Digital Analytics: What is it and why is it important?

Customer behavior in the modern age has changed the way that businesses need to approach measurement. Trends driving businesses to change today are:

  • The internet: makes information available to everyone.
  • Mobile devices: connects people around the world 24/7.
  • Cloud computing: provides us with cheap, almost infinite computer power and provides businesses with a way to analyze data like never before.

Making business decisions about what you should be providing for you customer can be overwhelming. Analytics can help with that.

The next series of posts will cover the field of digital analytics. We will look at what the Google Analytics Academy teaches us about this subject. In this post I will be introducing you to the concept of digital analytics.

What is Digital Analytics?

Digital analytics is the analysis of qualitative and quantitative data from your business and the competition to drive a continual improvement of the online experience that your customers and potential customers have which translate to your desired outcomes (both online and offline)

Avinash Kaushik

Let’s look at some of the concepts from this quote.

Quantitative and Qualitative data in digital analytics

Quantitative data are things like your online audience’s size, where your audience is located and people’s behaviour once they are on your website.

In the past, Google Analytics could only track the quantitative data from websites. Now Google Analytics can track:

  • Mobile applications.
  • Cloud connected point of sales systems.
  • CRM (Customer relationship management) Systems.
  • Video game consoles.
  • Home appliances.
  • Any digitally connected device.

Qualitative data tells you why visitors are behaving the way they are. The “why” behind it all can’t be determined by measurement only and therefore you will need to conduct things such as surveys.

Measure the outcomes of your business

A very important step of digital analytics is to determine what your business outcomes or objectives are.You need to have clear objectives. In the online world, there are five common business objectives:

  • Selling products or services (eCommerce site).
  • Collecting user information for sales teams to connect with potential leads (lead generation site).
  • Encourage engagement and frequent visitation (content publishers).
  • Help users find the information they need quickly and at the right time (online informational or support sites).
  • Drive awareness, engagement and loyalty (branding).

Once you have determined your business objectives, you can proceed to to focusing on your conversion rates. There are two key conversions on any website:

  • Macro conversions – Your main business objectives. If for instance on an ecommerce site the products are being bought, then macro conversions have been met.
  • Micro conversions – occur when a customer’s actions show that a customer hasn’t fully reached your main objectives but is coming closer.

When you have defined your business objectives and in turn your conversion rates, you will be able to track your business progress much easier.


Now that you know how important digital analytics can be, we can move on to the process involved in conducting this analysis. In the next post I will look at continual improvement process when it comes to digital analytics.