Online Anthropology: Turning Data into Human Behavior

We define online anthropology as the study of the human beings behind their clicks, expectations, and decisions. Understanding site users is critical to your website and business success. If your website is meeting site visitor expectations, they will further engage. If not, they will leave.

As part of an annual client event that we call the Forum, Digital Strategist Simon Mandel shared the following path toward validating data, making informed decisions, and strategically influencing human behavior within your website.

Technical Analytics Audit

Accurate data that represents the activities of people engaging with your brand is crucial to making informed business decisions. A Technical Analytics Audit is a deep-dive review into an analytics account configuration. Are you confident that the tracking of your website traffic is accurate? Is your site blocking spam bot traffic? Are the account permissions on the site set up correctly? Is the site compliant with privacy consent standards and regulations?

A Technical Analytics Audit reveals any shortcomings within data accuracy, consistency, or usefulness and then provides recommendations for improvement, as well as regulations compliance, moving forward.

Data inaccuracies can be expensive if initiatives are launched with poor targeting and tracking. A technical audit can save hundreds of effort hours by making SEO, PPC, email, and social media campaigns more effective and efficient. Data collection that is out of compliance can, of course, lead to expensive legal issues.

Analytics Setup

Analytics can be set up with confidence after the thorough Technical Analytics Audit has been completed. Web traffic reporting tools like Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager, and Google Search Console help explain how, where, and when visitors navigate through your site.

In setting up analytics, make sure the right team members have access to the right accounts and data to make good, informed decisions. Track ecommerce or lead generation to validate marketing ROI.

Within Google Tag Manager, some of the more important site visitor experience indicators to track include cart clicks, PDF downloads, scroll depth, and form or cart abandonment. Google Tag Manager makes it easier to manage site tracking efforts. With it, admins can easily deploy rule-based tags for conversion tracking, event tracking, re-marketing, third-party tool embed codes, and more. 

Reporting & Strategies

Most companies have website analytics. Too few of them are maximizing opportunities to make consistent, informed decisions that best serve the people who are represented within those analytics.

Analytics dashboards and reports must include the impact of marketing efforts and investment expenses toward business objectives. The report should enable the assessing of ROI and shape future enhancements around the behavior patterns of actual site visitors.

Reporting that has been thoughtfully modelled should answer the following questions:

  • What does our data tell us about our overall site traffic and our target customers?
  • Are users engaged with our site goals and micro-goals?
  • What are the friction spots in our user’s journey from acquisition to conversion?
  • What action items should be prioritized for marketing and development?

Analytics data is the foundation for making responsive website decisions for the people engaging with your business. Be sure to analyze existing website data to identify key performance indicators (KPIs). Whether the KPIs are subscriptions, downloads, sign-ups, sales revenue, or any others, pay close attention to them on a consistent, scheduled basis. The KPI data will affirm areas of success with site visitors as well as spotlight the areas in need of improvement.

Online anthropology is a study of the people who are most important to your business. At, we have been entrusted by many major brands to help them advance online anthropology via analytics, measurement, reporting, and strategy. We would be honored to have the opportunity to help you. Contact us today to get started.

About Author

Rex Paisley Blog Author
Rex Paisley is a Senior Marketing Specialist with With contributions consistently centered around website and digital marketing solutions, he is a career creative professional who has authored, designed, and developed marketing assets across a wide range of industries. A competitive spirit, he enjoys unpacking the success factors behind the many business wins with clients of

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