After Omniture Summit

The Omniture Summit ended on Thursday night with a grand reception for the conference goers. Omniture went all out with the highlight of the nightly shingdig’s being the Maroon 5 concert at the Grand America Hotel on Wednesday night. I’m not a Marron 5 fan, but it was still a great time and completely ridiculous that I was about 20 feet away from the band.

This was my first year at the summit and it was completely worth every penny. I learned so much, mostly in the Omniture University course I took last Monday.

Other than learning about classifications, VISTA rules, and advanced campaign strategies at the Omniture University course, I went to sessions on advanced use of SiteCatalyst, tracking Web 2.0 technologies, and video tracking.

I’ve always said that the one reason web analytics hasn’t made it into the higher ed community at the rate it should is that it has always been considered a *marketing* function – something that those marketers do and we as admissions, help desk, library, whatever, don’t have time or the need to pay attention to.
This couldn’t be more wrong.

If you own or have anything to do with a website, whether you like it or not, you are a marketer. Do you want your users  do something on your website? Then you’re a marketer. Plain and simple.

At the Omniture Summit, most of the sessions were geared toward e-commerce sites. At first, I was a bit frustrated at their focus on them, but then I got thinking – this is still very much relevant to us. Why? Because, again, we have goals on our site and we want users to do something (download a request information form, sign up for a course, apply for a degree). Why can’t this be like buying a widget? No, users don’t go through a check out process per se, but  they do go through a *process* of some sort.

That “every site is a customer service website” mentality came back to my mind. This is what we need to keep in mind. The conversion from visitor-to-widgit buyer may not make sense to us, but the conversion from click-to-visitor-to-prospect or visitor-to-applicant does.

It’s the same exact thing and we track it in almost the same way.

At the summit we talked about goals and key performance indicators – something every website should and *needs* to have to be successful, regardless of the type of website.

We talked about conversions – something we all should be tracking regardless of how our *conversion* is defined.

There were many tactical things I learned at the summit as I stated at the beginning of this post, but my biggest takeaway is this: when it comes to websites, everything is connected. Offisite mentions, onsite processes, search engine optimization, usability, relevant content – it all fits together. Anlaytics is how we know it’s working or not working and how we prioritize tasks and projects to fix issues. It’s how we know where to put our money and resources.

2 Responses to “After Omniture Summit”

  1. Brendan says:

    Shelby, thanks for posting. Couldn’t agree more with your big takeaway.

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