Everything About Web Marketing Analytics
With two thirds of legal clients using the internet to find a lawyer, and web traffic diversifying into social media and mobile websites, it can be hard to know what marketing strategies are working for your firm. Fortunately, there's no need to guess. Web analytics marketing can give you solid, reliable information about your web traffic so that you can understand where your clients are coming from and how to get more business for your firm. If you're new to web marketing analytics tools, read on to find out how to make the most of your data—usually without spending any money on software.
Why Should My Firm Use Web Analytics Marketing?
Whenever someone visits your law firm's website, they leave a digital trail. Think of a web marketing analytics tool as an experienced tracker, following those trails to find out where your site visitors go and what they do.
A decade ago, technology for web analytics marketing was still in its infancy, and many sites only kept track of how many visitors their website had. Today, web marketing analytics tools have become a huge industry, with thousands of available reports that look at various aspects of your web traffic. What has become clear for most firms is this: the “old” metrics of site visits and pages visited are not useful for understanding how your website can better help you meet your goals.
Instead of focusing on irrelevant statistics, web analytics marketing helps you figure out what parts of your website are generating clients and which parts are underperforming. The best part about using web marketing analytics is the immense potential for customization: no matter what your needs are, you can generate reports that tell you what you want to know.
Web Analytics Marketing: An Ongoing Process
When firms start looking into web marketing analytics, they may have a clear one-time goal in mind, like a website redesign. For example, let's say your website hasn't been updated regularly or redesigned since 2008. Some parts of your site may still be working and drawing in traffic, and you need to know which parts those are and why they're working in order to make the best possible redesign.
Having this kind of short term goal for your web analytics marketing is fine, but it's important to understand that this type of marketing is always more effective when you use it continuously over a long period of time. Web marketing analytics tools provide you with a valuable way to see trends as they happen, and there's no reason to ignore your analytics just because you achieve one or more of your marketing goals.
When you start to budget for web analytics marketing, then, consider it a permanent part of your business. The internet certainly isn't going away any time soon, and if you're not monitoring your web traffic and analyzing it appropriately, you could miss the next big trend while your competitors capitalize.
Reports and Dashboards and Tools, Oh My!
One of your biggest choices in web marketing analytics is whether to hire a marketing service to handle your analytics or whether to have your own personnel working on analyzing your web traffic. While there are advantages and disadvantages to both routes, the smallest firms may not be able to afford either a full-time web analytics marketing specialist or an outsourcing solution. Solo practitioners may find themselves having to do their own web marketing analytics with very little guidance.
If you do choose to do your web analytics marketing in house (a good choice if you want to keep control over your data and custom reports), but don't have a full time analytics staffer, you can take web seminars on analytics tools and reporting. Seminars can be a great way to familiarize yourself with new reports and creating custom reports.
Making Sense of Your Data
Once you've got the data from your reporting tools, web marketing analytics depend on thinking like a client. The numbers you find are only a small part of your web analytics marketing solution: what you really need to understand is why those numbers are happening and what's making your clients leave your site or come back for more.
For small law firms, figuring out how clients work with your site can be difficult. If you're having problems seeing why one web page is working while another isn't, try asking a non-lawyer acquaintance to enter your site at a landing page that isn't working and tell you what they see. Alternately, just try something new, or even several new landing pages, and see which works best. Continuous experimentation can lead to great web analytics marketing data.
Deciding Your Marketing Strategy
Your web analytics marketing tools can also help you decide what marketing techniques you can still tap into. For example, if you're getting very few visitors from social media websites, you may want to integrate more social media content into your site. If video search engine optimization seems to be working well for your website, you may want to include more videos or even start making a video blog series.
One of the biggest decisions for law firms is whether you want to emphasize pay per click (PPC) or SEO (search engine optimization) traffic. While up to 80 percent of web traffic for law firms depends on organic search results, paid search may be more effective for your firm in particular—and your web marketing analytics can tell you exactly what the situation is.. You should use web marketing analytics to learn more about where your search traffic is coming from, then decide whether to concentrate on playing to your strengths or improving on your weaknesses.
Remember that you can always change your strategy if your web analytics marketing doesn't seem to be effective. No matter what, though, you should give any new strategy some time to work: search engine optimization strategies, in particular, can be slow to pick up steam. Being too impatient could lead to abandoning what might have been a successful strategy if you'd simply stuck with your first web marketing analytics solution.