- Search Engine Marketing: The Yellow Pages Question
- Search Engine Marketing: Making the Connection
- Social Media Marketing: Social Media Sites
- Brand Marketing: Managing Your Brand On The Internet
- Reputation Management: Dealing With Review Sites
- Social Media Marketing: Engaging With Customers
- Mobile Marketing: Huge Growth Opportunity
- Mobile Marketing: Text Messaging Grows With Consumers of All Ages
- Mobile Marketing: Daily Deal Coupons
- Inbound Marketing: Keys To An Effective Website
- Email Marketing: How To Build Client Relationships
- Website Design: Multiple Methods of Contact
- Promotional Strategies and Tactics
- Video Marketing: Video Distribution
- Article Syndication: Key Site Article Distribution Sites
- Image Marketing
- Banner Advertising
- Social Media Marketing: Facebook Ads
- Search Engine Marketing: SEO
- Tracking Your Results
- The Bottom Line
Something that is fairly unique to the internet, compared to many other advertising methods, is how much information you can track about where your customers are coming from and which sources are the most (and least) profitable for you.
The nature of the internet lets you track the source of every visitor to your website, so you can tell how many potential customers are arriving from Google, Facebook, videos on YouTube and any other place you post your content.
You can even track these sources down to specific messages or media. For example, if you post a video on YouTube, you can code a special tracking link into it so you know exactly how many people end up visiting your website as a result of that specific video.
If you do any other advertising, like flyer or Yellow Pages, do you know how many visitors those sources are sending you? Probably not – there’s really no way to track them with any accuracy, beyond asking every customer where they heard about you.
There are many tracking services available to you, ranging from free solutions to hundreds, or even thousands of dollars per month. One of the most effective is actually free to use – Google Analytics.
Google Analytics will track visitors coming to your website, where they’re coming from and many other things. It will even tell you what keywords people searched for when they found your website in the search results.
This data can be invaluable to you because over time you can analyze it and work it back into your website to get even better results.
For example, using our Bellingham plumber example again, when you analyze your site’s data you might find that you’re getting traffic from Google for the phrase “bellingham plumbing and heating” – a phrase you didn’t do any optimization for.
Seeing that, you could hop over to Google and see just where your site ranks for that term. Let’s say you find it towards the bottom of the page, maybe spot 7 or 8 (there are normally ten results shown on each page).
From this research, you now know two important things – people are already finding your site using that phrase and you could quite likely improve your ranking by doing a little bit of SEO for that phrase.
You might write a new article to add to your website that uses the phrase “bellingham plumbing and heating” or you might just add it to a page or two that are already on the site.
Simply by doing this little bit of work, you would most likely start getting more visitors who are searching for that term because your site would move higher in the rankings.
Google Analytics doesn’t just track your visitors, however – it can also track the actions those visitors take once they arrive at your website.
For example, if you have a lead capture form on your site to get people’s name and email address so you can follow up with them in the future, you can track the people who actually sign up for your email list. With Google Analytics, you could track all the way from the click on one of your ads through to someone signing up to receive your emails.
And from there, you could use tracking codes to identify those people when they come into your place of business or contact you for more information. This lets you track the exact cost per customer by calculating your advertising cost versus the number of people who wind up doing business with you.
You’ll know which advertising sources are most profitable, which ones are not working very well at all, and which ones are generating the most new leads. This is the type of detail that is extremely difficult, if not impossible to track through traditional advertising mediums like Yellow Page and newspaper ads.