Posts Tagged ‘Analytics’

Great Methods to Boost Your Sites Profile

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Whether it’s for an ecommerce site or any other, it’s vital to get your name out there. There was a time when businesses got promoted by word of mouth. It still holds true for websites, word of mouth is a great provider for business, but in this case word of mouth most often refers to people posting on forums or from websites linking to you. However getting this to happen requires some work and you can’t simply rely on them coming to you. Here we provide a variety of seller utilised methods for getting your name out there to the right people.

Blog

Blogging is a great way to boost awareness of your business. Firstly it can enhance the profile of your website within Google’s search engine but it can also help bring people to your site in a new way. If you write blog articles regularly which are relevant to your business then you’re providing an alternative point of access for your site. Furthermore, people looking for information on your industry or product will find it very helpful, and who do you think they will look to when it comes time to buy? The website that speaks like an authority in their industry.

Analyse Data

If you don’t have analytics installed on your site, get it. It is an invaluable tool for analysing your sites data and it won’t cost you a thing. It provides you with all the info you will need to understand how users are interacting with your site. Through this you can determine your sites strong points as well as any short comings, this will allow you to make the relevant changes to maximise its potential. Among a multitude of other features you will also find you can track your goal conversions (most often sales) and pinpoint your target market. As a result you will know how to get your site out to the right people.

Social Media

A fairly modern method of site promotion, the effects are currently difficult to measure. However, if you consider that you are promoting to the millions of twitter users then you start to see the potential. By posting tweets related to and answering questions about your industry you can build up a reputation and some followers and hopefully direct some of that back to your site.

PPC

One of the most direct ways of advertising your site is to use a Pay-per-Click campaign. Although there will be some costs involved the rewards can easily outweigh this if it is applied properly. The result is that you will receive adverts listed at the top of relevant searches and pay an amount each time someone clicks through to your site. The end result being, that for a small cost you can get your site a great deal more exposure without extensive SEO.

As an expert on money transfer services, Martin Able knows the best methods for maintaining secure and efficient online credit card processing.

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How Useful Is Event Tracking to You?

Friday, February 19th, 2010

Event tracking is not the most common aspect of Google Analytics and can often be overlooked by users. However it can be very useful for many different kinds of site in providing an alternative way to gather data on user trends. What Event Tracking provides is information on when and how users are interacting with various website elements such as file downloads and a variety of page gadgets. Basically, a more advanced profile of user interaction with the more dynamic aspects of your site (i.e. those that don’t take you to another page).

By using this you will be able to get a fuller insight into how accessible and useable these various additions to your site are. This includes Flash-driven elements and video players, embedded AJAX, gadgets, file downloads and loading time for data.

Of course tracking some of these elements will be more useful to some websites than others. Take a software company for instance. If they have free software patch downloads available or PDF files on using their product then they will very likely gain from using event tracking. Through this they will be able to determine the levels of downloads from specific pages and determine the time it is taking for users to achieve these downloads. This could provide further insight into page view trends and time spent on pages. It’s also useful to note that by monitoring the time spent on downloads the webmaster can determine whether download speeds are being limited by the server in some way.

In another example, a site might have a great deal of videos embedded on one page. Without event tracking it would be difficult to gauge why a user is spending a great deal of time on that page. With event tracking you will be well aware of how often users are watching these videos. If you provide a large number of videos on your page you will be able to determine which are less popular than others.

In order to apply event tracking you will have to put in some forethought as there is no specific model for using it.

  • Firstly you will have to determine which events you want to track. You may have a wide variety of dynamic elements on your site, but even starting with just one will provide a useful starting point.
  • Secondly you should correlate your event tracking with your previous analytics reports. This way you can determine which elements and on which pages your event tracking would be best applied to.
  • Finally, ensure that you use a consistent and clear standard for naming for event categories, actions and labels. Doing so will ensure that your information will be easier to understand and will be better organised.

The Author of this piece, Martin Able is an expert in online credit card processing and has set up money transfer services for an array of businesses.

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Educating Yourself in Google Analytics

Friday, February 5th, 2010

When it comes it familiarising yourself with the Google Analytics system there are a lot of areas that require looking into to give you a reasonably concise overview. Among the most important areas to familiarise yourself with are the monitoring of visitor data and creating and tracking goals within your sites account. This requires quite a bit of time to be put aside in order to really get a feel for the system. However, once you have this under your belt you can make the next vital step in analysing and utilising the data that analytics gathers for your site in order to really begin optimising your site for success.

On this blog we provide a variety of articles which hopefully have assisted in making you more aware of the benefits which can be reaped from an in-depth understanding of how to utilise Google Analytics effectively. Anyone who has looked into our other posts will be well aware of how essential Analytics can be to improve your site, and in the case of ecommerce how it can assist you in improving your traffic and sales.

