Web Analytics For Dummies
Performing a website analysis doesn't have to be grueling and time-intensive. You can summarize your website's overall performance quickly — if you know what to look for. Free and low-cost web analytics tools can help you measure your website's success, and you can generate site referrers in a host of ways that may not have occurred to you.
9 Ways to Quickly Summarize Your Website's Performance
You don't need to spend hours poring over your website's web analytics report to get some big news. Here are a few ways to quickly analyze your website.
View your Site Summary. Glancing at this report will give you a quick overview of unique visitors, number of visits, average visitors per visitor, number of pages viewed, and other pertinent data.
Review your Monthly History report. You can compare your unique visitors this month to last month or six months ago or the same month form a year ago.
Examine Days of Month report. This will tell you which days brought you the most traffic. Was that special promotion you launched last week effective?
Review your Robots/Spider Visitors report. Are Googlebot and MSNBot crawling over your pages? If not, you may need to go register with them.
View your Visits Duration report. Are most visitors leaving within 30 seconds? It may be time to revamp your website.
Check out your Top Pages report. What pages are visitor favorites? Now try to figure out why.
View your Site Referrer report. Where is your traffic coming from?
View your Keywords and Keyphrases report. Which words are working for you?
View your HTTP Error Codes report. Are there problems on your site you need to fix?
A Web Analytics-Driven Website Checklist
A website that's fine tuned for web analytics should accomplish a few things, including persuading site visitors to linger on your site and convert visitors into customers. Ask yourself the following questions when critiquing your website.
Are my most popular pages designed to convert visitors into customers?
Does my site offer visitors a compelling reason to come back often?
Does my website copy make use of the most popular keywords and keyphrases?
Does the average visitor look at several pages, or leave after just one?
Which particular group of users generates the most conversions?
Are your keywords and keyphrases driving targeted traffic?
Are there broken pages or graphics that are hurting my website's credibility?
Do most visitors tend to exit on a particular page? What might be causing them to leave on that page?
Are your landing pages converting visitors into customers?
Are visitors naturally navigating between sections of the site that lead to cross-selling and up-selling opportunities?
Are visitors abandoning the sale at the shopping cart?
Are visitors finding answers on the customer service and FAQ pages?
11 Free or Low-Cost Web Analytics Tools
Check out the following sources for free (or extremely cheap) ways to dive into web analytics. This list is sure to contain a web analytics vendor that suits your needs.
How to Generate Site-Referrer Ideas
Site referrers build traffic for your website. Here's a quick list of some site referrers you may not have thought of — and a few you may need to be reminded of.
Mainstream search directories
Niche search engines
Submitting content to free article banks
Strategic alliances with other companies
Offering free content on your site
Search engine marketing
Contests and awards
Promoting a charitable cause
Friends, family and employees