Friday, February 13, 2009

The Basics of Reading Web Analytics

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Web analytics is the most informative part of Internet marketing. Through web analytics, you are seeing how well the market is reacting to your advertisements and your campaigns so that you can gauge whether or not you have to improve on some parts and keep up with the others. You’d also know which parts are clearly not yielding results at all and which ones are not really reaching out to your intended market.

Web analytics, however, can be confusing for the first-timer. When you click on “stats,” for example, you can see a lot of information that, if you are not well versed in it, would be crazy. The web analytics information in your website’s control panel is composed of several information or data fields that you need to understand or know about.

However, once you learn to read what it’s in there, that won’t be a problem. You can then use the information there appropriately for your marketing campaign. Are you ready? Here are some of the things that you can see when you read your web analytic information for your website.

IP Address

The most basic information you can find is the IP address. This represents a unique address or individual in the whole of the Internet. From the number of IP addresses, people used to read how many computers or workstations (hence, people) have visited the website.

However, these days, the growth of ISPs that use proxy addresses makes it impossible to determine the unique visitors from all of them because proxies make people hold the same IP addresses. There are unique IP addresses for each network interface card; however, the ISP hides these addresses and substitutes them with the proxy address. Because of that, most web analytic software and systems now use an algorithm based not only on the IP address but also on the operating system the unit uses, among others, in order to determine the uniqueness of the visit.

Number of Visits

After the IP address column, you can see the number of visits that the same IP address has made to your website. For your lead handling functions, this number of visits is already a gauge as to what the lead score is to be assigned to this visitor. The concept is that the number of visits he makes to the visit is an indication of his interest to the content of the website and, hence, his interest to the niche market that your products belong to. This helps you to identify which visitor you can try to contact in order to try and offer a deal.

Referrers

One other column that you can see in a web analytic page is the referrer column. In this column, you can see either an IP address or a website address. Simply put, the referrer column shows you where the lead or the visitor came from or how he found out about your site.

The referrer column, like the IP address, can show you how successfully your ad campaign has become. If you are running multiple marketing campaigns--for example, article submission--the referrer column can be used to find out which of your articles or which of the article directories you have submitted to is giving you the most number of visitors and referrals.

These are the most basic information that you can find in the web analytics form of your websites. There are others, but these are the ones that you can see more clearly and the ones that you can use to find out how effective your marketing campaign is and how you can make moves to even further its effectiveness.

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