Web tracking: how does it work and why is it important for your business?

Web tracking: how does it work and why is it important for your business?

How can you measure your company’s return on investment reliably and solidly? The answer lies in tracking your business efforts by collecting useful data through web tracking.  

Tracking not only allows you to understand the performance of your website but also provides you with relevant data about your visitors and their behavior. 

 

Definition: what is tracking?  

Tracking is the collection, evaluation, and analysis of navigation data on a website. This data can be quantitative or qualitative: bounce rate, abandonment rate, average time per session, number of users, device used (mobile, tablet, or desktop), traffic source (paid or natural referencing), type of audience, etc. In concrete terms, a code tags your URLs to extract certain data related to navigation on your web pages. Thus, tracking highlights the links between your marketing campaigns and the way they generate new leads.  

Applied to digital marketing, tracking allows you to measure the effectiveness of any communication action and to identify with precision which are your most efficient acquisition levers to optimize your marketing strategy.  

In marketing, tracking allows you to trace the behavior of users on your website. How did they get to your site? How do they navigate it? Which pages encourage them to act? All this information will be useful to optimize your marketing actions and better meet your customers’ needs. 

 

Why is tracking important for your business?  

By qualifying the source of your traffic and your audience, tracking tells you where your prospects are coming from. Thus, you know exactly which marketing campaigns are effective in attracting them and which are not.  

Tracking also helps you determine which channels are the most profitable and therefore, where you should focus your improvement efforts. Tracking also provides you with valuable information about your site: which pages are converting, but also which ones are generating bounces or abandonment. This way, you can improve the customer experience on your site by making the navigation more fluid.  

In short, tracking highlights your strengths and weaknesses to allow you to implement a marketing strategy of constant improvement. 

 

What indicators should you monitor for your tracking?  

  

  • Bounce rate  

The bounce rate is a marketing indicator that corresponds to the percentage of visitors who access a page and then leave the site without clicking anywhere or visiting another page on that same site. It is recommended to analyze the bounce rate for each page of your website. This way, you can see what actions people take after arriving on each page. This allows you to find ways to fix pages with a high bounce rate and see what works on pages with a low bounce rate.   

  • Conversion Rate  

There’s no doubt that site traffic and visitors are important. But if thousands of people visit your website, it’s the number of people who convert into paying customers that matters ultimately. When you track your conversion rate, you can see how well each page is performing and focus on the type of activity that increases the number of people who convert. This means determining what a conversion is based on your goals. It could be someone downloading a free guide, signing up for your email newsletter, or buying your product.  

Email Click-Through Rate  

CTR is the percentage of people who opened your email and clicked on a link in its content. It’s a good idea to look at the average click-through rates for your industry so you can compare your rates to the average. This will help you see where you stand compared to some of your competitors. 

  • Leads  

It is essential to understand where your prospects and customers are coming from. To do this, you can implement a specific lead tracking strategy. You can use Google Analytics and Salesforce to understand how your potential customers find you, how they interact with your website, and what stage they are in your sales funnel. The goal is to convert website visitors into leads and leads into customers.  

  • Exit pages  

There is a difference between an exit and a bounce. A bounce defines someone who arrives at your site and leaves after visiting one page. An exit is when someone visits a certain number of pages on your site and then leaves.  

Some of the pages on your site will naturally have a high exit rate. For example, if you sell products online, you can expect your order confirmation page to have a high exit rate, as visitors have probably completed their purchase. But if you notice that other pages have a high exit rate, it’s worth understanding why. Look at those pages and ask yourself why people leave your site. 

What tracking tools should I use?  

To analyze and track your different indicators, you can use several platforms such as:  

  • Google Analytics  

This solution allows you to perform real-time analysis every time a user visits a web page. You collect anonymous information on how he interacted with the page. The configuration of Google Analytics is very simple; you just need to insert a piece of code (the pixel) on your website. Once the Google Analytics pixel is installed on your website, it starts collecting data and creating reports automatically. The basic version of Google Analytics collects a wide variety of metrics such as bounce rate, time spent on the site, pages per session, and data such as gender, age, location, etc.  

  • Google ads  

The Google ads tracking pixel is essential for all businesses that advertise on Google. While Google Analytics can give you some insight into the performance of your ads, you will get an in-depth view of your paid initiatives through Google Ads. The same goes for all advertising platforms.   

Google Tag Manager (GTM)  

Google Tag Manager allows you to put forward tracking tags such as events and tracking pixels, without having to modify or alter your site’s source code. Instead of adding each pixel manually on your site, add them via GTM’s intuitive interface and you’ll be able to track your visitors’ behavior on your Facebook page, Instagram, LinkedIn, and on your sponsored campaigns, all in one tool. 

 

Best practices in web tracking  

  • Identify your visitors  

You can identify the geographical information of your website visitors by using their IP addresses. By finding out where your visitors are, you can target the appropriate areas.   

Examine your customers’ digital engagement and behavior: how often are they on social media, responding to your email campaigns, or participating in your events and webinars? This gives you insight as to which marketing channels you should use to find your next customer.  

  • Determine where the traffic is coming from  

This will help you determine where it is best to invest your time and marketing budget. This way, you can have detailed information that will allow you to create targeted campaigns. For example, identifying which device and browser are being used to view your site can help you when redesigning your web pages.  

  • Consider where you are losing customers  

Attracting the right traffic is one of the most important tasks in marketing: it’s not just about driving traffic to the website, but also about attracting the right traffic. With several marketing channels at your fingertips, it may be easy to assume that finding your target audience will be a breeze. However, it’s not recommended to flood each channel with as much content as it can handle.  

Overexposure to a product, company, or type of content can make your target audience unresponsive to your communications. On the contrary, by targeting only the best-performing channels and understanding where your potential audience spends most of their time, you’ll get a more direct and targeted approach at a lower cost by ensuring that you’re only directing the right prospects to your website.  

 

With a good tracking strategy, you will be able to track and identify the return on investment of your marketing channels. This all helps to give you an idea of the most profitable web path, and ultimately to better optimize it for future visitors. If you need more information, don’t hesitate to contact us.