Businesses need to keep up with the rest of their industry and the internet is one way to do this. Monitoring internet traffic for their content supplies vital information about their clients likes and dislikes. There are many analytical software programs out there today which can be used legally to collect data. Programs such as Facebook, Google and Soundcloud all provide data collection and analytics.
One interesting form of data collection is called “The Move Heatmap” which comes with broad analytical statistics about consumer mouse patterns and movements - “MouseStats Heatmaps are a great comprehensive solution to collect, process, visualize and understand collective behavior of visitors” (MouseStats, 2015).
The website ‘Alexa’ is one example of data collection being used to help companies. “Our obsession is to empower customers through compelling and actionable insights that drive measurable results for their business” (Alexa Internet, Inc, 2015). Using Alexa to help design websites and products can help determine when, where and how to upload content and publish marketing campaigns.
If you have ever wondered what programs websites are using to collect data “Ghostery Enterprise” is free and can be added by anyone to their internet browser. This software is “…for consumers to help them better understand the kinds of data collected about them and the companies that are collecting that data…” (Ghostery Enterprise, 2015).
Knowing which programs are being used by other companies to collect data gives insight into how they operate. For example visiting a SoundOnSOund webpage Ghostery shows me that they are using google analytics, Google adsense and Doubleclick. Google analytics is used for the analysis of people visiting this site and Google adsense and Doubleclick are monitoring traffic from an advertising standpoint. Meaning that because companies are paying SoundOnSound for advertising space they also wish to know data about internet traffic to the site.
Learning that data collection is happening everywhere is an intrusive and scary thought as well as an important lesson. Remembering to keep your online presence professional at all times is essential, people have the means available to research your name or business, impacting on the way people judge you, this can t result in less work or products sold if seen incompetent. For me this seems as another admin task in running your own business. Creating privacy policies and legal clauses for sales and distribution requires time and legal advice. Nevertheless this will be worthwhile as the information gained from data collection will be invaluable and will hopefully help in getting a leg up on the competition, allowing me to gain more clientele. Without putting time into critical analysis you are really limiting your own and your company’s capabilities.
There are many analytic tools which are easily available nowadays and these tools allow businesses to see what their clients find interesting about their web presence. This gives critical insight into the consumer’s perspective on your product and allows you to tailor your marketing and make it more specific.
Learning that decisions can be made based upon data collection and analysis takes some of the guesswork out, enhancing your company's growth with less risk.
Alexa Internet, Inc. (2015). About us Retrieved from http://www.alexa.com/about
Dena, Christy. (2015, March 1). Week 5: Data, You, and Your Art. Retrieved from https://medium.com/self-directed-practitioners/week-5-data-you-and-your-art-f75add99c56b
Ghostery Enterprise. (2015). Frequently Asked Questions. Retrieved from https://www.ghosteryenterprise.com/faq/
MouseStats. (2015) Mouse Move Heatmaps. Retrieved from https://www.mousestats.com/products/mouse-move-heatmaps
Sound On Sound Ltd. (2015). SoundOnSOund. Retrieved from http://www.soundonsound.com/