The business of measuring digital activity has come a long way since its early development. It is now technologically advanced enough to provide a vivid picture of what is going on at and around a site as well as what is going on with visitors. The motivational force behind the advancement of digital analytics has been because of the growth of online business and stakeholders looking for more reliable metrics and precise feedback they can use to maximize profit. As a result, 2012 will be an eventful year for the digital analytics industry as it continues to catch up with the growing online ecosystem, which holds a variety of businesses. Below are three key trends to look out for in 2012.
1. Real Time Analytics:
More and more marketers have asked for real time data to react more quickly to what is going on with their web strategy. In 2011, Google launched a beta version of real time analytics and Facebook as well in 2012, which clearly shows they both already are seeing the need for real time tracking and not predictive analysis anymore. Real time analytics will be extremely important going forward for brands that are working on time sensitive campaigns or want to see data on who is on their site currently and how fast certain information is spreading. This is why real time analytics will play an increasingly important role in 2012 and service providers will continue to develop solutions to make it more practical for users.
2. Big Data Analytics:
In 2012, the hot new thing is data, data, and data! Decision makers cannot get enough of it and lately companies are digitizing more information than ever. Fueling this data explosion are over 30 billion pieces of content shared on Facebook per month, 20 billion Internet searches per month, and five billion mobile phones. Big Data is the platform used for transforming all of this data into actionable items for business decision making and companies that are able to put this technology to work are likely to find considerable revenue generating that will differentiate them from competition and drive success into the next decade.
3. Multi-channel Integration:
Onsite and offsite are becoming more entangled in business as customers research, compare, and make purchase decisions on different site channels and at different times. Measuring return only based on the last click gives an incomplete picture and potentially misses key insights about how customers are reached. For 2012, we are already seeing integration of onsite metrics with offsite metrics and Google Analytics recently released Multi-channel Funnels as a feature to let users look at interactions across different digital media and show how these channels work together to create sales. Consequently, the best business strategies going forward will be those that can take advantage of this interplay between different site channels, which will allow for better understanding and targeting of customers and potential users.