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Velora Newsletter | Issue 10 |  August, 4th 2011

Hello friend!

This month we talked with Neil Patel about web analytics and the different ways you can use KISSMetrics to make better data-driven decisions.

We've also talked about how web analytics tools have evolved to reveal more information about a brand's online success, instead of continuing to provide raw traffic reports. Thanks to this trend in web analytics, business owners can make more sense of their analytics by using tools that put more weight on real time data, user patterns and conversion funnels. Here's a few interesting insights about this topic:

This Month's Spotlight Interview:

 Neil Patel
Co-Founder of KISSMetrics and Crazy Egg

Neil is a successful entrepreneur, mostly known for creating and building two web analytics tools (Crazy Egg and KISSMetrics) that help online businesses make better decisions about the way they engage and interact with heir customers.

V: KISSMetrics is a product that uses an interesting combination of conversion funnels and focus on the behavior patterns that actual people display while engaging with a brand's website. On top of that, KISSMetrics features a well designed interface user-friendly interface, that makes it easier for businesses to access, analyze and understand web analytics using data visualization techniques. How did you realize this combination can lead to a successful web analytics tool?

Neil: So, we ended up realizing, since we had been in the industry for a couple of years - me and my business partner we have been entrepreneurs for 10 years and we focused mainly on marketing and analytics over those ten years - that people are going to websites and they're showing as visits, page views and all of that kind of data. Now, there's multiple devices: mobile phones, iPads and so on - so the data was very inaccurate. 10 years ago people browsed a website using a computer, now people have multiple computers because they're so affordable, laptops, home computers, office computers, plus they have BlackBerries, iPhones and iPads and so much more. So what we first realized was: we need to be tracking people. That will give a better understanding of who was doing what - so you can make better decisions. That helped us realize with analytics over the year that there's so much data that it's hard for people to actually understand it. So if you break it all down - here's all the data like an Excel sheet - some people will be great at understanding it and figure out what to do next. Another group of people won't know what to do with the sheet of data. So what we ended up doing is we combined data with visualization to help both people who love data and people who need the visualization part - to understand how people are engaging with their website when signing up or purchasing or whatever they would do - and so that way your company can increase the number of customers or your revenue.



V: KISSMetrics is built to memorize who your visitors actually are and what they are doing while browsing the website over time - how is this relevant for an in-depth investigation of your analytics?

Neil: I think it's actually going to be pretty relevant in analyzing the data. If you can understand what a user does before they sign up, you can end up figuring out patterns of those people visiting specific pages or that they learn about X, Y and Z before they purchase or sign up. If you figure out those trends you can then modify and design content to maximize your conversion. That's the best way to do it to compare what users do before versus what they do after and take that data and just combine it. If you just look at someone converting from Google, that's great - but what do they actually do before they ended up converting? If you can understand the user's behavior you can then replicate more of it which is what is really important to tie in anonymous data.



V: So in one of your blog posts you were saying that in SEO good content is king, what about in web analytics - is it safe to say the people visiting your website are king?

Neil: Yeah, you can say that real people are the king in web analytics. And it's more so with web analytics, if you can track people, you get a better understanding of data and that will help you make better decisions. Just like with SEO - if you have good content, hopefully on a long range you rank the highest.

V: Is KISSMetrics a product that mostly web business using SaaS models could mostly benefit from, or is it for everyone?

Neil: It's not going to be for everyone, it's going to be for everyone who monetizes their website in other forms than advertising. It works great for SaaS, e-commerce - anyone who has a conversion point.


V: Would you recommend that businesses use KISSMetrics and CrazyEgg combined? For example, if you want to improve the interface - you would take a look at Crazy Egg heat-maps, but if you want to see how to improve conversion, you look at KISSMetrics reports.

Neil: I would. To go even one step further I would recommend companies to use Google Analytics, KISSMetrics and Crazy Egg. I think you need Google Analytics as well, as it provides different data than KISSMetrics or Crazy Egg provides and Crazy Egg provides different data than KISSMetrics, such as understanding how the user interacts and engages in visual format with the website, so you can modify your design and make it more usable.

V: Another thing that might be interesting for users to know is what's the next big step you are going to take with KISSMetrics?

Neil: The next big thing is that we are going to bring out more reports, we have a conversion report coming out and we have a retention report coming out, which is pretty cool. So we're getting into more things that allow you to dig deeper into an individual person so you can get more data on them. Our overall goal with the system is for you to say "Hey, tell me all the people who engage like Neil and we and out a report and you do things like e-mail them a survey or you can figure out what made them convert versus other users. Or you can say "Hey, show me all the people who have purchased a product but haven't yet installed or used it. And you can get a list of them and you can do something to engage them more, such as send them an e-mail or call them or whatever it may be, this is how you can certainly increase the lifetime value of your customer.

V: Do you think that the rise of social media is increasingly relevant to how you would interpret web analytics? Do you think that social behaviors like sharing provide relevant data for how a brand's presence can be improved in the future and integrate that with web analytics?

Neil: Yes, I do believe that's relevant, but our focus is different, we are carving a niche in analytics. We are not trying to do everything, we are trying to do a few things very well. We are not tracking how popular a brand may be, but I do see that as an up and coming trend in web analytics, and what people are doing now with social analytics.

That was a great interview! Thanks and we'll looking forward to talking with you again!

Recent Client project: NakedPhilly.com

This month we are proud to announce a big update to Nakedphilly.com, a client project we have been building this year. Most recently, we've added a custom illustrated interactive map outlining different neighborhoods in Philadelphia. The map features dynamic popovers that interact with the search filter and allow users to view real estate listings, so that they can find where they may want to live in Philadelphia. Check out the new design and functionality:



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Until next time -
Be Brilliant!

The Velora Studios Team
 
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