Read about the most reliable platforms for digesting digital marketing data
Digital marketing dashboards come with a lot of buttons and switches these days. Lawyers need to know what to turn on to turn up the integration of data into smart marketing plans.
Most of you have most likely heard of, if not interacted with, Google Analytics, currently the most reputable and widely used platform. This is the free data-mining application that Google gives anyone with a website access to, like you.
But there are other analytic engines. For example, Facebook and other networking platforms can reveal beneficial, complementary information about how your digital marketing efforts are working—and what you can do better in the future. The key is understanding what Internet analytics even mean to your law practice—and, once you get it, how to take advantage of the most useful data sets.
So let’s start at Data Trailhead. It’s a crowded place, this Internet, but everyone enters cyberspace from said sign and leaves a trail of crumbs behind that can teach lawyers a lot about what people do when they visit your website, and maybe why they only stayed for a few seconds. Prospective clients leave footprints on contact forms they only fill out half way before exiting your site and the keywords they type in a search engine to find your website or social profile along their pathway.
Each recorded action says a lot about how users feel about a particular website, what they’re really looking for, and whether or not they’re likely to come back. Not only can this data trail help law firms improve the quality of their websites, but also it can help marketers decipher what drives a potential client’s decision-making process. All of these markings are part of a trail of data that users leave behind for marketing scientists to interpret and leverage for ROI.
Really it’s quite fun to access and analyze free information that can make our legal clients smarter, but you have to look closely and carefully, uncovering each print and the meaning behind each digital tailing. All of the information attorneys need to act on is readily available, but to decode it you’ll need the right analytics tools.
Choosing an analytics platform
There are plenty of analytics tools circulating in cyberspace, and some may be landing on your screen regularly. Each one boasts slightly different features and marginally distinctive purposes. To choose the most appropriate analytics machine, first evaluate business needs and goals to see how your priorities match up with various platforms. For example, one tool may do a particular data extraction really well, but does that platform give you what you need when looking globally at your website performance? Start with these questions:
- What do you want to achieve through analytics?
- What data does your firm deem most meaningful to measure?
- What features do you already know are important to you?
- How many employees will be using the analytics software and how tech-savvy are they?
- How much technical support will you need?
- How much customization do you require in your tool?
- Will you need to import data from other sources?
- What is your budget for an analytics tool?
If you don’t know the answers to these questions, that’s OK. An agency like Network Affiliates that specifically handles digital marketing for lawyers can walk you through each one to help you select the best platform for your practice’s particular needs and aspirations. At the bare minimum, most attorney websites can get away with an analytics engine that will collect the following information:
- How many people are visiting your website
- Where those visitors are coming from
- Who those people are and what they’re doing there
- What’s driving traffic to and from your website
- What visitors are searching for within your site
- Which website pages perform best and worst
- Which pages get the most clicks
- Which parts of your web presence need improvement
- What elements your top-performing content contains
- Which online campaigns are driving the most traffic and highest conversion rates
Start with two tools: traffic & social
As we mentioned there are a number of good analytics tools out there, but we’ll cover a couple that may be especially helpful to lawyers. Google Analytics and Facebook Insights are both relatively easy to set up and manage. The first measures website traffic and all those key performance indicators related to people coming to your site. The second strictly tracks social-media metrics which, when used properly in conjunction with website analytics, have the potential to give you an advantage over the competition.
Designed to integrate into any website, Google Analytics is a free web-based application that tracks and analyzes visitors in real time and measures the ROI of your digital marketing campaigns. It also helps lawyers evaluate online visitors, learning what they like and don’t like, and see new ways to encourage visitors to return more often. To assist people just learning the platform, Analytics Academy offers a helpful selection of video lessons from experts to help you get up and running. The baseline Google Analytics is free, but Analytics Premium comes with a fee.
- Google AdWords integration
- Internal traffic filters, so your stats are only affected by your customers
- In-depth geographic data on incoming traffic
- Navigation summary detailing how users move around your website
- Page-by-page breakdown of your bounce rate
- Analysis of keywords used to find your site
- Visitor loyalty tracking
- Easy PDF or email reports for sharing stats with business partners
- Future goal setting assistance
- Completely customizable dashboard
For obvious reasons, lawyers may choose to forego some social spheres. But most law firms maintain some presence on this leading social platform via a Facebook business page. As soon as you start an account, you will have access to Facebook Insights. This analytics tool can help you grasp what your Facebook “fans” are interested in, measure the engagement on each post, and help you communicate more effectively with your social media network. The best bonus? It’s free.
- Daily tracking of page-visit numbers
- Evaluates most popular posts and post reach
- Measures “eyeballs” through numbers on likes, shares and comments
- Culls stats on where “likes” come from and what’s driving them
- Sorts posts using different parameters of engagement
- Keeps tabs on negative feedback
- Stats tracked on all posted videos
- Mobile apps available for on-the-go management
Analyzing the data
Once you’ve successfully selected, set up and started to see the potential of your analytics platforms, it’s time to really do something with the data. And for that you may need a skilled analytics professional to assist you in making the numbers actionable. It can be overwhelming sorting through the intelligence and deciding what to prioritize focusing on first. Sometimes KPIs from different platforms don’t match up. It’s important to have a digital marketing expert in your corner when things are not clear. Likewise, it’s important to make sure you understand how multiple platforms can work in tandem to help direct a future digital marketing strategy.
The point is to make good use of your new insights and not to let the statistics frustrate you. In the big world of big data, sometimes the best decision you can make is to secure some sage advice.
If you’re looking for a digital marketing agency for lawyers, you’ve come to the right place. We’re here to leverage all the freebies that technology has to offer. And we’re here to make it as simple as possible. Call today for a free and confidential digital marketing evaluation. 1-888-461-1016