Today: "8 Web Stats You're Milking"
I'm a little bit surprised with the trend. Many of my clients and other webmasters I chat with have very weak analytics tools (if any) and comprehension of their power.
Imagine a world where every visitor to your store came with a tag that said where the customer came from, what car they drove, how big their windshield was, how long they stayed in your store, what aisle they went down, and in the end, what process they went through before they completed a sale. Did they ask a sales person? Try out the new demo? Were they in an out like most male shoppers?
Fact of the matter is, many retailers would pay handsomely for this info. For most web owners this information FREE. If you didn't know already, you web host automatically records most of this informatino in what are called 'log files'. I have seen some poor web hosts make you pay additional for access to these, but for the most part they sit on your server collecting valuable data.
In order to increase your ROI it's absolutely crucial you have some form of web stats program at your disposal that measures visitors and ultimately sales conversions. Remember, in this online game it's not about how much traffic you drive, but how many sales you convert from your investment.
Having said this, most free web statistical programs do not come with the power to track movements and within the website. Luckily, Google has provided Google Analytics, a powerful tool that tracks more than small webmasters wish to track. Of course, you can pay for some more powerful marketing tracking, here is a list of free and pay (from SEOmoz):
Google Analytics is free, it trumps out your out of the box server details like AwStats or the dreaded Web Analytics. Do yourself the favour of placing the Java code at the bottom of all your pages (hopefully you don't have millions, if so then maybe hire a professional web marketing company). The code is placed at the bottom of your code before the closing < /body > tag. Any other great analytics programs out there?
There are other metrics out there that measure long tail keywords (HitTail), and also eye tracking software (Crazy Egg.)