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What are the management challenges that can occur with analytics? Much of it stems from human error and assumptions that cumulatively can hinder valuable results and decisions.
1. Misalignment of goals
Go back over the original purpose for a site and review why it exists. The site should reflect the core reasons for what your business provides. It also serves as an anchor for what augments the products and services – apps, content information, and the social media that compliments it. So given all that is in the site, does the web analytics goals selected support a key strategy for the business? If not, make an adjustment to the tags.
2. Poor understanding of what is needed
This is reflected in poor metrics selection. One metric is sometimes not enough to describe an objective. Considered how an objective can be described in a combination of other metrics or as a rate over relevant time periods. Try to develop questions around two or more metrics to gain a story about what behavior is happening on a site. Examine reports like multichannel and traffic flow to see what could be influencing site decisions.
3. Poor tool usage
This can stem from misunderstanding metrics, as well as misunderstanding a tool’s capability and underinvesting in the analyst. Silo a department without interaction with business operations can lead to misuse of a tool. Spreadsheets can be nortious for this. Individual spreadsheets contained errors and multiple versions of the truth.
Are you truly implementing steps to improve a website? Managers must make time to review and be proactive with implementing solutions, otherwise value is lost because the information is left in a “silo” with no action behind the data. Businesses can not silo analytic reporting and expect success.
In Competing on Analytics, business intelligence and analytics expert Thomas Davenport noted four characteristics that are within any company competing on analytics:
- Analytics supported a key strategy
- The approach to and management of analytics was enterprise wide
- Senior management was committed
- The company as a whole made a strategic bet on analytics based competition
Analytics must be applied judiciously, with an eye to be continually renewed. Davenport stated it best – “Without a distinctive capability (what you do to set your business apart), it becomes impossible to compete and distinguish what data is important.”
The video below was created for UBM Tech’s site Business Agility (sponsored by IBM). The site, a perspective on business technology that analysts and managers face, went dark about a year ago, but much of the material remains relevant.
This video examines the importance of analytics, but from a perspective of business structure. Analytics impacts how your business operates. The iterative nature of analytics creates an opportunity to manage resources and tools. These operations can then be optimized for growing a business vs. mere acquiring a business. Looking at the leaders in retail and technology give evidence that analytics, when launched properly, can provide the right boost for a business.
What do think managers should focus upon to strengthen their tool set? Share your thoughts here on Zimana blog.