Guide to Website Visitor Tracking & Top 10 Tracking Tools
Updated on 3rd Sept, 2021
Websites have now become the biggest asset for acquiring customers. When visitors come to your website, you get complete control over how you create an amazing customer experience for them.
Every business is now leveraging data to not only qualify leads but also to understand visitor motivation and serve highly relevant content. As a result, website visitor tracking is now a crucial requirement of every data-driven company with an internet presence. Companies use website tracking to understand how visitors interact with various aspects of your website, connect marketing campaigns with conversion and identify strategies that bring the best leads.
Tracking your website helps you take visitors through a predictable sales process while serving highly relevant content.
Website tracking needs can vary across departments in your company:
- It helps marketing teams analyze campaigns, serve relevant content, and qualify leads.
- It helps sales teams understand lead motivation and know when leads are ready for close.
- It helps product teams optimize the user experience and increase retention.
Defining website visitor tracking
Website tracking is the process of tracking not only activities but also the characteristics of visitors from your website. This gives website owners insights into a visitor’s needs, activities, requirements and also provides information on how visitors came to your website and how their geographic profile looks.
The information that you can generate from tracking your visitors is exponential and we will discuss it further in the article.
Tracking needs of B2B vs B2C
While the fundamentals of website tracking are intact, the requirements of B2B businesses vastly differ from that of B2B businesses. B2C businesses need website analytics as a whole in most cases. To explain further, B2C businesses need data at a statistical level. Let’s take an example. Will a B2C company with 100,000 visitors a month be interested in knowing what each visitor is doing? They won’t unless it is for customer support. They however would definitely like to get the data in masses. How many visitors have checked out a particular article? How many of those are from a particular demographic? How many visitors signed up? How many signed-up users purchased a product? These are some of the questions that need to be answered. To sum up, B2C businesses usually need data en masse and on a statistical level.
B2B businesses, on the other hand, not only need statistical data but also need data about individual visitors and leads, and customers that are crucial to the sales and marketing process. B2B leads have way higher ticket value and as such, each qualified lead is individually worked on. We have covered the differences in tracking needs of B2B businesses and B2C businesses in this article.
Data B2B businesses need from website tracking
Now that we have cleared the differences between the tracking needs of B2C and B2B businesses, let us have a closer look at what needs to be tracked.
Activity Tracking: Website tracking directly correlates to activity tracking i.e activities your visitors perform while engaging with your website. This can be page visits, link clicks, button clicks, custom events, visit duration, etc. The data you get depends on the software you use.
Since the tracking data needed by B2B is on lead level, the information connects to both sales and marketing. For example, knowing if a lead has visited particular pages, watched webinars or performed any desired sets of actions helps marketing qualify leads and nurture with targeted content (based on the tracked data) and sales understand lead motivation.
Campaign Tracking: A proper website tracking system also helps you connect your visitors to respective marketing campaigns. Did your visitor come from any particular PPC keyword or ad campaign or did they come from Google Search? You got to know how they came to your website not only for analytical purposes but also for understanding lead interest. If a lead came after searching for a feature keyword, wouldn’t your sales and marketing approach for the lead be related to that feature? This can be automated on any scale.
Lead Acquisition and Tracking: A sales-marketing website tracking system should be able to detect and capture leads from different acquisition channels. So, if a visitor has signed up by filling out a form, the system should be able to capture the lead information and reflect it in the contact. This starts the sales process. In an ideal scenario, the system should be able to capture and track leads from any acquisition channel like forms, live chat, email campaigns, etc. and track them. This can get a little tricky and not all website tracking tools will have this. But fear not. Read on!
Real-time tracking for proactive sales and marketing
Not all website tracking tools provide you data in real-time. Many would claim to while in reality they only update info a few times a day. With delayed tracking, you can only take a reactive approach. Leads visit your website and later you check the data to find out what happened. Proactive marketers on the other hand, leverage data in real-time to automate crucial marketing functionalities.
Real-time tracking opens a plethora of sales and marketing use cases. Here are some examples:
- Qualify leads in real-time and prioritize high-value leads
- Track activity in real-time and serve dynamic content
- Notify sales in real-time when qualified leads perform a desired action
There are endless possibilities. Another big advantage of real-time tracking is that it also tracks your customers as they complete milestones of the customer journey and brings the data to you. You can then flag them for retargeting, push promotional offers in real-time, and fast-track qualified leads.
To know more about the usage of real-time tracking in proactive marketing, please check out this article.
Set up free real-time B2B visitor tracking in 10 minutes
Setting up tracking for your website is not hard, at least not with Salespanel. Our core tracking philosophy is to have a seamless data-driven B2B tracking system between sales and marketing that just works with one tracking code. No additional setups or integrations are required. We have talked about this in detail here: Avoid Getting Locked Into Any Product’s Ecosystem And Create the Best Customer Acquisition System With Pluggable Economics
To start tracking, all you need to do is sign up for Salespanel and insert the tracking code that is provided to you on your website. You can also send the code to your developers if you do not manage it yourself. On WordPress, it can be installed with a few clicks. Tracking starts as soon as the code is installed. Nothing else needs to be done. You can later set up connections with your email marketing tool and CRM or any other software for workflow automation.
If you want to try out tracking with other products, we will recommend some tools and also explain what they are good for later in the article.
