In marketing (and in life), timing is essential. It may be as simple as making the light before it turns red (good timing!). Or it may be something as big as when to pop the big question.
If you’re a marketer, there has never been a better time to pop the question…around site analytics. Okay, it’s not quite as sexy as “popping the question,” but it still benefits from good timing.
Google just released a major overhaul to Google Analytics, their amazing — and free — cloud-based web analytics package. Tweets are flying, especially if you follow the hashtag #googleanalytics, there are a lot of people very excited about the new Google Analytics. That makes this the perfect time to get your clients’ websites tagged and tracking.
If they are already using Google Analytics, you should dive deep into some of the new features, like custom dashboards and improved linking with Google Adwords. The Google Analytics blog outlines some of the new features.
I’m a hands-on emarketer, so I try to use new features before I roll them out to clients. (For example, a few weeks back, I blogged about my poor experience using StumbleUpon’s new Paid Discovery advertising platform.) I’ve been using Google Analytics for several years and I already like what I see with this new release. It is impressive how much utility Google has infused into this free software package. The linking to Google AdWords gives me better control over my search engine marketing (SEM) campaigns, and that’s just good business for me and my clients.
However, Google Analytics will not work for every campaign or every client. Many clients will not like the idea of using Google’s servers to track their campaigns. Be sure to check out all of the pros and cons of Google Analytics before recommending it to a paying client.
If you’re unfamiliar with Google Analytics, I recommend Web Analytics: An Hour a Day, which is a clear guide to getting started. It will detail everything from basic concepts to detailed site analysis. It’s worth the read, especially for beginners.
So that’s it. Go check out Google Analytics. It’s free and it’s now.