In your Book „Web Analytics 2.0“ you talk about the bigger picture of collecting data and generating insights. There is one statement that I really like: „If you marry the ‚what‘ with the ‚why‘, you“ll have a lifetime happiness. I guarantee it.“ Can you explain that?
Most of the time we are so obsessed with Omniture and Google Analytics and WebTrends and all the quantitative data that they spew out that we miss the fact that all this quantitative data is simply explain what happened (what pages were seen, what products were purchases, where people came from etc) but this data does not explain why visitors to the site did what they did. Why did they bounce so much? Why did so many abandon the carts? Why is nobody clicking on the big red button?
I want those answers!
Hence I’ve become a big fan of usability studies, surveys, testing and experimentation, heuristic evaluations and other such qualitative approaches. They tell us why people behave the way they do, and it provides critical context for what actually happened.
I realized, that Managers are highly attracted by data, espacially „big data“. The qualitative look is much more harder to get and it looks „weak“ against the power of data. What is it about? What is your recommendation for people that have to convince the C-Suite about the need for more qualitative research?
I don’t agree with the weak implication. It is not weak, we probably should rethink what we present.
For example I love creating a tag cloud of the complaints/feedback from surveys responses. It is amazing to see the some words (and hate! :)) appear again and again. It can be very moving.
I love doing online usability studies where the entire session of the user is captured on video and audio. I get some users to visit our site, some of our direct competitor (in both cases to complete the exact same task). Watching those videos and seeing how much people struggle on our site, and perhaps not at all on our competitor, can be a great motivator for driving change for any executive. After all they also want to deliver happiness to our users.
I use other such techniques when it comes to the „why data.“
Sounds interesting. Is there a kind of a struggle between the customer-centric and qualitative view and the data-driven and quantitative view on things?
I don’t think so. I think the core problem is that the two camps don’t understand each other enough. So it is a matter of education, a matter of meeting each other, a matter of reading the other person’s books. 🙂
There is no doubt that quantitative data is top of mind for executives and analysts. We have to show them how amazing and sexy we qualitative people are.
Then they’ll see the light!
On the other hand, companies are still „blind“ in terms of competitive data. You recommend to establish a competitive intelligence – how can this look like? Isn’t it impossible to compare KPIs of Websites?
I appreciate the fact that competitive intelligence is still a geographic challenge. In places like the US there has been a lot of advancement in this area so all kinds of competitive data is available. For EU the sources are a little limited (though you still have Insights for Search, Trends for Websites, HitWise, AdPlanner etc). For rest of the world CI data is still quite limited.
I love competitive intelligence analysis because it gives you a different context to your performance. For example your search traffic has grown 5%, great. But it turns our the number of search queries on Bing, Google and Baidu have grown by 500%. Are you still happy with 5%?
The only thing to be aware of is to look at your data in the competitive intelligence tool as well when you compare to your competitors. Then you are looking at apples to apples.
Thank you Avinash for this insightful interview!
Wer mehr über Web Analyse, Marktforschung und Testing – und vor allem die sinnvolle Kombination der Disziplinen – erfahren möchte, dem empfehle ich dringend die Anschaffung eines Exemplars von „Web Analytics 2.0 – The Art of Online Accountability and Science of Customer Centricity„. In diesem Buch schafft Avinash Kaushik die Brücke zwischen ROI und Kundenorientierung, zwischen Usability und Testing wie kein anderer.
Weitere Themen auf dem ConversionSUMMIT am 06.09.2012 sind u.a.:
- Kampf der Kennzahlen in der Praxis: Gibt es Unterschiede zwischen Conversion Rate und Deckungsbeitrag?
- Conversion Optimierung im Alltag: Wie sehen „rund laufende“ Abläufe aus?
- Testing Stolpersteine: Wie umgeht man die typischen Fallen des Testing?
- Konsumpsychologie und Verhaltensökonomik: Was beeinflusst Nutzerverhalten wirklich?
- Conversion Frameworks: Wie lassen sich die besten Testhypothesen entdecken?
- Uplift durch Relaunch: Schritt-für-Schritt Anleitung für Abenteurer
- Der Longtail der Conversion: Kleinigkeiten, die fast jeder übersieht