Cardinal Path’s response to COVID-19 Cardinal Path is sharing all we know to help marketers during COVID-19.  Learn more.

Every organization wants to be data-driven.

Data provides the insights necessary to drive efficiencies for your business, across your consumer touchpoints. Within the digital ecosystem, starting with the media they are exposed to, to the website they engage with – data at every point along the consumer pathway is critical to gather in a standardized, well-governed, and easy-to-understand way.

Most organizations already know this, so many already have a digital data collection program in place.  But there may come a time when your organization needs to re-launch your digital data collection program– and this could happen for myriad reasons. It could be due to an organizational shift, or a functional change to your technology platform, or a total new site relaunch. And when this happens, and you are readying your organization for a new digital data collection program,  the excitement it generates is palpable. Data that’s realigned with your business needs will be there at the organization’s fingertips. Get ready for greatness!

However, before that greatness can be realized, various pitfalls could stymie the launch and progress of your data collection program. If you are aware of the 5 most common stumbling blocks, you could guard against them, properly guide your planning, and get on the road to success right from the start.

[Watch webinar on-demand: Prepping your organization for a successful implementation]

Ensure you have a reasonable timeline

Launching an implementation of website analytics is not a trivial task; it’s recommended to have ample breathing room to go through the proper steps and not rush the process – from discovery to design and development, and finally, launch.


Align the implementation roll-out properly within your organization

Communicating that a ‘website implementation’ project is being launched should mean different things to different people. Ensure data usage  stakeholders are invited to the table, so their measurement needs are covered during the discovery phase of the project.

For the implementation roll-out, developers will be needed – set that expectation at the beginning of the project and resource to that need. Tag management is only part of the implementation equation; code that pushes the proper data is the other, and developers are needed for that piece.

Ensure your analytics partner has access to the websites, analytics tools, tag management platforms, and any third-party data sources necessary to roll-out your implementation;otherwise, the work could be impeded or further delayed due to lack of access.


Resource various teams appropriately

Bring in a trusted analytics partner to walk you through the project phases and develop the necessary documentation along the way. Deep knowledge of analytics tools and processes is necessary to build an implementation that will provide trusted, reliable data – and that spells project success.

Make sure your external agencies and developers are aligned to the project scope and timeline. As already noted, developers are key to building out your implementation. In addition, your external agencies may need integrations or tags in place to get the data they need  ensure developers are aware and resourced appropriately.

Having an analytics-focused Project Manager to manage the resources and timelines, while shepherding the project through to completion, is a no-brainer! But bring in a counterpoint as wel – an internal analytics champion that will help manage expectations and navigate the waters of communication internally, thereby helping to smooth any project bumps along the way.


Understand interdependencies

Your analytics implementation project roll-out is bound to affect other projects happening across your organization.

Think forward – for example, don’t spend time gathering data collection requirements for a website that might change in two months. Ensure your plan is future-proofed and that you aren’t sinking time into building analytics for something that might get changed or stripped-out in the short-term.

Think media – be sure to be efficient in tag management with not only website analytics but with your media tagging too. The two are intertwined, so be thoughtful about what you need for both teams to meet their data requirements needs.

Think in a phased manner – sometimes when we introduce an analytics implementation project, the internal stakeholder teams are so excited that they want too much data, too quickly. Better to phase your implementation approach and give them priority data first, ensure they are managing and using it, and then continue to enhance your data collection as your organization’s maturity increases.


Expect the unexpected

You never know what could happen. Your trusted developer could leave or a platform issue could delay your roll-out, so be ready to flex to changes as they occur.

If you have any concerns or questions about your website implementation roll-out, Cardinal Path has a proven approach that can help you get there. Change is inevitable. Now let’s make it successful! Come check out our webinar on-demand to learn more about how utilizing data can elevate your marketing success


State of Digital Marketing Analytics

The 2020 State of Digital Marketing Analytics examines the marketing technology that supports the world's most successful enterprises and highlights the challenges and strategies for navigating the new normal..