Posts Tagged ‘web analytics’

4 Tools To Measure The Effectiveness of Your Web Site

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

If you’re new to web marketing then you may not be aware of the different options you have for measuring the effectiveness of your web site. There are many different tools out there that measure everything from the pages that people visit all the way down to what sections of a page visitors are focusing on.

Each of these four tools provides different insight into what is happening on your web site. The first two tools should be part of every site. For those looking for deeper information then I highly recommend integrating heat map and A/B testing tools into your site.

Web Analytics

Analytics software tells you how many visitors come to your site, what pages they are viewing, and where are they going. You can view the paths that people follow through your site, see which pages are causing your visitors to leave, and measure the performance of your campaigns. If you have a web site, you need to have a web analytics tool setup.

Google Analytics is a great free option and one of the best web analytics tools on the market. Setting up an account is simple and adding the necessary code to your site requires little to no coding knowledge depending on how your pages are built.

Webmaster Tools

Adding Google Webmaster Tools will give you insight into how Google views your site. With Webmaster Tools you can diagnose problems on your site to ensure your pages are being crawled and that there are no errors with any of your pages. Webmaster Tools also shows you which search queries your site is showing for and how many click throughs your search results receive. Google allows you to optimize what is being crawled by submitting a site map listing. This is something every site owner should do to ensure all of their pages are being crawled. To get started visit Google Webmaster Central.

Heat Maps

Heat map software tells you where a visitors attention is focused on a page. It measures the mouse movement of individuals visiting your site. The combined mouse movements from as little as 50 visits can give an amazing amount of insight into how a page is performing. Heat maps that rely on mouse movement aren’t as accurate as eye tracking but it can give a close approximation of the most important areas of a page.

There are several heat map tools available. Two of my favorite are:

Crazy Egg: For as little as $9 per month, Crazy Egg allows you to measure up to 10 pages on your site for up to 10,000 visits. Crazy Egg was the first heat map tool that I used and have found it to be very effective.

ClickTale: Depending on the type of site that you run and the amount of data you want, you will want to give ClickTale a try. ClickTale is similar to Crazy Egg but where they differ is that ClickTale allows you to view individual visitor sessions. You can go back to a recorded visit and see exactly how individual users are browsing your site. This can be a very effective learning process but it can also be overkill for the average person managing a web site. ClickTale offers a free plan which records up to 400 page views per month.

A/B Testing

Testing applications allow you to setup A/B tests on your site to measure how changes on a page impact visitor actions. Testing is a more advanced practice but it’s one that can have significant results especially if you run an eCommerce site or a site where form completion is important.

Some example of test that you could run:

  • Long form vs. Short Form
  • Text Ad vs. Image Ad
  • Different link text to see what gets more click-throughs
  • Positioning of calls-to-action on a page

To get started, I recommend setting up Google Content Experiments. If you have a Google Analytics account in place then there is no additional code setup required. If you don’t have a Google Analytics account, then you will need to set one up.

Referrer Tracking: How do people find your site?

Friday, August 14th, 2009

One question that every web site owner wants to know is “how do people find my web site”? Luckily there is a simple solution if you’re using a web analytics tool to track your site statistics.

The referrer stat tells you what web sites referred the most people to your site. This stat will list the URL’s of the sites who are sending you traffic. This gives you a great understanding as whether the search engine optimization you are doing is working or if the banner ad you’re running on a blog site is performing well.

Another important statistic which goes along with referrer is the keyword or search word statistic. This stat tells you exactly what a visitor typed into a search engine which led to them finding your site. You want to make sure that they keyword you’ve optimized your site for show up in this statistic. If not, you know there is work to be done. When you put the referrer and keyword stats together, you have a powerful way of understanding how people are finding your web site.

Tracking Web Site Visitors: Visits vs. Visitors

Friday, August 14th, 2009

There are several basic web site statistics you should know. The first one we’re going to review is visitor statistics.

Visitor stats tell you how many people have come to your web site. As the popularity of your site grows and your site shows up in more search results, more people will come to your site. This gives you a good guage as to how well your site is performing over time.

