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3 Tips and Tricks to Optimize Your Sitecore Investment

Two platform engineers using these tips and tricks to optimize your Sitecore investment.

Understand the Possibilities of Adapting the Sitecore Platform

Sitecore is a composable digital platform that enables businesses to create lasting connections from content to customers. As often happens with such advanced technology, some enterprises may struggle to maximize the value of their platform. Getting the most out of your instance is important to justify the cost, but also to truly digitally transform your company's marketing, content, and digital experience strategies.

This transformation should optimize your business and allow you to reach your goals in an effective and efficient way. Do not get stuck on development frustrations that are keeping you from turning your challenges into advantages by keeping your platform at top performance with these 3 tips and tricks to optimize your Sitecore investment.  

To gain understanding of the distance you can take your Sitecore investments, take our Digital Reality Check Survey to achieve clarity into your current Sitecore positioning. These tips and tricks can help you optimize your instance once you know where you stand. Top Sitecore Product experts with extensive experience leading digital transformations that maximize Sitecore value for clients across the nation came together for this survey.  

RDA Digital Reality Check Survey

Here are 3 Tips and Tricks to Optimize Your Sitecore Investment 

Whether you are currently investing in a new platform or have had the platform for some time, these tips and tricks will enable you to get the most out of your investment. 

1. Navigating the World of Analytics

Many enterprises continue to struggle to get the "single source of the truth" from their data, resulting in confusion and digital hesitation. Companies can use analytics to make better decisions and position the company for significant growth. While navigating the world of analytics, we identified several types of analytics that tend to be of significant importance: 

  1. North Star and KPIs. A "North Star" metric is the source of truth metric that conveys your expectations to the business. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) evaluate the success of an initiative and enable the team to make smart business decisions.  

  2. Traffic. Overall website traffic is a good indicator of the reach your website has to your ideal customers. Paid website traffic reflects the efforts of any paid search or pay per click (PPC) campaigns you run. Organic website traffic reflects traffic that finds your site through unpaid means such as direct, social, and email.  

  3. Acquisition / Attribution. These metrics analyze the customer touch-points on your buying journey. These help to determine which channels and messages drove the customer to conversion or purchase.

  4. Engagement. Measuring the level of commitment and interaction of your customers and prospects helps your team to make decisions on what kind of marketing activities are resonating with your audience. A good measure of engagement is likes and comments on a social post or average time spent on your blog.

  5. Conversion. These metrics are a reliable source of the close rate of your marketing and business initiatives. If you have a compelling ad, for example, that the customer wants to see more from, then they are likely to fill out a form or make a conversion action like emailing, chatting, or calling.  

  6. Retention and Lifetime Value. Every customer that you have has a customer lifetime value (CLV). This measures their value and satisfaction over time. This will indicate if your customers are satisfied with your work or product or if they eventually move on to a competitor or change solutions.  

  7. Optimization (Personalization and Experimentation). These metrics help the business to enhance or boost the success of your initiatives over time. Chances are the marketing push you put out will not be 100% effective and perfect the first time you run it. A/B testing is a great way to optimize your plans.  

  8. Customer 360. A 360 view of your customer contains all the data around that customer to give you the bigger picture of their journey and decision making process. This will include basic contact information and purchase history as well as all interactions and engagements they have made with your company over time.  

  9. Customer Journey. Once you quantify the success of each stage in the buying journey, you can use that information to assess and improve the customer experience (CX). Making efforts to elevate the CX leads to happier and more loyal customers over time. 
    Customer Value And Impact Sitecore Award

  10. Segmentation. Data segmentation refers to dividing your data set into similar parameters to assess the data metrics that tend to coincide. An example is segmenting your contacts by prospects vs customers.  

  11. Competitive. These metrics provide insight into your business' competitive position. You can review your keywords, domain authority, campaign effectiveness, and ad groups to give you a clear idea of how you compare digitally to your competitors. Having a good pulse on what others are doing in your business niche gives you a good view of the options your potential customers have available to them.  

  12. Exit Value / Abandonment. The last top metric to consider is the exit rate or abandonment rate of your web sessions. Your exit rate differs from your bounce rate because a bounce is when a user only interacts with the page they land on and then leaves without doing anything else, while an exit is counted whenever a user leaves the last page, they were on within your website. A user who exited may have viewed 2 or more pages or committed multiple interactions on those pages before leaving the site. So, all bounces are exits, but not every exit is a bounce. The main difference is whether the exit page is the same as the entrance page. Abandonment commonly refers to when a user begins making a conversion but exits before finishing. Think of putting items in your cart and then not checking out or starting to fill out a form but leaving before they click submit.

To consider if you have the right tools, it is important to consider which of these metrics are important to you, and where you are in the process of seeing the full picture as it relates to the ones that are important to you. 

2. Why Having a “North Star” Metric is Essential

The next way to optimize your Sitecore investment is to define a clear North Star metric for your team. Having a North Star metric is essential whether you oversee the marketing of a specific product, or the whole company and brand. While KPIs are good, a North Star gives your team one umbrella to march under. Your KPIs should then feed into your North Star metric. You know you have a great North Star metric when it: 

  1. Measures customer value

  2. Represents product strategy

  3. Is a leading indicator of revenue

This will guide you and your team to make data-driven decisions that lead to better outcomes. Your North Star measurement will be most predictive of the long-term success of your campaigns. 

Questions to Consider Regarding Personalization

RDA's success with personalization workshops always starts with the customer journey. We then go on to align personalized content and CTAs (Call to Action) to each stage of that journey. As we go into detail about the personalization, we ask these questions for each personalization you produce: 

  1. How do we measure success?

  2. Where should we personalize (channel/touchpoint - email, page)?

  3. What should we personalize (specific content areas)?

  4. Who should we personalize to (rules, segments)?

  5. What content will best achieve our and the user's goals (content strategy)?

  6. What action do we hope our users will take (next best action, CTA)?

To achieve a fully personalized experience, you must first understand where you are and what exactly you need to do to move forward. The last of these tips and tricks to optimize your Sitecore investment should propel you towards the first step of digital transformation: a roadmap.  

Your Trusted Sitecore Platinum Partner

The tips and tricks to optimize your Sitecore investment that you have learned here will be able to help you along your Sitecore journey, but the best way to maximize the value of your instance, is to hire a trusted partner with the experience and resources to take you to new heights. At RDA, we are passionate about helping you embrace your inner technology company. We believe in the power of a data-driven roadmap and are committed to being our clients’ most trusted digital partner. As your digital consultants, we partner with you to elevate your data-driven digital roadmap, aligning the right people and the right tools to create a connected customer experience. RDA will help you trace, track, and trust your data now and in the future. 

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