Many companies are new to digital analytics; this is why they need an analyst to begin with. Because of this, it’s not hard for someone who knows a little bit about digital analytics to present themselves as an expert just by using the right vocabulary.
If you’ve realized that your company will benefit from the services of a digital analytics consultant, but you’re not sure where to start, it will be easier to find a qualified analyst if you know the right questions to ask. Here are the first steps toward finding an analytics person that can help your company reach digital success.
Can you give an example of an outcome directly related to an insight that you provided?
This point of this question is to understand a candidate’s analysis capabilities and, more importantly, whether they have actual experience with analysis. Many self-proclaimed analysts can provide well-phrased examples of the ways that digital analytics could help you succeed, but you want to hear how they have actually used the tools themselves. After all, you’re looking for insights that will help your company specifically and they should have experience finding them.
Can you explain an implementation challenge you faced and how you overcame it?
Even if you have capable web developers to handle implementation tasks, it is important that your digital analytics consultant have at least a basic understanding of the ins and outs of implementation. If you don’t have developers on staff, then you definitely want your consultant to know more than basic tag placement in the site footer.
If my company has no experience with web analytics, what would your strategy be to start?
It is very important that your consultant have a clear end-to-end strategy. This strategy should include starting with specific business goals that will determine success metrics. A continuous improvement process would then be used to affect these metrics appropriately. Digital analytics need processes that ensure that reporting is not random. There may always be a need for ad-hoc reporting, but a clear method will provide the best results.
What are common errors that you have discovered during QA testing (Quality Assurance)?
What web analytics tools have you used?
Your web analyst should have experience with Google Analytics, even if it is just on their own site. Google Analytics is the common denominator among web analysts. But a truly qualified analyst should also be intimately familiar with at least one other platform. If they are certified by a web analytics vendor such as Omniture, that’s even better. Beyond this, they should also be familiar with tag management with one of the more widely used platforms, like Google Tag Manager (GTM), Adobe Dynamic Tag Manager (DTM) or Tealium.
With these questions, you will understand your potential digital analytics consultant’s breadth of analysis, technical skill, strategy, QA and tools. Once you’re past these items, you can begin to dig deeper to find a candidate that will be a good fit for your company’s needs and environment.