Is Anyone Out There? – Web Analytics

Is Anyone Out There? - Web AnalyticsOften I talk to people who assume that because I design websites, the money is just rolling in. (If only!) These are usually the same people who assume that if they create a website the money will come rolling in for them.
The internet does provide a plethora of opportunities for those willing to go after them. But like anything else, there are no short cuts. Running a web-based business is still running a business; you must work to make it successful.
By using web analytics you can start working smarter not just just harder. Yup, that ol' chestnut.
Web analytics employ a variety of tools to look at your website statistics. How many page views (commonly referred to as hits) are you getting? Of those views, how many people are delving deeper into your site? Of those people how many are taking a desired action; making a purchase, signing up for your newsletter, etc.?
You can take it a step further and set up a special landing page, or button on your home page to which you can send visitors via a print or radio ad.
Now you have a variety of data to look at to assess what's working for your customers and what's not. Did your email campaign actually drive visitors to your site? Did people buy as a result?
You get the idea.
How??
For some of us, using these kinds of online analytics - or learning to use them - is natural. For others its cause to reach for the Pepsid AC.
So here's the good news. There are many off the shelf software packages out there that you can use. There are some free tools that will get you started, and inexpensive options for those looking for a bit more depth.
Seeing an Analyst
You can, of course, work with a professional to help keep the ulcers at bay. But while the temptation will be great to hand over the reins and say "Just Do It," force yourself to keep yourself in the game.
Have your web analytics pro provide specific information and reports on what she or he is doing. If you don't understand something, have them explain it again, in plain English, until you are clear.
Show Me The Money
The whole point of web analytics is to fine tune your marketing efforts. No one can make you any kind of promises (and not be lying!) but you can agree on some realistic measurements to gauge success. These kinds of details should be clearly outlines up front.
The internet provides wonderful opportunities for business owners - who are willing to work for them.

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