Usefully, aside from the articles we provide, Google Analytics is equally devoted to assisting users in the understanding and use of their web traffic analysis tool. There are several ways in which Analytics sets out to provide users with best practice methods and techniques to allow web based businesses to make analytics work for them.

Analytics API

As discusses in a previous articles the Analytics Data Export API allows users to make Analytics work for them. Through this extremely useful interface businesses can tailor Analytics to work exactly how they want. While the online setup provides a comprehensive overview, the ability to create your own modified version offline has the capacity to be specifically useful to your business making it incomparable in its usefulness.

Furthermore there are no limitations to how you can analyse and compare the data as the methods are entirely within your own hands. However, this does require a reasonable level of programming knowledge and understanding of analytics, so is not ideal for everyone. However for the advanced Analytics user it provides the stepping stone for a more personalised and prioritised setup.

Analytics Seminars, Videos and Blogs

For those trying to get a foothold in Analytics there are a variety of resources available from the Analytics team themselves. The analytics blog provides insight into a variety of areas within and related-to Google Analytics. In addition there are videos available which are created by Analytics employees to boost your understanding of key areas in an easier to follow format. The videos cover topics ranging from novice to advanced user practices and encompass not only using Analytics but also other applications that coincide with optimising your site such as AdWords and Website Optimiser. If your business is in the United States and is keen to get the best understanding of Analytics possible then Google regularly run advanced and introductory seminars across the country which you can register for.

Analytics Qualifications

Finally, for those who already have a good grasp of Analytics there are Google Analytics Qualifications which can be attained online through their Analytics IQ course and Test. This will not only offer further insight into advanced use of Analytics but will provide a qualification which is very useful to have in the industry.

The main element of Analytics that makes it so accessible stems from Google’s maxim for assisting good web development and ecommerce practices. It’s in Google’s interest to assist in the development of websites and best practices in web design and SEO. As a result you will find that there are numerous avenues available to you through which you can get detailed assistance in making Analytics an indispensible part of your websites upkeep and advancement.

“This article was provided by Martin Able a Lancore employee focused on providing customers with the best money transfer services for ensuring secure online credit card processing.”

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Applying the Analytics Annotation Feature

Monday, February 1st, 2010

The team at Google Analytics offers a variety of features and usefully are regularly updating them and introducing new ones. Analytics users are constantly asking Google to provide certain features that would be of use and there are a few suggestions which crop up more often than others. Fortunately, Google do listen and the users get their hands on something that can really enhance their use of analytics and benefit their business.

In December last year users where provided with just that in the form of Analytics Annotations. A simple addition to the application, it can be an extremely effective aid in monitoring your websites traffic.

For some time users of Analytics have been suggesting that a useful feature would be to be able to set notes that indicate the start of changes or additions to their site. This way they could monitor whether there are traffic changes that result from a change made on the site or to the business at a specific point in time. For example, if an annotation was set to record the date at which the business started an advertising campaign or made a change to the site, then the web administrator could determine how the traffic has changed since this date.

Web traffic always has a tendency to fluctuate making it difficult to determine what is affecting it the most. Furthermore, web based businesses are regularly making updates and additions to their sites and promotions in order to attain greater traffic volumes and most importantly – conversions. As a result, having a simple tool available to make note of when transitions were made allows the business to more precisely evaluate the success of a specific change.

Prior to its release many Analytics users had requested such a service, so it has definitely been eagerly anticipated. Google Analytics latched onto the idea when more and more users where turning to a note taking plug-in for Firefox due to a lack of a viable alternative. Unfortunately the Firefox plug-in could not generate notation beyond the machine in use. Analytics Annotation allows notes to be attached directly to the dashboard in Analytics so that users can view them from anywhere.

To set up an Annotation within Analytics simply access your Analytics Account and proceed to the dashboard view. From there select the tab directly under the main graph and then opt to ‘create new annotation’. From here you can now enter the date on which you want the annotation to be applied, name the annotation and determine whether you want it to be private or shared. You then simply save the annotation.

It’s an extremely simple feature but was very much needed in Analytics. The provision of this simple tool will be of great use to Analytics users allowing them to more easily document changes in their business and track how traffic varies as a result.

“Martin Able the author of this article works as part of the Lancore team to monitor money transfer services for clients and ensure the best standards for online credit card processing.”

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The Google Analytics Data Export API

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

As we are all very well aware, Google Analytics can provide unrivalled insight into the inner workings of your website. Several of our previous articles have discussed how it can be used to optimise site content and ecommerce systems to improve sales as well as using the visitor features to tailor your site for your user-base. These articles have shown the usefulness of Analytics and how the data can be displayed in varying formats to assist in its analysis. Without these features the analytics data is a complex array of almost indiscernible data. This is where the Google Analytics Data Export API comes in.

