How to Start Using Customer Behavior Analytics
Setting up customer behavior analytics for your product can give you great insight on how users interact with your brand and where you can start making changes that drive product-led growth.
It’s not so much about tracking these analytics for the sake of getting data alone – but rather being intentional about what problems you’re looking to solve. Are your customer dropping off early on in the user journey, do you have a variety of customers with different use cases for your product you need to cater to, those are all questions you need to start with before you begin looking for what to track.
With that in mind, let’s get started!
The What, How, Who and Why of Customer Behavior Analytics
- What are Customer Behavior Analytics?
- Understanding the ‘How’
- Understanding the ‘Who’
- Examples of How and Who
- Why you Should Invest in Customer Behavior Analytics
- How Userpilot Helps
In case you’re short on time, here’s a quick TLDR!
- Customer behavior analytics help you identify who interacts with your product and how
- How = interactions and behavior through various channels
- Who = segmentation and user personas
- Go beyond your typical sales macro and customize the customer experience based on unique behavior
- More targeted, specific content and interactions drive product-led growth
What are Customer Behavior Analytics?
Customer behavior analytics look at both how and who interacts with your product. It looks through different channels and stages of the customer journey, analyzing both qualitative and quantitative data.
Understanding this allows you to create more specific and targeted customer experiences, making sure you’re able to both expand and drive growth, but also provide the most value to the customer and ensuring they’re successful with your tool.
Understanding the ‘How’ of Customer Behavior Analytics
There isn’t a lack of data you can tap into to gain visibility over customer behavior analytics.
But before you become overly reliant and data-driven, take a step back and ask yourself – what information do you need to track and why?
How is tracking this information useful to you, but useful as well to influence customer interactions further?
This is the difference between being data-driven and data-informed. At the end of the day, it’s all about what problems you are solving with the data at hand.
Some of the typical customer information you can track are:
- Demographics (name, location, role, etc)
- Emails and campaigns they have interacted with previously
- Channel source (how they initially interacted with you)
- Whether or not they have started a trial with you
- Have they previously purchased with you
- Support tickets logged
- Sales questions raised
- Any product or service feedback previously given
- What specific actions they are taking in your app
- Their user persona profile
With this information in hand, you can start forming a profile for your customers that will give you insights on how they behave when they interact with your product. This can help drive everything from retention to growth strategies, help devise new content to create, and even uncover possible new problems your product might help solve.
Understanding the ‘Who’ of Customer Behaviour Analytics
So… how do you actually start working with all this information anyway?
One word: segmentation.
It can get really overwhelming when you have a bunch of data and customers to sort through, so the best thing you can do is start creating pods of information you can work with. Within these pods, look at segmenting users based on their specific outcomes, interactions, and demographic details (where applicable.)
By doing so, you can design growth and retention strategies based on what the customer is trying to achieve and provide them with the resources they need to be successful.
Always start with the outcome first though, both for you and for your customer. Once you understand their outcomes, then you can start drilling down based on things like demographics, sources, and channels.
Put your customer first – figure out who they are, what they are trying to achieve, and only then start looking at how their interactions can be driven through the sales funnel based on their specific customer journey.
Examples of Customer Segments You Can Create Based on the ‘How’ and ‘Why’ of Customer Behavior Analytics
Whenever I create a new customer segment, I always ask myself – what is the outcome of this? Why are we tracking this? What are we hoping to achieve?
If you can’t answer why a segment is created, the likelihood is you don’t need it in the first place.
Defining the ‘Who’
Let’s use a very simple example here – You are traveling to Denver and want to reach out to customers in that location, offer them a visit, and make sure you develop the relationship further.
But how do you choose who will benefit the most from you going there?
Start with your objective/problem to solve: Are you looking to save possible customers at risk, or are you looking to reward customers that are doing well?
Defining the outcome is important, as it’ll narrow down the segment of people you are looking for.
Now take it a step further – would you like to meet with the whole team or just with key users?
