Digital Marketing Report Templates for Traditional Marketers

Published March 4, 2015
Traditional marketers have spent years purchasing billboard space and TV spots. They’ve become experts in traditional media buying and direct mail. They’ve been trained to care about how many individuals see their brand messaging and how much revenue traditional efforts have the potential to drive. But, increasingly, even the most traditional marketers are looking to the web to keep their business relevant to a modern audience. They want to use the web to reach customers across touch points, and to benefit from the attribution data that digital marketing provides.
However, these marketers are often new to the world of promoting their business on the web. They’re unfamiliar with online metrics and they need help deciphering what matters and what doesn’t. This is where you, that data expert, can help them. You’ll need to balance showing them the right data without overwhelming them by showing too much data. Building a report in a platform like Megalytic allows you to select just the metrics you need.

Blog Image Marketing Report


Showing Users & Sessions

Marketers accustomed to buying billboards and TV commercials often think in terms of impressions: how many people will drive by a billboard or view a particular channel at a certain time. On a website, impressions can best translate into Sessions, how many times a website was visited; and Users, how many individuals came to a website. Every digital marketing report should include a basic breakdown of Sessions and Users over a timeframe.

However, don’t just present total Sessions. Put the metric into perspective to help the reader understand whether the results are good or bad. By comparing to a previous period, marketers can see if numbers have increased or decreased, and whether they’re trending up or down.

Megalytic’s new KPI widgets allow you to show data for Sessions and Users, as well as to compare to last month’s and last year’s numbers all in one place. To add this widget to your report, choose “Add Widget” and search for “kpi” to filter the list. For this report, we’ll select the Multi KPI widget which allows you to display results for up to four metrics in a single row.


Megalytic Selecting KPI Widgets


Once we’ve added this widget, we’ll change the default Weekly timeframe to Monthly in order to look at a larger period of time. To do this, we click the date range shown above the widget and, in the box that appears, use the Period dropdown to select “Monthly.”


Megalytic Selecting Monthly Data


Now, we can apply the new date range. We also would like to customize which metrics are displayed by the widget. To do this, we select the gear at the top left of the widget.


Megalytic Metric Selection


Scrolling down within the box that appears, we find a “Metric” dropdown. We’ll use this to ensure the four metrics displayed are Users, Sessions, Avg. Session Duration and Pages/Session. By default, the first three are included in the widget, so we simply need to add Pages/Session. Upon selecting “Apply Selection,” we see the final KPI widget.


Megalytic Multi-KPI Widget


The first two columns in this widget show Users and Sessions for January 2015, comparing totals to the previous month, as well as the same period in the previous year. From this data, we see that both users and sessions have increased from December, likely due to a dip in traffic around the holidays, but are down from 2014 at the same time. This knowledge allows marketers to put the data into perspective, seeing that the website is showing a dip in traffic from the previous year.

Focusing on More Than Users & Sessions

Often, marketers stuck in a traditional mindset can get caught up on looking at one single metric. As a marketing professional, you should encourage looking beyond just one statistic. Instead of just focusing on the fact that sessions have dipped from last year, include other metrics that measure the quality of the traffic.

In this case, we’ve included metrics for Average Session Duration and Pages/Session in the widget. These numbers have improved both from the previous month and from the same time in the previous year, showing that while there may be fewer people visiting the site, they are spending more time on the site and looking at more pages.

Clients who are new to web metrics may need help understanding what many of these metrics such as Average Session Duration mean. Add a Notes widget to offer commentary defining the metrics for your readers and explaining the significance of changes from the previous month and year to the website in question.

Beyond showing Sessions, Users and engagement metrics such as Average Session Duration and Pages/Session, if possible, also report on data that relates more directly to the business’s bottom line. For example, report on metrics directly related to lead generation and revenue.

Reporting on Bottom Line Results

Traditional marketers, like all marketers, ultimately care about seeing return on investment. If a particular campaign or marketing channel is not helping to drive revenue or other measurable results, they’ll want to cut back and invest elsewhere. However, most traditional venues for advertising contain limited ability to attribute leads and sales to a specific source. Often when people discover the higher level of attribution available on the web, they see the value of investing more where they can better track performance.