It is important to know that there are two different visitor statistics, visits and visitors. They mean very different things. Visitors is the number of unique people who come to your web site over a certain period of time. Visits is the number of times people visited your web site. For example, if 5 people come to your site over the course of the day, this is considered 5 visitors. Now lets say 2 of those people visited your site twice that day. This would still be 5 visitors but the number of visits would be 7.

Marketing for Mavens tracks both of these stats for you. The dashboard view shows you the number of visits you’ve received over the past year and past week. It also show you the number of visits you are on pace for the current day. This gives you quick glimpse into how well your site is performing over time and if you’re on track to continue this performance.

How Well Do You Know Your Web Site?

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

10 questions you should know about your web site. None of these questions require much effort to find but they’re very important to understanding how well you’ve done marketing your web site.

  1. How many visitors does your site average per day? Is this more or less than last week? Last year?
  2. How do people find your web site? If they came from a search engine, what key words did they use to find it?
  3. What are people interested in once they come to your site? What are your most visited pages?
  4. Why are people leaving?
  5. How many leads has your site generated?
  6. Of the people visiting your site, how many are close to becoming leads?
  7. Is the money you’re spending on your web site working?
  8. Do you know which Internet marketing campaigns are bringing in the most people? Most conversions?
  9. Are you tracking these campaigns? What resources, videos, podcasts, pdfs, etc., are campaigns drawing people toward?
  10. Are your blog posts, Twitter updates, etc. driving traffic? Is there a direct relationship between posts and spikes in traffic?

Answering these questions will give you a good understanding of why people are coming to your site, what they want, and whether they’re finding it. Your goal is to match your visitors to your products/services through great content and targeted internet marketing campaigns focused on your niche. If your web site is doing this effectively, conversions, sales, and/or subscription rates will be very high.

Over the next few posts, we’ll provide more detail to each of these questions. If you have other questions to add, post them in the comments and I’ll add them to the list.

Overcoming Internet Marketing Overload

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

It is very easy to become overwhelmed by Internet marketing. After all, it is made of so many different disciplines, each of which could easily be a full-time job on their own. So how do you avoid Internet marketing overload?

Stay Focused

The first discipline to learn is web analytics. If you aren’t tracking your site statistics, you need to start now. Web analytics is a great place to start because all of your other Internet marketing programs can build off of it. Unless you know what is happening on your web site, you won’t know if the work you put into SEO, paid advertising, email marketing, etc. are worth the time, money, and effort you put in.

To get started you will want to track some core statistics. You can measure any statistics that you’d like but you will want to keep it simple to start with. Tracking visitors, visits, page views, and conversions would be a good start. Tracking these statistics weekly or monthly will help you determine how well your site is doing over time.

Expand Your Knowledge

Once you become comfortable tracking and understanding your web site statistics you will want to explore other areas of Internet marketing. This could involve search engine optimization, building a marketing campaign, or setting up Google ads. The option is up to you but stay focused on one discipline at a time and refer back to your statistics so you know what you’re doing is working. At this point you may want to add more tracking information to your weekly/monthly report to track your new projects. For example, tracking referring sites will help you recognize whether the time and effort you spent on SEO is working. You would see more people coming to your site from Google and Bing.

Just Keep Tracking

Tracking your statistics is the key to Internet marketing success. It is very easy to spend hours and hours of your time and never receive any results. Whenever you create a new Internet marketing campaign, make sure you have a way to track it in your report. This will save you a lot of time, effort, and money and allow you to focus on what works and retire what doesn’t.

Every Visitor to Your Site is a Potential Customer

Friday, February 27th, 2009

Stop lumping all of your visitor traffic into one big bucket. In tough economic times, you can’t afford to let one visitor go without making the best effort that you can to understand their needs and solve their problems.

If the extent of your web analytics reporting is to track visitors and pageviews on a monthly basis and assuming that more visitors/pageviews equals more leads/purchases, then you’re missing a huge opportunity. In this scenario you’re playing the percentages. You know that you can convert leads at a certain rate and, therefore, more traffic is good for your business. Well what happens when the number of people to your site levels off or when the people coming to your site have less and less budget to purchase your products? Now you can see how this isn’t an effective strategy.