The “Who” for this cohort:
- Location: Denver
- Role: Admins
- Outcome: They have been interacting with the brand/product less over time
Defining the ‘How’
If your objective is to make sure you’re visiting customers at risk, how do you define ‘at risk’? This is where your behavior analytics come in handy.
Look at all the possible points of interaction and look at their trend over a period of time.
If their interactions are decreasing and they’re showing negative behavior, this is the cohort you want to focus on.
The “How” for this cohort:
- Change in support tickets
- Decrease in webinar attendances
- Decrease in community discussions
- Decrease in CSM communications
- Decrease in trend of usage in the product
With this very clear understanding of who you want to target, what their issues are, and what you hope out of meeting them, you have a more defined idea of what you can offer these customers to try and prevent that churn.
Why you Should Invest in Customer Behavior Analytics
Tracking customer behavior isn’t enough, you now need to focus on what you do with all of the information.
This is where outcomes help you devise a strategy by mapping the data that you are tracking into actionable insights that help your various teams understand your customer better.
Your strategy should always focus on how to make your customers successful and keeping them engaged with your platform. This in turn will extend the customer’s lifetime value, and drive product-led growth.
Create Actionable Outcomes
Customer behavior analytics can help you enhance interactions that are tailored to specific user journeys. This includes targeted content, onboarding workflows, and product experiences both online and offline that expand on the user’s relationship with your brand.
For example, you know that product manager x came to your website by searching Google on how to create roadmaps. The first thing they should see is content based on their search.
Next you see they’ve joined a webinar, they’ve watched some videos, and they’ve decided to start a trial.
Hubspot offers this functionality actually:
But having this info won’t help you unless you can answer the following questions:
How can you now use that information to cater to their experience?
Don’t send the typical sales email – do better, do more.
Ask them about what their outcome is by building roadmaps, what are they trying to communicate, and what problems they are trying to solve. Get them to their point of success and show how your product will help solve that problem.
Increased customer loyalty, fans of your brand, extension of lifetime value, and of course, driving product-led growth.
Customer Journey Mapping
When you’re looking at creating actionable outcomes it’s also important to consider where in the customer journey you’re targeting these outcomes for.
That is, if your customer is in the acquisition stage – how are you defining what successful interactions are like?
Likewise, if your customer is later down the funnel and has a level of advanced product maturity, what interactions define positive engagement and how can you continue driving growth?
This is where customer journey mapping can come in handy.
Customer journey mapping can provide an in-depth overview on a user’s engagement with your brand over a period of time. By defining what are possible ‘dips’ within that journey, you can supplement those dips with better product experiences that will compensate for that, still ensuring the overall process is a positive one.
Using Experimentation to Drive Growth
Now that you have your customer journey mapped out and you’ve identified which actions users take which drive more growth, you can start identifying possible bottenecks.
Let’s say that you’ve noticed that at the top of the funnel, you’re having issues getting people to start trials with your product.
- Start with a question and focus on the problem at hand and ask yourself – How might you increase trials in your platform in order to start driving growth?
- Then write out your hypothesis: Can we increase signups by removing the need to enter credit card information to start a free trial?
- Set a success metric: Increase sign ups by x% in the next 3 months.
Based on the changes you make to your sign up process, you can then look at customer behavior. Are users more inclined to start a trial now that a credit card is not needed?
If so, what more can you do now to make that trial period more attractive?
Track behavior, devise possible hypotheses based on that behavior, run experiments, and learn from what you’ve seen. Rinse, repeat, keep going!
How Userpilot Helps with Customer Behavior Analytics
As you onboard users onto your platform, you should be asking them why they are there and what they hope to achieve. Ask about their role, ask about their company – in other words, get to know them.
Once you have that information, Userpilot allows you to trigger specific product experiences – from tooltips to interactive walkthroughs – that help your customers find value based on what their immediate needs are.
Now you can start influencing their interactions based on their needs, pushing them to power features and creating a very specific experience for them.
You can track behavior and improve their onboarding by showing more personalized flows and information, preventing them from dropping off the funnel.