I published my first book, The Executive's Guide to Web Site Measurement and Testing because after working as a web analytics practitioner and consultant to Fortune 500 companies, it seemed to me that web site analysis had to be holistic to be successful. You couldn't only talk about web analytics, surveys, usability and so forth separately. You had to coordinate the methodologies to get complete insight. So, in my book, I talk about all of the methodologies and how to use them together. Seemed to make sense, I thought, that an executive would want to know all of this stuff to run a complete web site measurement and testing program.
Thing is though, there just aren't many executives who are doing this. Well, at least I haven't met many. Then again perhaps I don't get out enough.
I guess I was conceptualizing the idea of a Chief Web Site Metrics Officer, or something to that effect. Someone who'd be running analytics, usability testing, surveys, market research, competitive research, web site performance...the whole nine yards.
Now, I know what you're saying...that a CMO could do that, or a Market Research Director could do that...Well, maybe. But how many do you know?
Why bring this up now? Oh, just dangling conversations here and there...that I have with other analytics folks who remember the bad ol' days of the late '90s and how things really don't seem that much different now - same issues, same challenges, different software...or that I had with my colleague, June Dershewitz, about the career paths for experienced analysts - where do they go? what do they do? "they become consultants or join agencies everyone; When will they ever learn, When will they ever learn", or the recent post by Paul Legutko, another Semphonic colleague, on the future of web analytics consulting, and Judah Phillips' post on staffing and Stephane Hamel's post on the marketing-centricity of web analytics.
So, while I think the next logical next step in an organization's maturity is to develop a role like Czar of Web Site Measurement and Testing, I know that if this is to come about, it will take a good bit of business case development, strategic planning, and political will to make it happen.
Interested in this for your organization? I'd love to hear what you're thinking and how you're planning for this. Give me a shout and let's talk about it some time.