London, 21 July 2016

The growing volume of data means that digital reporting and analysis is more crucial than ever in ensuring businesses take full advantage of the data at their fingertips. However, less than half of organisations agree that they have executive sponsorship of digital measurement and analytics, according to research published today by Econsultancy in partnership with analytics consultancy Lynchpin.

The Measurement and Analytics Report 2016, based on a survey of almost 1,000 digital business professionals, focuses on the digital analytics sector and looks at how organisations are using data strategically and tactically to generate insights and to improve business performance.

The research found that executive sponsorship has a marked impact on an organisation’s approach to measurement and analytics: organisations without executive sponsorship are 29 percentage points less likely to have a formally documented data analytics strategy. With six in ten companies (62%) not having a strategy in place, it’s clear that having executive will at the top to champion the integration of analytics is essential.

Less than a fifth (18%) of those surveyed have analytics strategies which straddle both the digital and non-digital worlds. While 77% believe digital analytics to be important to their company’s digital transformation, fewer than one in five consider digital reporting to have a ‘very influential’ role in supporting business decisions.

The vast majority (84%) of marketers agree that their understanding of the customer is increasing over time, and 64% saying that they are using data-driven customer insights to adapt their marketing strategies and influence business decisions.

However, there has been a significant drop, from 40% in 2015 to 33% this year, in the proportion of responding companies who say that more than half of their collated analytics data is useful for decision-making. This trend is likely to be influenced by the growing volumes of available data rather than an indication that companies are losing interest in mining their data.

Econsultancy Research Director, Jim Clark, said: “The focus of progressive companies today is not to gather as much as possible but cherry-pick the most useful data. But to ensure this can happen, the right processes need to be in place first to embed digital analytics into corporate culture – from executive sponsorship to having the right tools and skills. Only then can data-driven strategies have a real impact on customer experience and ultimately the bottom line.”

Lynchpin Managing Director, Andrew Hood, said: “Organisations rightly see being data-driven as key to competitive advantage or even survival in crowded markets. This research highlights two of the critical gaps that successful businesses are bridging to make that a reality: clear buy-in from the top to drive longer term analytics strategies and the right mix of technology and skills to deliver on that promise. For companies without that executive sponsorship, there’s a risk that initiatives to personalise and optimise the customer experience are left floundering without the vital fuel of good data and the direction of robust insight.”

Other findings from the report include:

-) When asked about the types of data used to help meet business goals, 73% of companies say they use cost (e.g. marketing spend), contrasting with what could be considered more ‘intricate’ data types such as clickstream (i.e. website interactions, used by 67% of marketers) and CRM (used by 61%).

-) Use of cloud-based big data tools has increased this year (62%, up by 17 percentage points). This has been accompanied by a similar rate of decline for companies managing processes on their own hardware.

-) There is an evident shift from increased investment in technology and staff to increased investment in consulting and services in 2016. Almost half of respondents are planning to increase investment in the latter, compared with 36% in internal staff (down from 50% last year).

-) When asked about specific types of analytics skills that are in high demand, 77% ranked ‘producing reports’, followed by ‘using digital analytics tools’ (70%).

-) Two-thirds (68%) of company respondents have mapped out a data layer for their tag management system. In 2015, this figure was only 46%.

-) Just over half of companies are either ‘unsure’ or ‘not confident at all’ that their attribution model is based on facts about data and the business.

Get this report:

The full report is available on the Econsultancy website here:
https://econsultancy.com/reports/measurement-and-analytics-report-2016

The report is available to Econsultancy subscribers.

For more information about this report, contact:

Jim Clark, Research Director, Econsultancy
Jim.Clark AT econsultancy.com
+44 (0) 207 269 1450

About Econsultancy

Econsultancy’s mission is to help its customers achieve excellence in digital business, marketing and ecommerce through research, training and events.

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About Lynchpin

Established in 2005, Lynchpin is a full service analytics consultancy. Consultants, analysts and engineers work together on data projects to give a responsive, cohesive and advanced service.

Understanding customer behaviour is crucial to growing your business. Lynchpin elegantly extract, integrate and interpret data, giving our clients clarity to make the best decisions for their business.

From statistical modelling to optimisation, our independent team of analysts, consultants and engineers work in harmony to create and refine bespoke strategies to improve your bottom line.
Our approach to technology implementation comes from an impeccable understanding of the available options on the market. Our advice is unbiased and we endeavour to create a cost effective and scalable solution. We select the right tools for the task and ensure they are effectively deployed.

With extensive expertise across sectors, dealing with unique requirements and company cultures, we pride ourselves in being candid, approachable and supportive. We are happy to work alongside your in-house team to get the best from reporting tools.

Lynchpin works with Experian, Canon, HSBC, MTV, Tesco Bank, Dyson, New Scientist, Waitrose and the Government Digital Service amongst others.

Please visit our website www.lynchpin.com to find out more, or contact us on 0345 838 1136.

Published on: 2:44PM on 21st July 2016