Chapter 02

Why Do You Collect Data, Anyway?

By Anna Tomalik

Whether you are an experienced web analyst or a beginner in this topic, it’s worth asking yourself a fundamental question: Why do I do what I do? In other words, why do I collect data?

Answering this question will put you in the right mindset for the whole analytics process. It’ll serve you as a compass, showing the right direction when looking at data. Because once you dive into big data, it’s easy to lose yourself in numbers, metrics, dimensions, graphs, and pie charts.

In our company, we collect data and analyze it because we care for people who come to our site. We understand that if they bothered to come, it means they are looking for something. They want to find a solution to a problem they have or inspiration for their work. Through analyzing how they interact with our site we learn if they are finding what they are looking for, or not.

Without data we are blind. We know nothing about people visiting us. Nothing about the usability of our site, forms, page paths, and content. And nothing about other websites, blogs, or social media that lead people to us.

Clear Bank example

To help you better understand analytics and our tool, we’ll use a made-up example of a bank, nicknamed Clear Bank. Clear Bank is a mobile-only bank with checking and savings accounts built to help people easily manage money. It offers a no-fee account, Visa debit card, banking app, and kind customer service.

So, Clear Bank can collect and analyze data to understand if people who visit their website get the right information to decide to open an account. They can use analytics to find out if the signup process is clear, or if people are reaching customer service easily. Besides that, Clear Bank can collect and analyze data from their app, both website and mobile, and understand how customers interact with the tool.

All that information can then serve to create better messages on the website, improve the signup process, fix navigation to customer service, and make a more useful app.