Searching For Buried Treasure

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Everyone hates the thought of statistics. However, if you don’t track the status at your Web site, you will never truly understand who is visiting your Web site and, more importantly, why. Identifying and retracing the “steps” of visitors in Web sites are the meat and potatoes of search engine positioning.

Before you start having flashbacks of high-school algebra class, you should know that tracking and analyzing Web site stats isn’t rocket science. As a matter of fact, tracking and analyzing stats is fairly easy. Regardless of whether you analyze your won Web site’s log files or use an on-demand Web service to collect and process your stats, you can expect to get the same basic information. The following provides you with an overview of the types of data and reports that you can expect and provides you with insight on how to analyze this data in order to make improvements to your Web site.

By tracking and analyzing stats, you can discover which of the pages at your Web site are visited most often. Although you might think that your top-level home page is the most popular, this isn’t always the case. In fact, your analysis might reveal that most people visit some other page at your Web site. This is because the Web allows anyone to visit any Web page at your Web site, and visitors don’t have to start at your home page.

One report you will want to generate is one that tracks popular Web pages. Depending on which Web traffic analysis tool you use, the name of this report will be different. You should look for a report named something like Most Requested Page or Most Popular Pages.

Another report that you might want to look for is one that depicts how much traffic each major area of your Web site receives. Using a report like this, you can determine which area of your Web site needs additional attention versus which pages you may wish to further exploit by using viral and permission marketing techniques.

You might also be interested in looking to see if you can generate reports that show which Web page are visited most often and which Web pages receive the least attention. These reports might be called something like the Most Request Pages and Least Requested Pages report.

The main purpose of generating these reports is to gain an insight as to how people are visiting your Web site. Using the information presented in these reports, you can determine what content your visitors appreciate most and try to provide more of it. You can also find out which pages your visitors are just skimming through and try to improve them in order to give your visitors a reason to slow down and look around, Finally, by looking for common exit points in your Web site, you can focus your efforts on trying to find ways to redirect your visitors back to other parts of your Web site and increase your overall level of stickiness.

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