Website Analytics. Just the thought of it is enough to put most people to sleep. (kind of like this cat…)
Analytics can be overwhelming. It’s a lot of numbers and confusing terms. And yet, most business owners know that if they are trying to improve their website, analytics are important.
Here at KWSM, we track website analytics for all our clients to see how effective we are at driving traffic back to their website from their social media channels. We prefer Google Analytics, but there are a lot of other options out there as well.
I’m going to show you the 3 most important metrics you need to track on your website. I strongly believe that every business owner who is trying to use their website to get more business has to understand these metrics.
Number of Website Visitors
Also called website traffic or hits, this is your big picture number. This is the number of visits your website received. This is an important number to track because you want the number of people visiting your site to increase! Start tracking this number on a monthly basis to get an idea for how many people are visiting your site. If you see spikes or dips, dig deeper to figure out why.
Top Referring Websites
This refers to other websites that bring traffic to yours. It could be social media networks like Facebook, or it could be other blogs or websites that link to you as a resource. I believe that tracking your referring sites is extremely important. For example, when Pinterest became popular, we started experimenting with sharing our blog posts there. The result? It became, and still is, the number one referrer of traffic to our website. We would have never known that had we not understood where our website traffic was coming from.
Most Popular Content
Track which pages on your site are getting the most traffic. You might be surprised by what you find. For example, our home page, and other main navigation pages get a lot of traffic, as well as the current blog posts that we write. However, we also have a couple blog posts on our website that were written over 2 years ago that consistently get heavy traffic from search engines. When we notice a certain blog post getting a lot of search traffic like this, we will take a second look at that post to determine if there is anything we can add to it to make it even more valuable, or add a call to action to get those visitors to look at the rest of our site or check out our Facebook page.
This is the very tip of the iceberg with analytics. You can go so much more in depth. However, that takes time – not just to look at the numbers, but to learn how to understand them as well. If you take the time on a weekly or monthly basis to look at these three metrics, I am certain you will have a better understanding for how your website is performing. This will help you figure out what is working, what isn’t and how to improve your website moving forward.
Do you use analytics on your website? Let us know in the comments below with how it has (or hasn’t) helped your business!
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