Comment: Clear thinking will help to focus your web strategy

The first annual Emetrics Summit in London is over and I don't think I've experienced such a grand epiphany since my brother told me how babies are made. I know this subject pretty well. I lecture about it all over the world and I've written a book on the subject. But I agree with the majority of the delegates whose most common reaction was: "I think my head is about to explode." So here's the cream of the crop with no attempt to plumb the depths of shared knowledge.

- The Missing Link - Terry Lund of Terry Lund Consulting said it best: "Marketing thinks IT will provide meaningful reports instead of just data, and IT thinks marketing will analyse the data themselves." We desperately need more people who like crunching numbers.

- Boiling the Ocean - Lund started it with his statement: "Do a little and learn a lot. Then do a little more and grow the results over time." Everybody else who took the stage agreed that this is a meal best eaten in small bites.

- Rudderless Site - The most difficult thing about measuring the success of your web site is agreeing on its purpose. Richard Foan, managing director of the ABCe, said that his organisation has been working for eight years to create and ratify standard definitions for online advertising. Key Performance Indicators seemed to be the concept for the week, but we're all at a loss of nailing them down.

- The People Who Almost Buy Are Most Interesting - There's no point altering the behaviour of those who already want to purchase. It's the others you need to persuade. Knowing the difference can have a huge impact on your bottom line.

- Budgets Are Unequal to Value - Everybody nodded and groaned when Georgie Canfield of Argos lamented that online customer experience has significantly more impact, yet is woefully under-funded by comparison to other customer touchpoints. She also won the "Best PowerPoint Slide" award for her Web Analytics Project Emotion Chart depicting the mood swings during the course of a project.

- Segment, Segment, Segment - Different people come to your site for different reasons. Peter Nolan from William Hill deals in visitor segments according to perceived intent to boost results.

There were many anecdotes and learning moments, but I'm still collecting. If you've got a web analytics project that's producing results, tell people about it.


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