More and more people have begun to prefer their smart phones and tablets over desktop computers for accessing the Internet. According to a report by Parks Associates, the number of smart phone users is set to reach 1 billion by 2014. With the world getting ready for such a big change, are you going to be left behind? It is about time you discover what traffic comes to your website or app through smart phones, and understand the behavior of these users.
What other ways are there to understand the data but through analytics? Here are 3 categories of mobile data you want to capture and some methods on how to capture and analyze each one. Note: Be sure to watch the video at the end of this post!
1. Tracking Your Mobile Visitors
The most powerful and useful set of mobile metrics to focus on is volume, demographics and the buying patterns of your audience. Once you know these parameters about your visitors, you can work on optimizing your website accordingly.
Let’s say you have a web app that receives lots of mobile visitors. Would you know how your mobile visitors really convert? If your desktop visitors convert at 5% and your mobile visitors at 2% and you are tracking the data as one big conversion rate, your data would be heavily skewed. However, with the knowledge of your mobile conversion rates, you could now hone in on the mobile version of your site for better performance.
A Simple Example
A good example would be the situation where you want to capture leads rather than trying to sell to your mobile customers directly. The reason for caution in this instance is that your mobile users might be wary of entering their credit card information via the smart phone. In any case, you would want to track mobile visitors correctly, in order to build a solid foundation for your marketing campaign.
You can track your mobile visitors by using Google Analytics. From the Visitors tab, choose “Mobile” and you will begin seeing data on visitors coming from various mobile devices as well as other information like average time spent on a page et al. Remember that Google Analytics will only track visitors from java script supporting browsers. You may employ custom analytic solutions from Flurry or KISSmetrics to track traffic from mobile browsers running on other scripts.
2. Tracking User Behavior In Your Mobile App
Apps provide a more engaging user experience than a mobile website. Being able to take advantage of native APIs available on the device, the options of driving user engagement is limitless (through push notifications, cloud backup options etc). Tracking the usage pattern of your mobile apps can help you determine useful nuggets of information among various demographic groups.
For example, a company that develops mobile gaming apps may track its traffic to find that its prime revenues come from a particular age group. The mobile analytics service Flurry, provides SDKs that mobile developers can use to track usage patterns.
KISSmetrics also offer APIs in various programing languages that can be used to track usage patterns in mobile apps. With KISSmetrics, you add events you want to track. This can be either a person viewing a screen on your app or a person making an In-App purchase.
You can now determine metrics from the events, such as the number of people who triggered an event. You can also compare two events, like the two events in the example above could be used in a conversion rate metric:
Number of in-app purchases divided by number of screen views = Conversion Rate
Armed with this metric you can then tweak the elements of the screen to improve the conversion rate.
Below are some events created and used by Daily Deal, a mobile application for the iPhone.
3. Tracking Your Mobile Marketing Campaigns
Mobile marketing is the next frontier of advertising. Surprisingly, mobile advertising is already about to break the billion dollar mark in 2011. So how does one effectively track their mobile marketing campaigns?
One of the best ways to track your mobile marketing campaign is to set up a mobile website very similar to traditional websites. You can use SMS services in a direct response fashion. In this case, your target audience is urged to text back a code that indicates their interest in your marketing campaign.
Lastly, use various software to create, target and track advertisements across the Internet. This can further accelerate your marketing campaign. Clickatell and Admob provides services for implementing and tracking mobile marketing campaigns.
How To Use KISSmetrics To Track The Usage Of A Mobile App
Ignore Mobile Tracking At Your Own Risk
Mobile computing has come a long way since the bulky Palm Pilots of 1990′s. With $1.2 billion worth of e-Commerce done on a mobile phones in 2009, any company who plans on staying abreast with the times should not overlook the importance of utilizing mobile analytics.