How can you get more out of the analytics of your application or web service? Our UX Analyst Suvi shares some tips that will help you get started.

After the release of a new or revised version of an app or web service, a tingling wait begins: what do the users think of it, and will they use it the way it was intended? On top of that, when your boss walks in to ask about the benefits of the investment, will you have a response ready?

Web and app analytics offer invaluable information to back up important decisions. In this blog post, I point out why monitoring user statistics and actions are so important – and how you can begin to make the most out of them.

1. Set goals and follow their progress

Even the largest chunk of analytics data is not going to do you any good if it’s difficult to give it any meaning. If the app was downloaded 580 times this month, is it good or bad? This is why utilising analytics must begin by setting goals.

Why does a digital service exist? What does it set out to accomplish? The answer can, for example, be sales or customer service. The performance indicators should then reflect these broader goals, for instance: the sales need to go up 20% or the users should be willing to spend more time with the content.

After this, we need to find the right metrics to see if we are in fact on our way to achieve the goal. To increase sales, one way to approach the problem is to conclude that the service should have more users from certain sources or the number of customers contacting us should be higher. This would then lead us to evaluate the success of our marketing campaigns by the number of new users and contact forms filled. Based on this, we need to monitor how many people enter our service via our campaigns and how many contact forms we receive – and set realistic targets for both.

2. Make decisions based on analytics

When the goals and metrics have been selected, it’s time to utilise a suitable analytics tool and follow the situation via a dashboard that collects the relevant stats into one place. Clear goals, things that lead to meeting them and comparing that to the target levels offers a good view on whether the service works as desired – and an incentive to take action if it doesn’t.

Precise monitoring offers a good foundation to make informed decisions about the next steps of development. If you’re dragging behind your goals, it’s easier to start figuring out which elements need improvements.

Precise monitoring offers a good foundation to make informed decisions about the next steps of development. If you’re dragging behind your goals, it’s easier to start figuring out which elements need improvements. And of course, to prioritise further development of certain features over others.

3. Focus your marketing budget wisely

Without a visible customer path that connects marketing efforts to analytics, it is impossible to tell how many euros we actually get back from our investments to marketing. With analytics, we can define an ideal customer: that may mean, for example, someone who spends several minutes with the app every week and performs meaningful actions such as a call for proposals or a purchase.

With analytics, it becomes possible to estimate how much it makes sense to pay for one customer, ie. to allocate your advertising budget. When you can tell which channels bring the most and right kind of customers, you’ll know where to invest and where to decrease your presence.

Would you like to be more aware of who uses your app or web service, and how? Contact us, and let’s make a plan of your goals and isolate the metrics that matter the most to you. That way, the next time you’re asked about the benefits of investing in the development of your service (or building a new one), you’ll know exactly how to answer!