analyticsAnalytics are a necessary part of running any business today, and while understanding your business in numbers can get complicated, we are here to help you understand both why analytics are necessary and how to get the most out of their use.

The good news is you don’t need to math wiz to understand the analytics for your business. While analytics used to be number cruncher territory – scaring a lot of people away - there are now a number of sites, programs and platforms available to use that you can work with to get a better understanding of the reports.

It’s just another thing to do. It’s true; analytics do take a bit of time to go through, but it’s worth it. Analytics help you figure out what parts of your marketing are working, and can help you figure out where you should spend your money. Once you get a plan together on how you’ll check your numbers, you’ll see the initial investment in time to look at the analytics was well worth it.

Know what you’re looking for. To start, you need to set your analytics goals – do you want to know what term was searched for that got a visitor to your website? Or, what platform — social media, email or referrals — did they come from? All of these things, and many others, are great to know, but the two analytical numbers you need to know are visitor-to-lead conversion rates and lead-to-customer conversion rates. These numbers are the true measures of your messages effectiveness. By using these analytics, you’ll be able to tell what messages are hitting on all cylinders, and which messages may need a tune-up.

Don’t comparison shop. It is good, and even recommended by some, to use different platforms when analyzing your analytics, but don’t attempt to compare the numbers between different platforms. Platforms, like HubSpot or Google Analytics, use different criteria to get your numbers, so it isn’t always an apples-to-apples comparison and can skew what your course of action should be. You will want to compare trends, and you should see the same patterns on all the platforms you use. If there is a large anomaly in any of those trends, you may want to revisit your numbers on the platform with the anomaly because there may be an issue with the way your reporting was handled.

Not a place for wallflowers. You’ve done all the work, now put your analytics into action. Have a plan of action with your information and don’t be afraid to change your marketing efforts mid-stream if something isn’t working. You’re going through the analytics for a reason, so never let this valuable information go to waste. Instead, use the information to modify your current campaign or start a new one. If you opt not to use a marketing platform to keep tabs on your trends over a set period of time, you may want to use a Google Spreadsheet or Excel to keep track of how your numbers perform. HubSpot also offers a marketing reporting template that makes reporting easier and faster.