Online activity has a huge advantage over every other form of media: it can be tracked with a large degree of accuracy. We do this using analytics software such as Google Analytics.
Step 1: The People That Already Visited Your Site
Parkside Media recommends every site owner enables Google Analytics, not only because it’s free, but because it’s easy to use yet provides an enterprise-level degree of granularity in the results – i.e. you can drill down into the metrics to the nth degree.
Before you get worried about data overload, we fully implement and configure Google Analytics for you:
- Ensuring the correct code is in your website, and in the right place
- Establishing the correct structures for tracking ecommerce transactions and other goals within the website
- Disabling tracking of logged in users (if possible) so that if you are editing the site you don’t skew the results
- Training on how to interpret Analytics.
Google Analytics is so powerful that it can tell you in minute detail about your users:
- How many people visit your site
- How many came from each city (e.g. Hamilton, Auckland, Tauranga)
- What pages they looked at
- How they found you
- How long they spent there
- What their computer specifications were
- And much more
Step 2: The Potential Visitors That Ignored Your Site
Google Analytics is great for telling you what happened on your website once people got there, but unless you know how many times you were found but not clicked on, you will be lacking information when making key decisions to improve conversion rates.
We set up Google Webmaster Tools, another free service. This gives us all the information we need to track improvements in your ranking and its influence on how many people click on your listings. Webmaster Tools also can indicate problems within your site that might be preventing Google from effectively indexing your pages.
Examples of Google Analytics and Webmaster Tools Metrics
How users found you – an example of a site where search engines refer a good proportion of all the visitors.
Visitor growth over time – one of our sites that within a year went from zero to over 820,000 page views a month
The total number of backlinks to your site (Webmaster Tools is the only way you can find this out) – this is our iPhone game Drift Legends, which has an fairly substantial number of links to the site:
Page download speed – it gives an indication of whether your server might be struggling
There are hundreds more metrics you can access. We provide training in how to use the software and we ensure that it’s set up and working properly on your website.
Do we recommend other website analytics packages?
There are other free analytics packages available such as AWStats and Woopra, but we focus on Analytics because it works and we believe that sharing the data with Google allows it to more effectively rank and index your website.