5 Ways Google Analytics Can Save Financial Marketers Money

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If you think that Google Analytics is only useful for bloggers, internet retailers and e-commerce sites, think again. Google Analytics can help you better target your marketing effects — both on and off the web — and potentially save you thousands of dollars.

By John Siracusa, President & CEO at mOSa eBank Marketing Services

What is Google Analytics?

Getting the up-to-the-minute data you need to grow your business and create an effective website doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. Google Analytics is a free service offered by the search engine giant that generates detailed statistics about your website. It works from a dashboard, and can run instant reports on such things as who’s visiting your site, what site they were on when they clicked to your site and in what country they are located. Plus, if you have online account opening and online mortgage applications on your site, Google Analytics can tell you how many visitors clicked through to take advantage of your offers.

If you’re still not sure whether Google Analytics applies to your bank, here are five specific reports that are useful when working on a new website project for a bank or credit union and how you can use them to grow your business. These aren’t the only reports available from Google. They are just a few good examples to get you thinking about the possibilities. For us here at mOsa eBank Marketing Services, we’ve found these five reports invaluable tools that help us build sites for financial institutions that better communicate their marketing messages and convert web traffic.

Take a few minutes to explore all of the functions Google Analytics has to offer companies, even established retail banks like yours. The time you invest could very likely save your company thousands. If your bank doesn’t have Google Analytics installed on your site, you need to get it as soon as possible. It is free, and you can start gathering data from your site the minute it’s installed. But if it’s not installed, you can’t go back in time and capture that lost data.

( Read More: 50 Essential SEO Terms Financial Marketers Should Know )

Report #1 – Which Browsers Should You Optimize Your Website For?

Report Parameters: Audience » Technology » Browser and Operating System used, compared against Landing Pages as a secondary dimension.

This Google Analytics report tells you what browsers and platforms people are using to reach specific landing pages on your site. This can be helpful when if comes time to redesign your site. Knowing the most popular browsers (such as Firefox, Internet Explorer or Safari) allows you to optimize your layout to look particularly appealing to those customers. This also allows you to keep an eye on how many mobile users are hitting your site — both smart phones and tablet devices.

Report #2 – Do You Need to be More Sensitive to non-English Speakers?

Report Parameters: Audience » Demographics » Language, using City as a secondary dimension.

This report tells you what primary language the people visiting your site speak and in what cities they are located. This can help branch offices near those cities target their marketing efforts in the languages that are most widely-spoken in those areas. For instance, if the area surrounding one of your branch locations has a large Vietnamese population and a good number of those residents are visiting your website, it might make sense to create some marketing material written in Vietnamese to use at that branch.

Report #3 – Are Your Mobile Users Happy?

Report Parameters: Audience » Mobile, using Browser as a secondary dimension.

Another report that can help you with your internet marketing efforts is the mobile overview report. This tells you how many people are visiting your website using a mobile device. Most banks don’t optimize their sites to be appealing and easy-to-use for mobile browsers. This can be a problem. For instance, in many cases, the call to action at the bottom of a web page is too small to be effective when viewed on a mobile device. This report can show you if you audience accesses your site on their iPhone, iPad or BlackBerry, so you can adapt your site accordingly. When you start seeing a number of mobile users pop in and leave after visiting only a page or two, then you know it’s time to retool your site and make it more compatible with mobile devices.

( Read More: 12 Common SEO Mistakes Financial Marketers Make )

Report #4 – How Are People Navigating Your Site?

Report Parameters: Content » In-Page Analytics.

One of the most useful Google Analytics reports, this page tells you on what page your site visitors are entering your website.  With In-Page Analtyics, you can make a visual assessment of how users interact with your web pages. Beginning with your site’s homepage, you see what links users clicked. You can navigate In-Page Analytics the way you navigate your site: click any link on your homepage, and when the new page is loaded, the corresponding data are shown for that page. This helps you answer questions like:

  • Is the layout optimal for what I want users to accomplish on the page?
  • Are my users seeing the content I want them to see?
  • Are my users finding what they’re looking for on the page?
  • Are my calls to action motivating or visible enough?
  • What links are users clicking?

 

For most banks, the vast majority of these visitors will go directly to your online banking page (to view account balances, pay bills, etc.) However, if you see a spike in visitors to your mortgage page or IRA page, you can ramp up your marketing to reflect this demand.

This report also shows what links are being clicked on. This information can be very useful to your marketing team. If your “call to action” buttons aren’t getting the desired response, the team can rewrite the text or alter the placement to see it that improves the click-through rate. The beauty of Google statistics is that they are immediate. You don’t have to wait a week or a month to see if your new program or your program tweaks are working. You can monitor the traffic in real time.

Report #5 – Where Are Visitors From, and What Are They Looking For?

Report Parameters: Audience » Location » City, using Landing Page as a secondary dimension.

This report tells you what city people are located in when they look at specific pages. How can this help your marketing efforts? Say, for example, that the number of people from Edison, New Jersey who viewed your current mortgage rate page shows a sharp increase. You could alert your Edison branch to beef up its mortgage-related marketing and advertising.

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