In the article I’m going to tell you about Web Analytics – Optimizing your Web Performance. As we discuss in detail about website design and optimization, one aspect that forms the basis of all your actions is web analytics. Web analytics refers to in-depth reporting and analysis of the performance of your website with the use of web analytics tools.
As the internet becomes increasingly complex, web analytics can help you find the exact pattern of visitor behaviour on your website, the grey areas and the points where you as a marketer need to improve upon.
How does it help?
Web analytics gives you comprehensive data about what exactly is happening on your website. Some of the key areas where web analytics can help you monitor and improve are as follows:
Bounce rate refers to one-page visits. It is the percentage of visitors that left after viewing just one page of your website. The first task for a web marketer is to ensure that the bounce rate is minimal and controlled.
Web marketers want visitors to scan maximum pages. If 50% of your visitors left your website without going deeper into the website, you can be certain that you have a problem on your hand. Most web analytical tools give you a drill-down of page-level, campaign-level and keyword level.
Thus, you know exactly whether you have a design issue or need a campaign restructure to ensure that visitors spend more time on the website.
Web analytics tools give you the source that contributes the highest/least traffic to your website.
If visitors come to your website directly, i.e. by just typing your website URL or bookmarking, you have a strong branding and your offline campaigns are doing the trick for you.
If you have a higher search engine traffic (organic or paid search), your SEO and paid search guys are really at their job and not just whiling time at the snooker table.
If referral sources like Facebook, Twitter etc. drive considerable traffic, your SMO seems to be taking some shape.
Web analytics reports gives you all the details of your top performing pages and landing pages (entry points). If visitors are clicking on your paid search ads or organic links, coming to the landing page and leaving without reading or converting, your landing page needs to be fixed. Either it does not connect with the ad or the design is poor or the content is irrelevant.
Goals and Funnels
Yes, getting traffic does not mean anything if the visits are not transforming into conversions. Most business owners and marketers are obsessed by this magic word. While analyzing your goal conversion percentage, you must analyze the funnel or the path that leads to your final goal. A high funnel drop-out means that your shopping cart sucks and it’s time to make it simpler and easier.
Web Analytical Tools
There are a range of web analytical tools available in the market. Google Analytics, a free tool, offers users almost all the features of a paid tool. However, there are some other advanced web analytics tools like Omniture, Coremetrics, Webtrends, Clicktracks that are used by large organizations for regular reporting and analysis.
However, while taking any decision, rely on cumulative data of atleast three months. Making any decision on the basis of few days old data can be suicidal and must be avoided.