Why changes to Google Analytics won’t impact Lead Forensics
As a business, it’s highly likely that you use Google Analytics in the day-to-day running of your organization and management of your website. Why wouldn’t you? After all, it’s free, it’s intuitive, and it provides users with useful information about their website visitors. However, like any tool used in the B2B sales and marketing world, it will often go through changes that impact its users. While Google is typically pretty good at pre-warning users of updates to its products — on 4 February 2020, it rolled out some changes to its popular analytics tool with little to no warning. This saw the removal of the features that enable users to identify the origins of their website visitors, filter traffic and more — changing the way Google Analytics customers use the tool forever.
Service Provider and Network Domain: no longer supported
Let’s start by exploring the changes that have been made. Google Analytics works by tracking websites — so, when a visitor lands on a website that uses the tool, its users can see useful information about what that visitor is looking at and, based on their IP address, where they are from. Previously, Google would display the Service Provider and Network Domain of the visitor — these functions enabled users to filter out internal traffic, identify ‘spam’ traffic and, if the site visitor was searching from their place of work, help users identify the visiting organization. This way, B2B marketers could see when a potential customer was exploring their website. Because of these recent changes, this is no longer the case. Service Provider and Network Domain information is now no longer supported — and an IP address alone is not enough to identify your visitors.
So, why did Google make the change?
Without a detailed announcement from Google itself, it’s hard to predict why this decision was made. Especially since Service Provider and Network domain are not linked to personal data —remember, business IP addresses do not fall under personal data, and therefore are not impacted by GDPR or data compliance regulations. Right now, it’s all speculation — although Google has confirmed thar it isn’t due to a bug, and instead was a deliberate change. The general consensus is that it isn’t great news for the quality of data that the tool provides, or for the businesses that rely on it — especially as it took place with no warning.
What does this mean for the world of B2B website tracking?
Businesses that use Google Analytics to identify their website visitors and filter their website traffic will notice a difference when it comes to using the tool. Similarly, a number of
lead generation tools, website trackers and any other add-ons that rely on Google Analytics’ data will likely be impacted by this sudden change. Due to the lack of notice given by Google, businesses that were unprepared for a change like this, or those that aren’t able to act fast, may feel the strain at this time. Look out for messages and updates from any software you use that relies on the data to ensure you stay in-the-know. Prepare to see changes in the reporting of your traffic, keep an eye on your existing adverts, look out for bot traffic and, if you are using the tool for B2B lead generation, you may have to invest in third party data or consider a new tool to support your process. Why not explore some of the lead generation tools that we love?
And, what does this mean for Lead Forensics?
Lead Forensics isn’t affected by this change for a number of reasons. Our software doesn’t rely on Google Analytics, and we have our very own global leading database of business IP addresses. As a reverse IP tracking tool, Lead Forensics works by tracking your website visitors and using its own database to identify the business exploring your site. Users are notified of the business name in real-time, and provided with access to details of key decision-makers from that organization. Plus, like Google Analytics, Lead Forensics provides detailed website visitor journeys. This gives users everything they need to reach out to the right person, from the right organization, at the right time — as well as enabling them to tailor their approach based on the visitor’s needs.
The right tools are a pivotal part of an effective B2B marketing and sales strategy — so, be sure you are getting the most out of the software you use to support your business. If you’re looking to supercharge your lead generation process, streamline your teams, optimize your website, maximize on marketing activity, and make use of high-quality data, then it’s time to discover Lead Forensics. Our innovative technology has been helping B2B organizations discover leads directly through their website for more than a decade — and our proprietary database is regularly updated, cleansed and verified by our in-house team for increased accuracy. Want to see for yourself? Book your free Lead Forensics demonstration today!