In the intervening decades since visiting a website meant typing in an entire internet address and navigating blindly, online usage has evolved largely into specific hits based on hyperlinks or search engine returns, and coming to rest on what marketers call a “landing page.” That’s a fancy term for one page within a complete website that delivers content a user has specifically sought. Simple enough.
The content on that page will ideally reflect the intent a user holds when he or she decides to visit it. If you’re an ecommerce vendor, it may return a product you’ve advertised somewhere in cyberspace. Still simple enough.
What’s not so simple is digging into the wealth of opportunities that open up when the landing page – or any of your pages – becomes a potential customer’s focus. Advertising strategy is more complex than merely linking a consumer demand with a consumer supply. Though it may be a proximate goal, ideally you will lure a user into your brand as opposed to a single product. Gauging the effectiveness of either your advertising or your web pages’ ability to gain an interested party is something that marketers quantify through “conversation rates,” or the percentage of site visitors who respond to externally located links and either make a purchase, subscribe to the site, or in some other way participate beyond a mere glance.
The natural inclination is to evaluate the conversation rate success based on the strength of the advertisement or source that drove traffic to your landing page(s). And while that strategy is not without utility, some ingénue types have begun to reconsider an opposite approach. Why not tailor site content based on the usage patterns of site visitors after they’ve arrived?
Putting Google Analytics (or a viable alternative) to good use, you can drill down to precise details of what site visitors responded to on the landing page they hit. It will show which pages were accessed following the initial page view. With this information in hand, go forward and figure out what about that page might have caught their eye. Is it an exact science? No. It will take time to make sense of patterns, but with careful study, you may be able to translate quantifiable data into an assessment of which offerings, images, key words, and other components of your website pages are engaging potential customers into an extended visit.
One possibility? You may learn that you’ve misjudged your target audience, either in general or for a particular product. The widget you assumed would lure in baby boomers might just be tempting to Millennials. From a broader perspective, it’s conceivable you’ll discover an entirely different demographic is hot for your business overall. It’s market-testing on a micro scale with a macro outcome.
This back-end method paves the way for demonstrated results fine-tuning the strategy you’ll use to create advertisements, forming a constructive cycle and encouraging you to pay attention to all facets of consumer site usage. It requires insight, analysis, and probably more objective evaluation than you ever thought would be comfortable, but the end result can only be an improved path to generating the sales and consumer action you deserve.