Why You Shouldn’t Ignore the Rise of Attention Analytics

Since the rise of digital, marketers have been obsessed with metrics, and it’s certainly true that when it comes to web usage there is no shortage of data available to measure! But which metrics really help marketers make informed business decisions? 

No longer can clicks, unique users or even time on sight be used to conclusively prove that your website is successful and your users are happy. After all, what’s the point of having thousands of unique users if they almost all bounce?  And who cares if your average time spent on site is 30 minutes, if most users have got your blog post or website open in a tab which they never actually go back to?

This is where ‘attention analytics’ come in.

You’ve probably heard that ‘attention analytics’ is now considered by many to be the hottest way to track website activity, in particular by media companies. By measuring smaller details of user behaviour, including which tab the user has open, whether a video is actually playing, and the user’s mouse movements on the page, the website owner is able to get the best possible picture of their user.

So why is attention analytics so useful?

  • Attention analytics can tell you which authors or blog posts are gaining the most traction on your site.
  • The data allows you to determine which on site videos your users love.
  • It also gives you a better picture of what users are not enjoying, or not interacting with.
  • Ultimately, by making changes based on these findings, attention analytics allows you to drastically improve the user experience of your website.

But is attention analytics really all it’s cracked up to be? As BuzzFeed’s Jonah Perretti points out, all metrics can be skewed, even one as advanced as this. This is true to a certain extent, but although no way of measuring website data will ever be perfect, attention analytics is still the most effective metric to understand your user and improve their experience.

Ed Brocklebank (aka Metric Mogul) is an analytics and digital marketing consultant. He helps business of all sizes become more data-driven through measurement, strategy and activation. He works as a Strategic Analytics Director at Jellyfish in London, as well as delivering training on behalf of Google and formerly General Assembly.