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Analytics Blog Post Archives

Analytics Category

The Value of the Visitor Metric

visitor metricIf you sell a product or service, tracking visits and visitors to your site has very little overall value as an independent metric. Where tracking visits does become valuable is in conjunction with other metrics.

Traffic metrics themselves can be easily manipulated. And many web marketers actually engage in practices that are designed to drive up visitor hits to the site without any consideration as to whether those visitors are the site’s target audience. For many, this is just old-fashioned SEO. Their job is to get rankings (and traffic), but it’s up to the business to convert that traffic into customers.

Unfortunately, this is an outdated SEO philosophy, and one that provides little value to the customer.

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Conversions: The Analytics Goldmine

analytics goldmine

So how to you know if your optimization efforts are paying off? Sure, you can look at rankings, but that only tells you if you’re ranked. You can assume from that you’re getting traffic (which can be a dangerous assumption), but still, that doesn’t tell you much about the value of the optimization efforts.

Unless you look at analyics, (beyond traffic data), you’ll never know if optimization is providing true value. I’m not discounting the traffic data by any means. In fact a good pre- and post-optimization snapshot of your traffic can provide immense value. But beyond there, you want to see how the page actually performs with your visitors.

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The Only 2 Things You Need To Do Right To Have A Great Website

Two things you need to do to have a great website

There are only two things you need to get right to have a great website. The first is – meet your users’ expectations. When they arrive on your site, are they content they’ve arrived at a place that’s going to meet their needs, or are they not quite sure? Do you have exactly what they came to the site for, or do they need to look somewhere else?

The second is – make it easy to use. When they go to use your site, do certain elements confuse them and leave questions in their heads? Do they ever get frustrated? Or do they find it easy and time-efficient to complete whatever tasks they came to the site to complete?

Meet users’ expectations. Make it easy to use. Do those two things well and you’ll have a great website. Do them not so well, and your business will suffer the consequences.

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Awesomize Google Analytics (Part III) – Filter Your Data


Setting up Google Analytics filters

Welcome to Part III of awesomizing your Google Analytics account!  If you haven’t already, make sure you go back and check out Part I and Part II  before implementing what’s in this post.  It will save you some trouble because awesomization (awesome + customization) is a process.  But once you have a great account structure and you’re collecting valuable data that’s specific to your website, you’ll want to filter out some data that comes into your reports after you install the standard global analytics tracking code.

SifterThe tracking code isn’t partial. It just does what it does.  Therefore, it’s going to collect all of the data it can when it fires — whether you want all of it or not.  Chances are, you don’t want all of it, so it’s good to have what you don’t want taken out of your reports so you don’t come to false conclusions regarding what you observe.  This will happen if you’re unaware that your data was polluted by something you didn’t want there.

Here are some popular types of data that many businesses want filtered out of their Google Analytics accounts (or specific views within their accounts).  Read through them and consider what might be appropriate specifically for you.

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Awesomize Google Analytics (Part II) – Collect Site-Specific Data

Google analytics setup

Welcome to Part II of awesomizing your Google Analytics account!  If you haven’t read Part I of this series yet (Create a Great Account Structure), I would encourage you to do so.  While you don’t necessarily need to implement my recommendations in order, having a good account structure in place first helps keep you organized as you implement the rest.

Our second way to awesomize (awesome + customize) your account is . .  . collecting site-specific data. As I said in Part I, there’s certain data that doesn’t come with the out-of-the-box version of Google Analytics.  It needs to be customized because you are unique.

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Awesomize Google Analytics (Part I) – Create A Great Account Structure

It's important to set up Google Analytics account structure to fit your business' unique needs.

If you’re not taking full advantage of all that your Google Analytics account can do for you, you’re leaving strategy-changing, business-changing insights on the table.  Sure, you’ve inserted the standard tracking code and are collecting the standard data.  But your business and your website are not “standard,” are they?  No, you’re one of a kind!  Your account should be also.

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Ask the Pit Crew: What Is the Best Way to Get Started with Google Analytics?

Ask the Pole Position Marketing Pit CrewMembers of the Pole Position Marketing pit crew answer your web marketing questions from their unique perspectives with a “bonus lap” by a guest industry expert.

Have a question you’d like answered? Ask the pit crew!

This Week’s Question: 

What is the best way to get started with Google Analytics? 

Stoney deGeyter’s Answer from an SEO Perspective:

People often correlate SEO with “getting rankings.” That’s part of it, but it’s not the whole story, or even the most essential part of the story. Top search engine rankings do not equal business success!

Let’s say you sell motorcycle batteries. You come to us and tell me you want to rank #1 for “batteries.” Let’s also assume you have the budget necessary to succeed in ranking for such a term.
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Yeah, But… Social Media Can’t Be Tracked

Yeah, But... It's time to bring your business up to speed

Even as social media matures there are still many misconceptions surrounding it. Take my job for example as a social media marketing strategist. Do you have any idea the kind of reaction I get when I give people my title? Here are a few:

“So you just play on Facebook all day, that’s awesome!”

“What a cool job, that must be so easy!”

“Why do businesses need marketing plans for social media?”

Or, from people of my parent’s generation (no offense Mom and Dad), a blank stare because they’re not quite sure what that all means.

When I encounter “yeah, butters” who say social media can’t be tracked, and I ask them what their social media goals are, I get the same response as the last one above. I recently spoke to a group at a local chamber of commerce, and at the beginning of the presentation I asked people to raise their hand if they used social media for their business. About 90% of them did. Then I asked how many had a plan for their social media marketing. You guessed it, that number dropped significantly–only one person out of 30 raised their hand.
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