanced analytics can get you lost in the weeds quickly. That’s because when you track too many metrics, you inevitably lose your focus. Once that happens, your performance slips since you don't have a clear picture of what’s happening or how to respond to it.

A great tip here is to cover fundamental metrics before you start looking at wider, secondary ones.

For example, if you don’t know how accurate your messaging is for your target audience, no amount of digital analysis can help right the ship. You’ll have to solve the fundamental customer targeting issue before seeing the usefulness of your analytics.


3. Valuing Beauty Over Business Value in Reports

Reports are the tools by which data is presented for interpretation by the team. However, because of the key function a report plays, some people generate reports because it’s their job.

At the end of the day, if the report you create is not relevant to your business goals, you will make poor decisions. Execute enough poor decisions, and your business will become the Titanic.

As a rule of thumb, every report must correspond to a meaningful business concern. As you generate analysis reports, ask yourself what business concern it answers and how the report is adding value to the firm.

If there are metrics in your report that don’t help you answer questions relating to the business concern, exclude them. You’ll avoid dressing up your report with content that makes it look useful while it’s just fluff with no essential information.


4. Choose the Correct Tool for the Job

In digital analytics, it’s common to see businesses have misconceptions about the tools that can help them succeed. A common belief is that the more expensive the tool, the better it can help your firm dig deeper for more insights.

Before you get there, there’s a more relevant question: does your firm need these deeper insights?

When choosing a digital analytics tool, you need to set the criteria based on your firm's needs and goals. Making your decisions based on how advanced a tool is will only misdirect you further.

Let the organization's needs justify how complex (or simple) of a digital analytics tool you need.


5. Undetected Tracking Errors

In digital analytics, garbage in equals garbage out. If you have incorrect information in your system, you will draw the wrong conclusions. Thus, you must develop the ability to nip any tracking errors in the bud that might skew your data.

Since the technical team overseeing the process may not understand the skills of the other teams they collaborate with, such errors can go undetected.

For example, it’s easy for a development team not to notice incorrect marketing data due to a tracking error. In such a scenario, unless your technical and marketing teams collaborate regularly, it would be difficult to stop such an error in its tracks.

Institute frequent checks on the data for inconsistencies or errors. You can go the extra mile to train your analysts on the technicalities of tracking, so they become better equipped to spot such errors.


You're Only as Good as the Quality of Your Data

Digital analytics helps you uncover critical insights that can lead to valuable competitive advantages. However, it’s only when you use analytics correctly that such benefits can accrue. Invest in identifying digital analytics mistakes that can tank your strategy to develop lasting ways to resolve such errors for more success.

Leveraging the Power of Analytics (LPA) is a professional service and consulting firm with nearly 20 years of experience in analytics. Talk to us for analytics, data science, artificial intelligence, and related services focused on meeting your satisfaction.


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Topics: Cognos Analytics