Is Google Analytics Telling You What You Really Need to Know?

Every brand out there is dependent on Google Analytics for its online marketing needs. The basic version of the platform is free of cost – hence it makes sense for small and medium companies to flock around the platform. Google Analytics does give us the channel-wise distribution of incoming traffic, and provides us valuable information about which out of the channels on which campaigns are being run, performs most efficiently. But, does it actually give you insights on what worked and what did not? It merely gives us the traffic information and does not talk about the activities that got people to your page or website.

We recently came across an article by Samuel Scott from Techcrunch who talks about how Google Analytics has ruined marketing for everyone by changing the primary focus of marketing from core strategy to channel traffic.

It does make a lot of sense because strategy is essentially the key to winning more customers and interested visitors. Without focusing on what bits and pieces of strategy is working, there is no point in re-targeting on these platforms. All Google Analytics really does is give us the best performing channels – which is good, but definitely not enough. The tool has changed people’s perception of a good marketing campaign. For instance, a user clicking on an ad could add to the traffic on the channel analytics, but nothing about the act guarantees conversion, and nothing about the act throws insight into what particular activity drove these users to your website.

Here are the main highlights from the article –

  • Google Analytics coaxed people and brands into coming online. At this point, no marketing is considered good marketing unless the online presence is profound. The overall spending on advertisements online has also been increasing. The advertisements on these online platforms are losing their core purpose by forcefully drawing people through direct marketing and “lead nurturing”. The false sense of successful (or un-successful) campaigns on GA has changed the way people today perceive marketing overall.
  • Google Analytics tracks the source and not the cause of traffic. It is true that it is not possible to determine the exact causes of traffic to a website or a page. For instance, what particular activity of a campaign resulted in a source of traffic?
  • Brands online are more focused on using content and material that are more likely to be clicked than are informative or useful. Google Analytics gives direct-response metrics and companies are falsely led to think of these metrics as a measure of success. It has pushed them towards creating content that is more likely to be clicked and viewed than anything else. The quality is therefore compromised many a times.

Samuel Scott’s take on marketing –
integrated marcom workflow
According to him, the key to successful marketing is to create an overall strategy of each of the above promotion mix, create the right messaging, choosing the right online AND offline channels, create marketing content, distribute it to the audience and finally measure the results.
Do let us know your views on the comments section below.
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