In the current climate, many companies have been forced to adopt a digital experience for customers or carefully examine customer journeys and customer behavior metrics. This is a time when businesses should pour resources into their audience’s digital experience.
Although it may seem like a colossal and difficult task, it will pay off and help grow your online business.
Steps That Will Help Identify Areas Of Improvement
I. Consider Business Goals
You should clearly understand what your business goals are and how each initiative you take on contributes to those goals. If you’re not clear, discuss this with your management team within the context of growing the business by improving the online experience. It’s crucial to understand what those goals are and how they align to your business goals.
When you think about your online business, what purpose do you want it to serve? What is your objective?
Creating SMART goals makes you are aware of what success looks like and what needs to be done to achieve it. Additionally, they help you realize that your goals are attainable.
For example, if your objective is to increase visitors to your online platform, how will you work towards that goal?
Use the SMART goal technique:
- Specific: What will you gain?
- Measurable: How will you know if you’re successful?
- Achievable: Is the goal realistic?
- Relevant: Is it related to your business objectives?
- Timely or Time-bound: When will it be achieved?
When you define your goals, it helps to break them down into action steps and milestones.
Together with good business habits, you’ll have a guide for constant improvement and achievable goals.
II. User Journey
When creating an online platform for your business, you must always keep your user top of mind. You’ll probably have your own opinions about what will work, but you have to keep in mind that you are not the end-user.
When you consider the user first, you’re giving yourself a better chance to resonate with your target audience, whether it be for content or a product. Remember, you are building a platform for your audience or customer, not for your own pleasure.
First, the content needs to appeal to your audience, which in turn will increase engagement. It needs to be refreshing, new, and thought-provoking.
Not only does the content itself matter, but the presentation, including the design, can influence your audience one way or another. Investing in design that’s eye-pleasing can make a good impression even if the content may not immediately move the audience to action.
Map out the touchpoints and lay out user actions in a timeline. The typical stages for most users are awareness, research, purchase, and use.
III. Tracking and Measuring
For great results, you must track metrics so you can understand what’s happening. There are all kinds of metrics that you can track and measure, but the key is to identify the most useful ones.
These are your key performance indicators (KPIs). These are metrics that demonstrate how effectively an organization is achieving key business objectives necessary for growth.
Examples of KPIs are number of leads captured, membership registrations, downloads of gated content, email sign-ups, number of orders, or revenue.
It’s also a good idea to track user behavior around your KPIs. Here are some areas to look at when tracking user behavior:
- Conversion Goals: email sign-up, form submission, downloads of gated content, or purchases.
- Behavior Flow: determine the clickstream path for how a user travels from one page to the next as well as engagement.
- Events tracking: interaction within the website, such as downloads and sharing content.
This requires web analytics tools, such as Google Analytics or Adobe Analytics, and knowledge of how to implement the tracking. Usually solutions that provide specific features to your audience, such as email marketing materials or video, include tracking in their platforms.
IV. Website Analysis
Since user behavior is imperative for understanding what’s working and what needs improvement, you must be able to analyze and interpret all the data provided by the tools you’ve deployed.
When you’re looking to optimize your online platform, you will need a basic but thorough website analysis for a better understanding of things that can be improved to grow your business online.
Once you’ve acquired the data for your measurement period, you will be able to see insights about your users, including:
- Number of Visits
- Acquisition Details (traffic channels and specific referral sources)
- Landing & Exit Pages
There is a lot of interesting data but the key to identifying areas of improvement is to focus analysis on user behavior data and outcomes.
Here is a list of 5 things you need to keep in mind when performing this analysis:
- Understand the data.
- Figure out what draws the attention of the user.
- Identify where your users get stuck.
- Explore the performance of pages and sections.
- Analyze the outcomes of the user journeys.
By using the list mentioned above, you can improve the content, marketing tactics, and design efforts for the customer journey.
Thoughts on Identifying Areas of Improvement To Grow Your Online Business
First, set goals, then focus on creating an experience with a design that is simple and easy to navigate with the user in mind. Perform analysis by collecting and exploring data that will be used for improvement and content optimization.
While all of this will take time and multiple tries, when you put in action towards the steps above, you will have a much better chance to achieve success and growth for your online business.
Don’t always focus on the big score. Be consistent, provide valuable content and a valuable experience, and you will eventually reach your goals.
The journey on its own may be difficult and long but it is part of the process. Trying alternatives is the best way to know what actually works. It’s a testing process and it will help you navigate the right way to go.