Quick Suggestion For A Poor Team Needing An Early Analytics Stack

I think all too often, startups put off putting in basic tracking capabilities until they feel like they can afford a solution on the level of Adobe Marketing Cloud — or in the medium term HubSpot.

I think if I were just getting started on a project this is the flow I’d use. (It’s actually the flow we’re using on our team’s branded properties right now.)

  1. Install Segment.

I really shouldn’t be so shameless, but if I were going to deploy a tag on an early stage team (say an early website) I wouldn’t want to have to revisit updating my site each time I discovered a new capability I wanted to play with.

You’re likely going to be doing a lot of that in the beginning. It’s a good idea to get started in a way that you’re going to find useful as you go on.

(You could also definitely wrestle with Google tag manager. 9 Clouds has a solid primer going on here.)

2. Integrate The Properties You’re Currently Using

It’s likely that you’ve got a Facebook page, and probably a Twitter account. You should take the opportunity to get signed up at business.facebook.com and follow their directions to setup a pixel. (I like this guide from Pavel Matvienko)

You’ll find that the fine folks at Segment have a number of delightful guides that should work you through updating the settings for each integration — which in the short term will save you from having to make additional changes to your website.

You don’t have to go crazy here, because you’ll find you’re in a plan that’s priced by MTUs, which if you’re finding this advice useful, you’re a ways off from having a big number of.

3. Website? Google Analytics. App? Mixpanel.

In both cases, you should settle pretty near to the free tier — it takes a while to outgrow.

If you want to drill a little deeper, here’s a good introduction to Segment from Francois de Fitte.

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