An API or Application Programming Interface is like a gateway implemented by a software program to allow interaction with other software. What the Google Analytics Data Export (GADE) API does is allow users of Google analytics to request data from their Google Analytics accounts on a platform separate from Google Analytics web interface. As a result, the API allows the user to utilise the data and create outputs and data displays that they have created or modified themselves that are not available within Analytics itself.

Of course with such a complex system Google Analytics wouldn’t simply serve it up and leave you to it. The API includes a few features to get you started and allows you to start developing your own applications for requesting data. The Data Feed Query Explorer is a simple interface that comes part-and-parcel with the API and allows simple exploration of your data with a variety of popular queries . There is also a selection of JavaScript examples which can give some insight into how to get started with writing your own. Finally their JavaScript guide provides the tutorials that will get even beginner programmers off and running.

In order to get the API up and running you must of course first have access to an Analytics account and profile to track your websites use. Furthermore, it is beneficial if the account has been gathering data for some time to give you a greater scope for the information you gather through the API. If you don’t have an account then one can be set up by registering a Google account and using that ID to create an Analytics account. Once you have done so follow the instructions to set up the websites tracking code.

However the Data Export API is currently still in private Beta and access has to be applied through the Truster Tester Program.

The usefulness of this feature is in the ability for users to use their own code to tailor the results in exactly the way they want them. This will take away many of the boundaries that Analytics has at the moment. Hopefully the Data Export API will make the transition into becoming a publicly available beta in the near future.

“The Author of this article Martin Able has worked as part of the Lancore team on developing better methods of online credit card processing as well as money transfer services.”

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Managing and Optimising your Site Content through Analytics

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

As any website guru will tell you, ‘content is king’. This applies as much to an ecommerce site as to any other. It is vital that the site provides something invaluable to potential customers. Of course no website will be perfect for everyone but it is vital that even in a niche market you are providing a very high standard. For an ecommerce site, content refers to products and services.

As a result, it is important to know how popular the products, pages and features of your site are with your current and new clients. Analytics provides a variety of tools about success of site content and how it can be optimised.

Top Content

This feature allows you to gauge the popularity of each individual page of your site. You can determine the most popular pages, their number of page views, the average time on page and the bounce and exit rates. Through this you can determine which of your pages are working for and against your overall productivity.

To add additional depth of understanding to this feature it can be viewed through a variety of different methods such as by percentage, performance and comparison. Furthermore there are a variety of advanced filters to assist with evaluation of pages.

If for example you find that a particular page has a high bounce or exit rate then it might be prudent to re-evaluate the page to determine what is affecting its views. It may be the case that the page has poor navigation or simply offers something that your range of clients isn’t interested in.

In this case it is always prudent to be running website optimizer on several of the pages, this allows you to check your content order to make changes and improve your site. Otherwise you may want to rethink the usefulness and relevance of that particular page. It is important not to get clients sidetracked from the key aims of the site.

Top Landing Pages

This feature works very well in conjunction with the Top Content analysis. What the top landing page tool provides is insight into how people are accessing your site. While you would expect the majority of your traffic to initially reach your index or intro page it is important to consider that people will find their way into a variety of landing pages.

This can most likely occur as a result of a popular product or potentially your own SEO campaign. If you find that a certain page or product is receiving more attention then you may want to check up further on this product’s sales and act to capitalise on it. You could further endorse this product via advertising campaigns or special offers.

Alternatively, if this popularity can be tied to an SEO or marketing campaign then you may want to create similar campaigns for other products in order to reap the benefits across your site.

Top Exit Pages

Conversely, the Top Exit Pages feature allows you to look at where people are leaving your site. If this happens to be your order confirmed page then it is probably not such a problem. However, if cart or order confirmation pages are seeing high exit rates then you may want to look into the reasons for this. High exit rates in these cases are often the result of poorly organised forms or a lack of information. It is in the checkout page that users become most sceptical of a site and are more likely to leave. If they see something they don’t like such as extra charges announced on the last page or a poorly made address details page then you can count on a large exit rate.

In this instance creating goal funnels can be a very useful endeavour. This can provide in-depth information about the exit and success rates of the pages funnelling into the goal page (usually the confirmation or ‘thanks for ordering’ page). For more information on using and setting up goal funnels check out our previous article.

Site Overlay

This is an extremely useful tool as it provides an overview of link popularity across your entire site. When using it you are provided with an overview of how you would usually view your site but with a percentage tag beside each link on the page. This allows you to look at your site from a client point of view and to see how your traffic flows from page to page. This feature provides a very useful insight into how your site is being browsed.

Using these features of Google Analytics, as well as a few others can provide extremely useful information. What is important is that you analyse and use this information correctly to optimise and prioritise products and pages on your site.

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