Sharp marketers understand that using data is key to making smart decisions when developing and implementing a digital strategy.

In the first post of our three-part series, we discussed the importance of taking inventory of your data. To move forward, it is important to understand your numbers before you develop and implement a strategy. Putting a plan into action helps manage the efficiency of all channels.

Compare Channel Performance

Now that you’ve taken inventory of your data, you’re able to make a concrete comparison of your site’s channel performance. To do this, size up the intel by measuring site performance, acquisition patterns, and exploring channel data. Take a deep dive into the actual website traffic, find patterns, and evaluate every channel’s performance.

When comparing the success of each channel, you’re able to see which are working best for your brand and manage their efficiency and effectiveness. Based on the current performance of each channel, you can weigh the pros and cons in order to expand the present tactics in place.

Evolve Current Strategy

By understanding your highest and lowest performing channel, you can make the executive decision on where and how to focus your time and energy. For example, organic traffic may be your strongest channel, while social media is your weakest. You have a decision on your hands – do you focus on social or SEO?  Take a look at your data — if you see potential for higher returns with more effort toward SEO, invest the time into it and pull some energy away from social schedules.

Also mull over A/B testing for ads, page copy, or creative to see which is the most successful.

Consider taking an underperforming page and writing two distinct sets of copy for it.  Launch one set of copy for a set amount of time, and integrate the second set on the page for the same amount of time as the previous. Compare the traffic — barring seasonality, which has the most success?

As you see one page resonating moreso with your audience, roll out similar changes to other underperforming pages. This is what data-driven strategy truly means.

Create Consistency

To avoid analytical issues, define a consistent tagging strategy that is echoed throughout your site. You can do this by diving into the two main parts of Google Tag Manager (GTM):

  • Tags – Tell GTM what you want it to do, like send a page view to Google Analytics.
  • Triggers – Let GTM know when you want it to fire a certain tag, like anytime someone visits a specific page.

You can create tags and triggers through very simple steps. The insights that you uncover can help you change or expand your strategy further.

You don’t have to be an expert in Google Analytics to grab hold of these insights, but the steps to building a strategy and the implementation of it are crucial to all marketers. Getting to know your data early on will save you time and give you new ideas. Plus, it will inform the tactics of your digital strategy.

Having an implementation strategy in place, allows you to evaluate and evolve for new digital marketing innovations. In our next and final post of our Google Analytics series, we’ll review how to develop a cohesive reporting structure.

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