Why Should Ecommerce Businesses Stick to Real-Time Analytics?

4 min read

Chances are you understand that your ecommerce website plays a major role in the success of your company.

But do you know what plays the biggest role in the success of your site?

While many factors are at play, real-time analytics show you whether or not those factors are hurting or helping your site. For that reason, it’s easy to argue that this feature could either make or break your business.

What Does Real-Time Mean? 

Real-time describes the actual time at which something happens.

For example, if you’re watching a baseball game in real-time, that means you’re watching it live. You’re watching the pitcher throw the ball as he’s actually doing it.

In other words, you’re not watching it on delay or, simply, later.

When we talk about real-time analytics, we’re talking about those that track and report users’ actions as they happen. At a moment’s notice, you can see how many people visited your site that day and what percentage of them clicked on your lead magnet.

The traditional form of analytics would make you wait until a set date to receive this type of information. Much like watching a delayed game, you don’t receive the data until long after the events are done happening.

5 Ways to Use Real-Time Analytics on Your Ecommerce Site

If you’re not currently making the most of real-time analytics, here are five ways you could improve the results you receive from your ecommerce website.

1. Testing Your Ecommerce Site for Bugs

Here’s a really simple way that real-time analytics can make all the difference for your website.

Debugging your website can be a real chore, but you may not even know it’s necessary, which would be an even greater problem.

Imagine if your site wasn’t tracking any analytics at all or, worse, was doing so erroneously, but you never knew. You could make all kinds of costly mistakes based on this bad information.

If you’re using real-time analytics, you can test to make sure that all of your properties and events are triggering correctly.

2. Ensuring Campaigns Are Targeting the Right People

Did you know that 28% of businesses say their content marketing campaigns were no more successful than they were one year before? 45% would describe their progress as only “somewhat more successful.”

There could be a number of different reasons for this, but an obvious culprit would be that these companies are not paying attention to their analytics. They’re not checking to see whether or not their campaigns are engaging their market or, by the time they do, it’s too late to do anything about it.

This isn’t to say that you can change the entirety of a campaign’s content on the turn of a dime, but you could change which segments of your market see which pieces if you’re tracking its success in real-time.

3. Making Quick Changes to Your Ecommerce Site

Of course, there are countless changes you could make to your site to keep visitors around but only if you’re keeping a close eye on what they’re doing.

Research shows that the first 10 second a visitor spends on your site are crucial for determining whether or not a visitor will stay for 10 more.

Put another way, if you don’t succeed during those first 10 seconds, nothing else matters. Most of your visitors won’t stick around to see all the other hard work you’ve put into creating your ecommerce website.

Imagine not finding out this was a problem until a week or even a month after it started. Think how many visitors you would’ve lost unnecessarily because you weren’t able to start making UX changes or other modifications that would improve those initial 10 seconds.

4. Conducting A/B Tests

Whenever you suspect that a certain improvement may benefit your website A/B testing is important. It allows you to test two options and receive a definitive answer about which is going to produce the best results for your ecommerce site.

Yet only 52% of companies run these tests to check if their landing pages are optimized.

That leaves you with a massive advantage if you conduct A/B testing and use real-time analytics to track the results. This way, the moment you see there’s a clear winner, you can implement the new feature and begin reaping the rewards right away.

5. Leveraging Personalization

75% of consumers are more likely to purchase from companies that utilize personalization.

However, you can only leverage personalization if you’re using real-time analytics to fuel the adaptions your website must make in order to provide customers with this kind of specific experience.

Is There Still a Place for Traditional Analytics?

The simple answer is that, no, you should no longer rely on traditional analytics. While you could derive some benefits for your ecommerce website by doing so, they will pale in comparison to those you would receive from real-time analytics.

Now, that being said, let’s draw upon our earlier example of that baseball game.

Obviously, watching it live is preferable for most people because they want to view the events unfurl as they happen. If you were coaching the team, you’d absolutely want to watch the game live, so you could make decisions that would affect its outcome.

Similarly, you want real-time analytics for your ecommerce site, so you can improve its functioning the moment it becomes necessary to do so.

However, that’s not to say you never want to review historical data. Coaches go back and watch tape constantly for clues about how they can improve.

Choose real-time analytics that store the data they record so you’re able to do the same thing regarding your ecommerce website.

Starting with Real-Time Analytics 

It can be intimidating to make the switch from traditional tools to real-time analytics, but it should now be clear how much you have to gain by doing so. If it helps, try starting out small with your transition. Add one tool at a time, becoming comfortable with each new addition before implementing another.

Before long, you’ll most likely find that you can’t wait to continue improving your site with real-time analytics as the results will speak for themselves.

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