Setting up real-time data sync with other sales and marketing applications
Once you set up tracking, your goal should be to use this data and infuse the information into your sales and marketing system. For proactive B2B marketers, tracking is not just for reporting and analytics. Marketers track leads and their data and use it to qualify leads and then transport qualified leads to Sales. Marketing can also set up automated alerts for sales or trigger automated events or workflows when a lead’s data matches a condition. For example, when tracking shows that a lead is product-qualified for an upgrade, an automated email sequence can be sent. Or, based on a visitor’s activities and firmographic characteristics, marketing can show dynamic website content or run highly targeted remarketing. Sales can use tracked data to analyze lead behavior, sales qualify them, and understand their motivation which ultimately helps them close more deals.
Salespanel is a very pluggable software and it can infuse tracked information into any platform. Having a proper tracking system helps you create a closely tightened sales and marketing space to let your team produce better results.
Top website tracking software for 2021
It is important to understand that different website tracking tools can serve several purposes. You may need to use a combination of multiple tools to serve your requirements. For example, the tracking data your sales/marketing needs is not the same as the data your product team needs.
We have already talked about Salespanel in the previous section. To sum everything up, here’s what you get:
– Real-time website tracking for free
– No integration lead capture and tracking from any form, live chat, and email marketing software
– Direct email tracking
– Campaign, UTM parameters, and referrer tracking
– Custom events creation and tracking
– Page view, video view duration tracking
– Lead scoring and segmentation
– Real-time CRM sync (Pipedrive, Salesforce, Hubspot, etc.)
And, much more…
Outfunnel is all about connecting sales and marketing data. Their web tracking functionality is built to work in tandem with CRMs such as Pipedrive, Copper, and HubSpot CRM. You can use Outfunnel’s web tracking to see a feed of your contacts and leads that visit your site and record these web visits in your CRM, along with key data about the web sessions.
With web visits logged in the CRM, your salespeople have the full context of what leads are interested in and can strike when the leads are warmest. You can also make use of Outfunnel’s lead scoring, which takes into account web visits as well as other marketing engagements to calculate automated scores. This makes it easier for salespeople to decide which leads to prioritize.
Google Analytics is undoubtedly the gold standard for visitor tracking and analytics for both B2B and B2C businesses. Remember when we said B2C need data as a whole while B2B businesses need data on an individual level? Well, you still need grouped data for statistics and performance monitoring.
With Google Analytics having over 30 million users in the world, there is no reason for you to not keep Google Analytics for your analytical needs. The data it provides is unmatched on a statistical level and it makes the top of our list of tools to have.
Mixpanel is a product and behavioral analytics tool. When we started the list, we mentioned that different products help different teams while serving the same core functionality. While Mixpanel also helps you track behavior, its purpose is for marketing and product teams to analyze and understand how users are engaging with the website and improve customer experience and conversions.
Hotjar is another website tracking tool that helps you analyze data to understand product engagement. Hotjar provides you features like Heatmap and Session Recording to let you understand where your visitors are clicking and how exactly they are engaging with your website.
This is extremely helpful for analyzing funnel conversions and UI updates. Hotjar has a free plan for you to check out its various features.
VWO is an enterprise A/B testing and conversion optimization tool. The goal of VWO is to help you increase your conversions. So, it helps you optimize your landing pages, lead magnets, and conversion funnels and run tests to get the most conversion possible and thereby increasing the number of leads you capture.
VWO also provides various customer engagement features like surveys and push notifications that truly makes it one of the best conversion improvement platforms in the world.
Kissmetrics provides advanced analytics features for saas and e-commerce businesses. The tracking tool helps businesses dive deeper into user behavior metrics on a greater level than analytics data like bounce rate, or time-on-site would provide. This means that marketers can attribute data to a real person, get a detailed view of individual users across different devices and identify weak spots in the customer’s buying journey. Kissmetrics’s behavioral analytics feature also shines more light on the most valuable product feature by tracking the key characteristics of each user.
SimilarWeb provides a robust digital intelligence tracking that provides insights on your industry, competitors, and customers. You can measure website traffic and key performance indicators such as engagement rates, traffic sources, and rankings. Also, its website rank feature enables you to spy on your competitors, know their category and how they rank globally.
Netfactor’s company surge feature uses a combination of visitor identification with B2B intent data. This means that you can identify anonymous web visitors, how they interact with your web content and pinpoint visitors with high buying intent to improve sales and marketing efforts.
Are you looking for a precise and up-to-date data solution? Clearbit provides fresh and real-time customer data like industry classification, employee count, and even job change updates. This helps you get a bird’s eye view of specific customers and figure out how to personalize marketing messages to these prospects. Clearbit has also launched its website tracking product last month and it is something that can be tried out.
Clearbit’s paid plans can, however, be a bit pricey, with subscriptions starting at over $999 a month (as per reports). But, if you need the most accurate customer data (not talking about tracking data here), Clearbit is one of the best options.
The tracking product or the set of tools you need is unique to your business. In this article, we have covered 5 different website tracking products that you need to use. For an extended list of 10 products, please check out this article.
If you want a very simple solution that can start tracking immediately and provide you sales and marketing-focused data, please check out Salespanel’s free plan. You can also try out Google Analytics if your tracking needs are purely analytical. There are also product marketing and optimization focused tracking tools like VWO, Hotjar, and Mixpanel. Different products serve different purposes and you might need to use a combination of a few to get your desired outcome.
Sell more, understand your customers’ journey for free!
Sales and Marketing teams spend millions of dollars to bring visitors to your website. But do you track your customer’s journey? Do you know who buys and why?
Around 8% of your website traffic will sign up on your lead forms. What happens to the other 92% of your traffic? Can you identify your visiting accounts? Can you engage and retarget your qualified visitors even if they are not identified?