Too many companies focus all there attention on increasing their web site traffic but far fewer focus the attention that each individual visitor deserves once they get to their site. If you’ve done an effective job of getting people to your site then they should already be interested in what you have to offer. Take advantage of this and start nurturing these visitors by helping them fulfill their wants and needs. Treat them as individuals and stop counting them as traffic.

Web Site Conversion and Promotion Activity Reports

Thursday, December 11th, 2008

I’m excited to announce that Phase 1 of our report functionality is now available. With any reporting option there is a huge amount of data and complexity that can be displayed. Our goal was to keep the reporting function as simple as possible. One of the most frustrating things with web analytics applications is that they gather so much information that you have no idea where to begin when you look at the data. With this in mind, we created a very simple first pass at a reporting page that will deliver the kind of statistics you need to make quick business decisions.

Conversion Data

The first level of data shows the number of conversions you are receiving on your web site. To track conversions, simply add the standard Marketing for Mavens JavaScript code to the page you want to track conversions on, add that page URL into the page tracking section of the Marketing for Mavens application, and make sure the conversion box is checked. Now your page conversions will show on the report page.

The second level of data is click-through data for each promotion in your account. You can see, per week, which promotions are receiving the highest level of activity allowing you to quickly assess what promotions should be removed or redesigned to improve the response rates.

conversion and promotion activity graph

All of this information has been combined into one chart at the top of the report page so you can quickly spot the peaks and see how each page or promotion is tracking over time. Additional report functionality will be added over the next couple of weeks.

Right now, the next phase is scheduled to include RSS tracking. This will allow you to track blog posts, event data, or any other RSS related activity to see if the spikes in conversions and promotion activity match with the spikes in the events and content publishing activities that you’re doing on a weekly basis. The reporting page will remain fluid for now. Nothing is written in stone so please provide your feedback. It’s the only way to ensure that we can deliver the best report functionality that you need.

Social Media Metrics Firefox Plugin For Google Analytics

Monday, November 24th, 2008

Awesome Firefox plugin which adds social media metrics and Yahoo inlinks to Google Analytics.

2 Vote(s)

Easily Improve Your Web Site's Conversion Rates Today

Wednesday, November 19th, 2008

The easiest and best way to improve the conversion rates on your web site is to ensure that your callouts, promotions, ads (or whatever else you like to call them…) are in alignment with the needs of the people viewing them. This isn’t rocket science but it isn’t something that is easily done on most web sites.

For starters, you need to have a way to manage your promotions. This can be done through most content management systems. Then you need to track each individual visitor on your site so you can learn about their specific needs. Very few web analytics packages go into this level of detail. Finally, you need a way to process each person’s visitor history in real-time and display the promotion that best matches that visitor’s need when a new web page loads. Again, there aren’t that many options. When you tie these 3 pieces together you have a powerful system for increasing the conversion rates on your web site.

What we’ve done with Marketing for Mavens is put these 3 pieces together in a single package where you can easily manage all of the promotions on your web site. Our tracking code builds a visitor history which allows us to automatically display your most relevant promotions to each visitor in real time. Now, several promotions can share the same real esate on your web pages and you can be confident knowing that each time a promotion is displayed, it is targeted to a specific visitor that wants that information. This will lead to an increase in your conversion rates providing your sales team with more leads. Right now, Marketing for Mavens can be tried for free by signing up for the current beta program.

Sign up today to see how your conversion rates can be improved by matching your promotions to the needs of your visitors.

Track the Success of Your Promotions and Offers

Thursday, September 25th, 2008

We’ve added a new link tracking option to the promotion form that allows Marketing for Mavens to track the success of your links. This will allow you to see how successful your promotions and offers are and compare them over time. Right now, the backend system is in place to track each link and display the results as “clicks” on the promotion page. Soon, you will be able to see which visitors clicked on your promotions and track whether the promotion led to a conversion (sale, lead, registration, etc.).

As always, Marketing for Mavens is in beta. If you find any bugs with this new feature, please email us at bugs@marketingformavens.com.