Analytics is the process of looking at data to discover patterns and insights that can help you to make future decisions.
There are several types of analytics you should be monitoring when you’re running an eCommerce business. These include:
- Website analytics (how your website is performing and where your traffic is coming from)
- eCommerce analytics (how many sales you’re making and which products are performing best/worst)
- Marketing analytics (how your marketing campaigns are performing in terms of conversions and sending traffic to your site)
- Customer analytics (who your customers are and how they’re behaving)
These aren’t discrete categories and there is a lot of overlap between the different types of analytics, but it gives you a rough idea of what you should be tracking.
It’s really important to collect as much data as you can in all of these areas. Without any metrics to track, you won’t have any idea if your business is growing or failing and you won’t have any idea what to do to improve it.
Website analytics tools like Google analytics monitor all the traffic that comes to your website and what website visitors do once they’re on your site.
You can see information including:
- How many people are coming to your site and how these traffic levels change over time
- Where your website traffic is coming from
- What people search for to find your site on Google and other search engines
- What pages people are visiting when they land on your site
- How long people are staying on your site
- How people are navigating around your site
- The demographics of users on your site such as age, gender, and geographic location
This information can help you to understand how people are finding your site, what they’re looking for, and give you other important insights to help improve your website navigation, design, and content.
eCommerce analytics platforms present data and reports to help you understand how shoppers are behaving on your site.
Some of the eCommerce data you’ll probably want to track includes:
- Total sales by day/week/month/year/all-time
- Average order value
- Conversion rate
- Cart abandonment rate
- Bestselling products
- Product returns
By analyzing your sales data and trends you can find out which are your most popular product lines, find out more about your customers’ shopping behavior, and identify site optimizations you can make to improve conversion rate and reduce cart abandonment rate.
Your customer analytics data can help you to understand your customers better.
Some valuable metrics in customer analytics include:
- Customer demographics such as age, gender, location
- The social media platforms they use
- Whether users typically view the mobile or desktop version of your site
- Your ratio of first-time vs. repeat customers
- Customer Lifetime Value
- Engagement statistics such as time spent in each session on your site
Studying your customer analytics can give you important insights about your typical customer journey, which are your most valuable customers, at what stage in the buying journey you lose customers and why, and what type of products are most suitable for your audience.
You can also use your customer analytics to create segmented marketing campaigns and target different groups of customers based on criteria like their location, preferences, and past shopping behavior.