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June 29, 2012 at 1:26 am
Online Marketing Tags:
Accountability, analytics, Centricity, Customer, Online, Reviews, Science
As with most books, I started by taking a look at a few sample pages of the book before getting deep into it. My first data point was page 248: where Avinash describes elegantly a case study on measuring offline applications using Google Analytics. Exquisite. Than, on page 279 he shows how to analyze video influence on revenues. Amazing.
After leafing through the book for a while I went back to the beginning and I really enjoyed the way Avinahs Kaushik links the content; bringing basic and important concepts and very advanced techniques side by side. The book has a friendly tone, i.e., it feels like walking down the street and talking to a friend. Avinash knows when to soothe the reader and let him know that this might be frustrating or difficult, he does not pretend to give all the answers.
A central theme on Avinash philosophy also in his previous book (Web Analytics: An Hour a Day) is that people will bring change, not tools. So, even though he proposes several techniques for choosing vendors, he puts in in its place: if you don’t have people, you better look for them, no tool will help you. For every $100 you have, you should invest $90 on people and $10 on tools.
This book describes a holistic approach of the Web Analytics field which he defines as “the analysis of qualitative and quantitative data from your website and the competition, to drive a continual improvement of the online experience that your customers, and potential customers have, which translates into your desired outcomes (online and offline).”
The book treats all the aspects that need to be understood in order to have a successful web strategy: clickstream data, testing, Voice of Customer, social, mobile, video, you name it. In addition, you will learn about planning and growing a web analytics career, so if you are serious about your career, this book is for you.
Concluding, ‘Web Analytics 2.0: The Art of Online Accountability and Science of Customer Centricity’ is a landmark on the Web Analytics field and a must buy for anyone looking to grow and succeed in the Internet.
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If you manage a website, run your own online business, or handle the Internet marketing for your business, you really need this book. You might be spending oodles of money on pay per click ads or hiring firms to redesign a site or manage your campaigns – but you’ll want Web Analytics 2.0 to provide you with the foundation you need to make intelligent decisions, to ask the right questions, and make sure you’re taking advantage of every ounce of data you can collect about your site visitors. As the book tells you early on, you’ll want to align your site to increase your revenue, reduce your costs, or improve customer loyalty and satisfaction.One of the best things of this book is that it helps to clarify the heaps of data and reporting you can get from the many available analytics tools. What data should you look at? What are actionable outcomes you want to measure? What are some ways to measure success of your site? I’d go so far as to say that every site designer should read this book – not just analytics or marketing pros. This is because it has some great sections about how you should be testing the impact of site designs and changes. The book also includes a CD and one of the items is a usability checklist that every designer should have. And if you’re interested in a career in analytics, there’s even a chapter at the end dedicated to this – I’m happy in my job, so I didn’t read this section, but he closes out with some ideas and advice on how to find the right people for analytics jobs you may need to fill.It’s difficult to make a book about data interesting – but Avinash Kaushik has definitely done so with this book. I’ve already given a copy of this book to a colleague knowing that he’ll find it valuable.
I own both the Kindle version and the paperback version of this book. I originally bought the Kindle copy thinking there would be some referece to the CD in the back of the book – a handy place where Kindle readers could download or otherwise access the content on the CD. Not so! The publishers decided not to make this available so the ONLY way to get CD content is by purchasing the book.
That said, a web analytics book like this is really a reference book. I personally find it a lot easier to flip the pages and find what I’m looking for. And while the author does do a good job of starting at the novice or “reporting squirrel” level and leading the reader up to the expert or “ninja” level, this is not a work of fiction. You really don’t need to read it start to finish in order.
The content, as others have said, is engaging and highly readable. Even if you have been practicing in this space for awhile, you will still learn much from this book. If you are new to the space, then this book is a requirement!
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