Hover Tracking in Google Tag Manager (and Google Analytics)

Want to see where people are focusing attention but not clicking? Or where they’re focusing attention but there isn’t a link available? This nifty bit of code can tell you what elements of your page users are hovering their curser over. From the good people at Luna Metrics the listener keys off any CSS selectors so you can track any selector on the page. Another useful piece of information that on-hover tests can reveal is if users are being distracted from the primary goal. If a user is hovering and potentially focusing on a secondary element to the primary goal you might want to look at changing those secondary elements so they’re not as distracting.

Evolving App Store Business Models

David Smith looks at how his app business has changed over the four years he’s been tracking data and the eight years the Apple App Store has existed. Has it only/has it already been eight years! I enjoy reading these retrospectives because, well I might be getting to the age where I have enough experience that I enjoy reflecting on things I remember, but I also enjoy reading them because they can provide some insight on where we’re headed. When apps first started out we all thought people would buy our apps like they did video games and CDs. As David points out, that didn’t prove to be true, and eventually we moved to the newspaper revenue model, advertising. As users spend 90% of their time in three app categories, email, messaging and preferred social network, the advertising models will stop working as a sustainable revenue model. This brings us to the part of David’s business that’s always been there and has remained relatively consistent over time, the in-app purchase. As the advertising dollars become less sustainable will the in-app purchase model become the third business model in the app store evolution?

Dashboard Best Practices

We’ve all had it happen, you create an analytics dashboard and share it with your team, only to find no one is using it and still making the same data requests that you include in the dashboard. This article from Charlotte Bourne at Cardinal Path looks at why users are no longer using your dashboard and what you can do to create a loyal following. Common abandonment reasons include the dashboard no longer works after a site change, the analytics platform was not advanced enough, it wasn’t user friendly and the dashboard is too much work to maintain. One of the most valued pieces of advice on how to solve these issues is spending the required amount of time defining and debating the KPIs that are going into the dashboard. Make sure the KPIs are relevant, actionable and outcome based. Just because a KPI is an ‘industry standard’ doesn’t mean it’s the right one for you. Also, we iterate on our code and we should iterate on our analytics dashboards. There’s always something you can tweak to make it better.

Advanced Personalization Implementations

Site personalization is something that has interested me for as long as it’s been around, everything from how to not make it creepy to how to actually implement it. Digging in the archives this article from Charlotte Bourne at Cardinal Path talks about three different types of personalization and tactics on how you can implement them. First up is cognitive personalization which uses a persons personal traits to deliver specific content. She discusses the Big 5 Traits that IBM use as well as intergrating Adobe and Twitter to build your cognitive profile. Another option is Account Based Personalization, this is outlined as a B2B play where rather than targeting individuals you target businesses. Using the visitors IP address personalized content and targeted messages are built based on attributes of the users business. An account of this option is outlined here from Citrix. The last option is Personalization for the Internet of Things. This option provides the ability to not only personalize content, like the fridge telling you the milk is empty and offering a coupon, but also information based on previous habits, such as the coffee maker learning you usually set it for 6am and it hasn’t been set for tomorrow morning.