3 Tips for Overcoming Analytics Obsession

Can’t get your eyes off the calculator? Take a step back.

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Analytics have become a fundamental part of marketing. With the ability to track how many people see a given ad online, where they come to your website from, and how often they opened your e-mails or listened to your podcast, it can become tempting to drown in all of the numbers. But analytics obsession will lead to a disorganized marketing strategy and a major headache. Here are three tips for overcoming analytics obsession so that you can focus on the numbers that really matter.

  1. Understand what your numbers actually mean. By learning more about customer behavior, you’ll get a firmer grasp on the meaning of your analytics, which will help you determine the importance of them. Think of your website. You may want to see the number of website viewers going up, up, up. But the truth is, if your website isn’t serving shoppers well, it doesn’t matter how many people are visiting it. What you really want to know is details like which page people hang out on the longest or which page leads them to click away. It’s one thing to see how many people subscribe to your YouTube channel, but it’s much more important to know how many people are actually completing your videos. Those numbers have a more direct influence on your sales. Obsessing over every tiny number will leave you feeling like you don’t know which direction to turn.
  2. Set times when you’re going to check numbers. It’s easy to spend your entire day on social media watching your follower number go up or down. But minor variations will occur every single day. It’s better to track large trends than to obsessively watch a number. Once or twice a month, have an “analytics day” where you do a deep dive into your numbers. The exception to this rule might be a targeted ad campaign, where you’re doing A/B testing on a few different ads. Even then, try to only check results once a day instead of once an hour.
  3. Pick three to five numbers to track. Honestly, there are probably thousands of analytics numbers you could focus on. But the relationships between them and the variants will drive you insane. By focusing on a few, you’ll have a more concrete strategy in place. These should be a few of your KPIs and have some kind of direct effect on your sales numbers—not just vanity metrics.