In this blog post series:
Top 5 New Features for Developers in Kentico CMS 6
Top 5 New Features for Designers in Kentico CMS 6
Top 5 New Features for Content Editors in Kentico CMS 6
Top 5 New Features for Site Administrators in Kentico CMS 6
Top 5 New Features for Internet Marketers in Kentico CMS 6 (this post)
Today we have made it to the last post of the series and will cover what’s new for Internet Marketers. I must admit I am a little behind in finishing this series off, I thought it would be done sooner, but enough with the excuses lets get on with it.
A Whole New Product Line – Kentico EMS
Kentico really spoiled Internet Marketers this time around. Marketing specialists didn’t just get a few updates and fixes with the release of 6.0, that would have been way to easy. Instead Kentico released a whole new product line, Kentico Enterprise Marketing Solution (EMS).
Kentico EMS gives you every feature of the Ultimate edition of Kentico CMS as well as a whole new set of features focused on Internet Marketing such as enhanced Web Analytics, Content Personalization, Lead Scoring, Dashboards, Contact Management, and new Email marketing tools plus much more.
I feel that there are a many important advantage Internet Marketers or Website owners can gain by running Kentico EMS. The product allows Website owners to track their visitors usage and activity, and actually personalize their content or interactions for those visitors in a way that should improve the visitors experience and increase conversions.
Another advantage is that Kentico EMS successfully brings in all internet based marketing activities into one spot, you can manage your content, review your analytics, publish to different social media outlets, and keep your customers engaged with new content alerts via email newsletters all in one single spot. The time of having to have 5 different browser tabs open and remembering 3 different usernames and passwords to look at all that is over. It’s really nice to have to just login to the CMSDesk and get your work done.
Tracking Activities (like the ones in the above screenshot) and being able to react to them is also an advantage that Kentico EMS gives you. For instance the system allows you to see which Landing Pages are being hit, what is being searched for, which forums have the most activity, etc. etc all in real time. EMS also gives you the ability to add custom activities for any “event” that happens on your website.
Now back to my Top 5 features for Internet Marketers.
1. Newsletter Module Upgraded
Kentico customers have long been bemoaning the fact the built in newsletter module in Kentico did not provide great tracking mechanisms to accurately measure the reach of their newsletters. In fact it was the top item over at Kentio’s User Voice page under the Newsletter category.
Now with Kentico 6.0 and Kentico EMS those customers should be pretty happy to discover that much love has been given to the newsletter module.
There are a host of new features that allow for robust tracking of newsletter reach and performance. These include:
Open e-mail tracking – Allows the author of the newsletter to see how many and which subscribers opened the e-mails.
Click-through tracking – Allows the author of the newsletter to see which links in the newsletter were successfully visited.
Bounced-emails – Automatic elimination of invalid e-mail addresses.
Double opt-in - Verification of the new subscriber's e-mail
In my opinion when you add these new features to the original functionality, it puts the newsletter module on par with other third party newsletter services such as Constant Contact.
Below are a few more screen shots on some of the new Newsletter configuration options:
2. Updated Web Analytics UI
Kentico's Web analytics module allows website owners to track and analyze metrics of your website similar to Google Analytics. You can track visits, page views, file downloads, traffic sources and more. The reason I enjoy this feature is that it automatically filters out admin activity from the CMSDesk. Only activity on the live site will be measured and shown in the various reports. The new User Interface for Web Analytics is a welcomed improvement.
Kentico 5.5 R2’s user interface for Web Analytics looked like this (below). It was ok, but nothing special.
The latest version of Kentico greatly improved the Web Analytics UI. Shown below is the new interface. Not only does it look nicer, but it’s much easier to navigate through.
Kentico has also roughly doubled the amount of report types that are available in the Web Analytics module.
3. Campaign and Conversion Management
Kentico’s software has always been able to measure campaign and conversion activity. It follows the traditional approach of appending a special query string value at the end of each URL. Usually in the form of http://www.url.com/?campaign=newsletter
With Kentico 6.0 campaign management benefits from the updated UI that I mention above in the Web Analytics module as well as the fact that they added some new Advanced Campaign Settings.
Two of the new settings, Campaign Impressions and Total Cost may be used to help evaluate the campaign and calculate its overall value. You can use the Campaign impressions to setup your target for the number of impresses you would like to reach, and at the end of the campaign enter in the total cost to determine how well the campaign went.
Like I mentioned above, Conversions also were able to be tracked in previous version of Kentico CMS. Sometimes however, Conversions required a bit of code if you wanted to track a custom activity or special action. Basically the three main conversions that 5.5 R2 tracked were User Registration, Newsletter Subscription, and Shopping Cart Purchases.
Kentico CMS 6.0 better integrates Conversions into almost every part of the system. Now many of the default Web parts and even the default Widgets allow come with built‑in support for conversion tracking. There is a Conversion Tracking set of properties right on most objects that let you set the conversion name and value to track. This is really useful.
4. Multivariate Testing (MVT) and A/B Testing
I’m cheating here a little bit because MVT and A/B Testing are technically features of Kentico EMS and not Kentico CMS. However, they are such an impressive set of features that I could not leave it off of the list.
MVT and A/B allows Content Editors and Internet Marketers to generate more than one version of a page and target each of those page variants at different groups of website visitors. The reason that one might do this is that you can tweak content on a page variant and the measure how well one page variant performs compared to another.
Think of a product landing page. Most product landing pages include an Add to Cart button somewhere. Now if you wanted to test how many people actually click the Add to Cart button when the button is towards the bottom of the product image, or towards the top of the product image, or on the right hand side of the page versus the left hand side of the page, you can with MVT and A/B Testing.
With Kentico EMS you can easily create as many test scenarios as you want, run them for a given time period, and measure each scenario’s success. You can create specific conditions like below for your tests or scenarios.
Clicking on the edit Display Condition button lets you add your own condition via a macro.
And it results in:
5. Contact and Lead Scoring
Another great feature of Kentico EMS is Lead Scoring. When I talked about Tracking Activities above and also tracking conversions above I was setting this feature up. I have basically tried to paint the picture that Kentico now more than ever allows you track every piece of information about your website visitors and what they are doing on your website. You don’t have to guess anymore at who is signing up to be a member, who is subscribing to your newsletter, clicking through a guided tour, or who is downloading what file. It’s all tracked.
Because that information is being stored and related to certain visitors you can now give those visitors a score and track them as leads. Kentico allows you give each activity or conversion a point value and report that score to CMSDesk users. This is a pretty cool way to see who your best visitor is. You can even control how and when the score is generated.
At the end of the day you can create a nice visualization of that score if you wish.
Wow that was quite to the blog post series. I hope you enjoyed it. Remember if you have any other questions or comments about the new features of Kentico CMS 6.0 go ahead and leave a comment on this blog, or contact me directly using the Contact page. Me and my team at BizStream use Kentico CMS 6.0 every day and thoroughly believe that it is one of the best Content Management Systems out there.