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Data Tracking

Data tracking enables companies to make smart, data‑driven decisions. Read this to learn more about how data tracking can help your business.

Data tracking describes the process of choosing specific metrics to track and analyze in order to improve your business and optimize the customer experience. You must have a strategy for tracking data in place to make your efforts effective. Data tracking software or data tracking services can help your business better understand the customer journey and increase your bottom line.

If you want to learn more about data tracking and all that it entails, you’re in the right place. Read this article to learn more about what data tracking is and how to track customer data.

What is data tracking?

Data tracking involves selecting metrics and events to track, then analyzing and organizing this data in order to produce valuable insights that can help your business. So, essentially, data tracking describes the process of collecting specific data points in order to better understand customer behavior and make data-driven business decisions. Once you create analytics reports from the data, you gain insights into improving customer experience, business operations, and advertising effectiveness.

Benefits of tracking data include:

Data trackers work by recording consumers’ actions on the internet. These actions send data back to you or may create personalized ads to encourage the consumer’s behavior. For web pages, trackers record surfing patterns and purchases.

What is the purpose of data tracking?

Why would you want to use data tracking? Data tracking can be a valuable tool for marketers when used effectively. Generally, you track data because those efforts pay off. Some of the payoffs of tracking customer data may include:

  • A better understanding of customer behavior: You learn how often people visit your website or social media and what they do when they get there.
  • Analyze trends and patterns: It is impossible to know what works without tracking data. If you spend thousands on an ad campaign that fails to bring results, data tracking reveals that. You can also learn what customers do when they visit your site. Do they read your blog and then buy something? That trend signals you need to keep up your blog content. Do they follow an email link and then inquire? Then it’s likely your email campaigns work. Or do people skip your targeted emails and head straight to your Instagram? You can spend more time on Instagram, and less on email, if you know that.
  • Pinpoint your target audience: Data tracking reveals where your customers come from, whether geographically or virtually. For example, if you learn that your customer base is based largely in the Midwest, you can cater better to that audience. Likewise, if you attract loyal teenage and young adult consumers from YouTube and TikTok, you better keep up those videos!

What are the benefits of data tracking?

There is no doubt that data tracking services and software can improve business performance. Also, with more targeted and less intrusive ways to track data, you can refine the type of data you collect. In fact, data tracking offers far more benefits than disadvantages. A well-planned and fruitful data tracking plan will:

  • Segment your audience: Audience segmentation is necessary for less intrusive and more effective campaigns. Once you find that target audience, you can segment further into new customer campaigns, empty cart reminders, and frequent customers.
  • Create more personalized marketing campaigns: You can create a personalized rather than a general campaign when you know your customer base and what they prefer. For example, if a customer keeps visiting your website to buy one mechanical pencil brand, you can send them ads or coupons regarding that item.
  • Increase conversions: A conversion occurs when someone visits your website and completes the desired action. If you run a law office, the desired action may be for potential clients to call the law firm and make an appointment. For retail stores, the desired action may be someone visiting your website and buying something. If you have good data tracking, you find people more likely to become clients or customers.
  • Strengthen customer relationships: Catering to a client’s specific interests produces stronger relationships. Being precise and relevant keeps customers coming back.
  • Make data-driven decisions for your business: Business resources are finite, and you need to know where your efforts make the most significant difference. If a product or service doesn’t sell online, you may decide to discontinue it or divert advertising dollars to something more successful. Likewise, if data reveals Pinterest posts generate more revenue than paid Facebook ads, you can focus resources on Pinterest and spend less on Facebook ads.

How to track customer data

You must have a plan before going forward with data tracking. Otherwise, you spend time and money on an unfocused approach that delivers useless data. Your data is only as good as your plan, metrics, and software.

Create a data tracking plan

The best data tracking plans outline:

  • Data to track: Your desired data could include the age and geographic location of customers or how your customers find your website (Google, social media, email, etc).
  • Where you track the data: “Everywhere” is not a good answer. You may create a generalized campaign or one too unfocused to yield results. Narrow down where to track data (i.e. your website, email conversions, or social media pages).
  • Data tracking reasons: Your “why” is vital for setting goals and creating approaches. You may wish to track data to make better ad campaigns or see if a new product will meet your audience’s expectations.

Once you answer these questions, you can form a data tracking plan. You can do it in three steps:

  1. Set objectives: These objectives define your data tracking plan and help you focus. Your goals may include assessing a new website feature or app or finding your most effective marketing channels. Once you know these objectives, you define the required data.
  2. Identify actions to track: A data tracking plan focuses on particular user actions, such as clicking a link or viewing a video ad. For example, if you want customers to download your app and buy a monthly subscription, you will track app downloads and who sets up subscription profiles. Data can reveal customers who download the app and use free features versus those who sign up for a subscription. If you find subscriptions numbers lacking, there may be something wrong with your sign-up process, or you need to make paid features more appealing.
  3. Set up a data tracking model: You will likely accomplish this with data tracking software or services. It involves laying out events to track, placing those events in a code base, and understanding their importance to your business. You start by summarizing events to track (such as a link click or subscription) and why you want to track them. The service or software will place the events in the codebase. As you receive information, you can inform stakeholders of the results.

Determine which metrics to focus on

You’ll need to identify specific metrics that align with your goals. These metrics can vary based on objectives and can be customized to suit your goals. For example, your metrics may include:

  • Acquisition: Generally, the growth rate of new consumers to your website or social media and how they discovered you. For example, you may learn you gained 150 customers per day from a blog article you posted on Twitter.
  • Activation: Activation is a standard metric for online games and apps. It can reveal total users, the rate at which they activate their accounts, and current active users. For example, this metric may show that your game has 150,000 users, but only 25,000 continue playing. You may need to see if an overly tricky game level or glitch is chasing your users away.
  • Retention: The churn rate indicates whether customers stay with you or leave. It can reveal how long they keep a subscription or cancellation rate. You can also learn how often they log on and their satisfaction.
  • Customer LTV: This metric includes the average revenue per customer, purchase frequency, and the time it takes to break even with acquisition costs. Your expectations must line up with your products; no one will buy new windows every week, but it is not unreasonable to expect customers to purchase mechanical pencil lead every two weeks.
  • Pricing page conversion: It is safe to assume that customers visiting your pricing page are interested in your product. However, if your pricing page generates more closed windows than sign-ups, you may need to reconsider your prices or page design.

Use data tracking software

Data tracking software is the easiest way to conduct these efforts. Mailchimp offers data tracking services and a software platform that will:

  • Help you manage digital advertising
  • Create reports and analytics to help you make informed decisions
  • Improve data quality with better behavioral targeting tools
  • Improve audience segmentation, so you do not waste time or money on uninterested people

Final notes

Data tracking can improve your business’ online reach and profitability. It helps you create target audiences, track product or service success, and reveal problematic areas. You cannot improve or promote effectively without knowledge, and data trackers bring that to you.

Mailchimp is not just about email lists, it’s an all-in-one marketing platform. We can assist with your data tracking needs by offering a platform that allows you to quickly and easily track, collect, organize, and analyze customer data. This lets you better understand your customers and enables you to provide a more streamlined customer experience, which benefits both you and your customers. Sign up for Mailchimp today and get started with tracking customer data.

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