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Introduction to Analytics

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Digital Marketing - Study Notes:

What is web analytics?

Web analytics involves the collection, measurement, and analysis of website data. Web analytics tools can provide lots of useful information about the origin of website traffic, how website users navigate and interact throughout a website, what content and web pages they're most engaged with, and how they exit the site.

Value of web analytics

Here are some of the ways that web analytics adds value:

  • Data-led decision-making: Marketers can use this data to optimize the performance of their channels and websites by taking data-led decisions. These are actions we take to improve performance based on our understanding of the data we’ve recorded; that is, the data is leading the decision. This is a very effective way to use rational thought to improve performance. While it’s best practice to follow data-led decisions, we must always remind ourselves to ‘trust but verify’.
  • Information source: Apart from helping with decision making, web analytics is to help marketers report back to key stakeholders on how campaigns and websites are performing in relation to your digital marketing efforts. Ultimately, marketers are trying to recreate scenarios that lead to commercial outcomes for their organizations or clients. You can do this by measuring and acting on the data trends you observe using Web Analytics software.
  • Deduce the ‘story’: One of the real values of web data analysis is that it allows you to deduce the ‘story’ behind the data in order to gain valuable insights and enhance business performance.
  • Understand customers better: Web analytics can help you understand your customers better. It tells you who they are, where they're coming from, and what their interests are. It tells you about their demographics and location.
  • Reveal conversion challenges: It also helps reveal any conversion challenges that might exists on your website.
  • Learn what customers like and don’t like: It helps you appreciate what consumers like or don’t like.
  • Interactions with website: You can gain insights into how they interact on your website.

You can use all this information to improve the experience on your site for the consumer and to optimize the channels that consumers use to visit your website.

Web tools

There are a number of analytics tools available on the market today. Some of them are free, and some of them require a paid subscription. Paid analytics products and free analytics products will differ in terms of support, features, and functionality.

Some examples of analytics packages that are available include:

  • Google Analytics and Google Analytics 360, which are part of the Google Marketing Platform
  • Adobe Analytics
  • Woopra
  • Kissmetrics
  • Webtrends
  • Piwik

The market leader and most commonly used analytics program is the free version of Google Analytics, or GA as it is sometimes known. The paid version of GA, called Google Analytics 360, offers some additional functionality in terms of report validity and sample sizes. But it's mainly for websites that receive over 10 million page views per month. For the vast majority of websites, the free version of Google Analytics is perfectly fine.

Because of its functionality and widespread adoption in the market, Google Analytics is seen by many marketers as the single source of truth for website traffic, engagement, and conversion data.


Of course, websites aren't the only way people access the internet. We also must consider the importance of mobile consumers and mobile apps. Alongside websites, it’s possible to collect data from mobile apps using Google Analytics SDK, or software development kit. You’ll need to implement and configure additional code to view mobile app data in the Google Analytics interface. If you are tracking apps, you should note this requirement with your app development team. It's not a task that marketers generally do themselves, but it should be part of the brief to the app development team.

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Please note that the module slides are designed to work in collaboration with the module transcript document. It is recommended that you use both resources simultaneously.

Digital Marketing Resources:

Bryan Kam

Bryan is an IT engineer who has worked in media, financial information, and algorithmic trading. He specializes in automation technology and large-scale Linux deployments. He also has a great interest in literature and the arts, and is working on projects to increase intellectual engagement in London.

The following pieces of content from the Digital Marketing Institute's Membership Library have been chosen to offer additional material that you might find interesting or insightful. While relevant to this module, you will not be assessed on this content.

You can find more information and content like this on the Digital Marketing Institute's Membership Library


Analytics with Google Analytics
Bryan Kam
Skills Expert

This module begins with the fundamentals of web analytics and the associated legal responsibilities and best practices concerning data collection, consent, and privacy that enable a digital marketer to draw actionable conclusions from website or marketing channel data. It demonstrates how to set up and configure Google Analytics and install Google Analytics tracking code to glean insights about the website’s traffic and audience. It covers setting campaign goals to analyze performance and analyze customer conversion journeys. It also provides comprehensive detail on how to use Google Analytics reports and features to monitor and analyze digital campaigns.