To track performance, you’ll need to measure goal completions or track eCommerce revenue. Lead-generation focused businesses, which have historically relied heavily on traditional marketing, like to optimize marketing efforts to produce the maximum number qualified leads possible. On a website, these leads are likely to come through a contact form that can be measured by setting up goal tracking in Google Analytics.

Any digital marketing report for a lead-generation business should show statistics for the goal completions that directly relate to measuring leads. In Megalytic, there are a variety of Conversion widgets that allow you to select goals and can be used for this reporting.

For this example, we’ll use the Conversion by Channel widget to show how channels such as search and social media contributed to goal completions., After adding the widget, we’ll set the date range for the past month, comparing to the previous month, and click the gear symbol to open settings.


Megalytic Choose Goal


In the box that appears, we’ll then use the Goal dropdown to choose a specific goal to show. For this business, which offers fitness classes, we’ll choose a goal that represents a request to join a class. After selecting the goals and closing the widget editor, we see the final widget.


Megalytic Table Graph Showing Conversions by Channel


As you can see in this table, there was a significant increase in conversions (40 vs 14) from December to January. The breakdown by Channel also shows the reader where this increase came from. In this case, the rise resulted primarily from Organic Search, which more than doubled the conversions from the last month. Direct traffic also contributed to significantly more conversions.

This data lines up with additional advertising done by the client in January. This business, a local fitness studio, ran a Groupon offer, resulting in increased awareness with more people searching for the brand and accessing the site. In addition, January tends to be a time when more people are likely to be researching a place to work out to keep their health-inspired New Year’s resolutions.


To create a digital marketing report for traditional marketers, start by using metrics such as Sessions and Users that are analogous to the familiar concepts of impressions and audience. In addition, focus on goal conversion and Ecommerce metrics that can relate digital marketing efforts directly to the bottom line. As someone more familiar with the digital field, you should guide them to better understand what tracking is available for digital marketing and what metrics they should be looking at. Avoid simply handing them a report full of numbers and expecting them to understand immediately. Add notes to your reports to explain the data and take the time to review the reports and answer any questions they may have.


When the client first came to you, you talked up the value of Google Analytics. You emphasized the importance of seeing where your traffic was coming from. You went on and on about how Google Analytics can show traffic sources to pinpoint whether people came from search, social media or a specific site referral, and how valuable this data was. You sold them on it, so much so that your client looked forward to receiving that first report, the magical day when they would finally understand where visitors were coming from.
But then the report came, and it looked like this:



It showed that 10% of your client’s traffic came from “(direct)/(none)”. What does this label mean? How do you explain Direct traffic to your client? Better yet, how do you explain “none”?
Let’s take a closer look at understanding Direct traffic in Google Analytics and how we can address it with clients.
Digital marketers spend a lot of time focused on PPC and SEO campaigns in order to drive desirable traffic to a website. The phrases we’re ranking for and bidding on get meticulous attention, so much so that we often forget about some of the other ways that visitors find us.

We put a tremendous amount of the effort we put into reviewing organic search data and PPC campaign performance in analytics. But how closely do we monitor referral reports?

If that’s not a channel you review regularly, you may be missing out on seeing traffic that is coming directly from links you’ve obtained around the web, local business listings, news mentions, and more. Many times, links are only considered as a means to an end, a metric that Google uses in determining how to rank sites in the SERPs (search engine results pages). But the fact is, many of a site’s links may be directly contributing to its traffic.

In this article, we’ll review how to look at referral reports in Google Analytics, and some of the many ways to use that data to better inform your web marketing decisions.


Remember how your mom told you not to stand too close to the television because it might hurt your eyes?

The same rules can apply to data. If you’re too close, you may miss the patterns and trends that are crucial to understanding your website’s performance. You can’t judge a site’s performance looking at data in the bubble of a single day, you must consider any day’s traffic compared to the days before and after.

Google Analytics makes it fairly easy to analyze trends over long periods of time. But it also allows you to stand right in front of that TV, to look at more granular levels of time, right down to the hour.
There’s a better way to get that close to the data, without burning your retinas. We’ll cover how to analyze traffic effectively in today’s post.