Web Analytics tools – how they can help to grow your business

Web Analytics tools – what you need to know to get started

 WEb analtices

There’s no point in investing your time and money in building a website and using social media for your business, if you are not taking time to measure how you are doing, that’s where web analytics tools come in.

Using the right tools will help you drive your websites performance and help you develop an effective online strategy based on reliable information.

What should you be measuring?

The short answer is everything! There are tools available both free or  paid that allow you to measure every aspect of your online activity from social media marketing, your website & landing pages, SEO, email marketing and even your business blog.

Analysing Site visitor patterns as detailed below is one of the first things to look at.

site visitor pattersn

This diagram shows the process you should follow when using web analytics tools.

web analytics framework

Check out the 11Best Web Analytics tools here.

For now, we are going to focus on two key areas – how to measure your website & landing pages and how to measure effectiveness of your social media marketing activity.

 Traffic to your website

How to measure your Website and landing pages

There are two main tools you can use to measure your website free Google Analytics  or a paid service like Hubspot.

Either tool will provide you with key information:

  • unique visitors – total number of individual visitors during a specified time period
  • new v repeat visitors – compares number of unique visitors to those who were returning
  • Traffic sources – how visitors got to your website – direct search, referred from another site etc.
  • Backlinks -other websites that are linking to your page and sending traffic to your site
  • most & least popular pages
  • Conversion rates – number of people who completed a specified goal you set, e.g. signed up for newsletter.
  • bounce rates – number of visitors who left site without going past first page

Armed with this information you will be able to make informed decisions about the structure of your site, its content, performance of keywords, how banner ads are working etc.

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Google Analytics – Get started!

Google Analytics is a free service; follow these easy steps to get started, gaining valuable insights for your business:

  • Sign up for Google AdWords.
  • You will be asked to verify that you are the site owner.
  • Google will then provide you with a tracking code.
  • Place this code in the header area of every single page on your site.

Now you are set up for Google Analytics, and you can start to access the valuable insights it has to offer.

Google analytics have a helpful beginners guide available, there is even a You tube channel dedicated to google analytics, both are worth checking out, for lots more tips and information.

Here’s some more advice on how to make the most out of Google Analytics.

measure social media

How to measure social media

If you are using social media as part of your online marketing strategy you will need to know the basic information e.g. number of Facebook friends and fans, number of Twitter followers, how fast your audience is growing etc.

Social media platforms will provide you with statistics e.g. for Facebook users the Facebook Insights tool & for Twitter users, Hootsuite provides tracking and measurement information.

Once you have the basics you can look at measuring the overall effectiveness of you social media activity.

Social media examiner has a great article on determining your ROI in social media, its worth checking out.

The key metrics to look at for social media include:

  • Social audience growth and reach – total numbers engaged with you on Facebook, Twitter etc.
  • Social media engagement – total number of interactions e.g. Facebook likes, page comments, retweets etc.
  • Traffic generated – total numbers of visitors to your website from social media
  • Conversion rate – total number of actual sales which started out on social media

Facebook insights

Facebook Insights

This tool provides two types of data to users –

  • User Insights: Total page Likes, or a number of fans, daily active users, new Likes/Unlikes, Like sources, demographics, page views and unique page views, tab views, external referrers, media consumption.
  • Interactions Insights: Daily story feedback – post Likes, post comments, per post impressions, daily page activity – mentions, discussions, reviews, wall posts, video posts.

Why is this information important?

Facebook can provide detailed information on demographics of your fans – age, gender, location, interests etc., this can be used to identify where your customers are and build a profile, from there you may want to introduce new products or services that will meet demand, e.g. open a new store in a geographical location where there is high demand but you have no presence.

For more on Facebook Insights for Small Business have a read of this article from mashable.com, they also have a really good beginners guide for Facebook Insights.hootsuite

Hootsuite provides information on Twitter, tracking users and measuring visits etc. Some other tools you can use to measure Twitter include Twitoaster & Viralheat.

Entrepreneur.com have lots more on measuring results from Twitter.

Here’s some more information on measuring social media for your business & for those of you interested in using Google Analytics to track tweet, Facebook likes etc this article will give you lots more detail.

If you’re interested in expanding your analytics into more in depth marketing analytics measuring things like leads, sales, traffic etc. this Hubspot article is a good starting point.

We hope you have found this post useful, don’t forget you can contact us with any comments, we’d love to hear from you.

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Posted on April 2, 2013, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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