Who is visiting your site?
To make the most of your website you need to know your visitors, know how they interact with site and where they come from. Analytic programs such as the free to use Google Analytics can be added to your pages to help provide this information and will provide the following stats:
- Visitor reporting
Analytics can give you an overview of the number of visitors, unique and returning visitors and the number of pages viewed for each visit. This is more than just how popular your site is, as high number of returning visitors shows a strong brand loyalty. If your returning visitors are low look at the content on your pages and introduce ways to draw visitors back, such as frequent updates or a blog/latest news column.
- Source of traffic
Analytics will show you where your traffic comes from, your incoming links from other sites and from paid advertising. It is vital to know this information so you can tell that any advertising money is working in the way you want it to. It can also show traffic that has come from search engines, commonly known as organic search traffic and where things are working well and where things need to be improved.
- Most popular pages
Using analytics you can determine which are the most popular pages, and more importantly which are the least popular. By monitoring this you can make improvements to, or drop the least popular pages. Most packages will provide a bounce rate, this is where a visitor will leave your site after visiting just one page. Look at pages with high bounce rates as this points to pages which are not meeting your visitors needs, make sure the information is useful and laid out in a clear, uncluttered way.
By looking at the analytics for browsers and operating systems you can see which browsers are the most commonly used for accessing your site and how many visitors are using mobile or tablets to view your website. This shows how to concentrate resources to develop the look and content for different devices and different size screens. For example if you find your bounce rate for tablet users is a lot higher than your average bounce rate then this may be due to your site behaving poorly in when viewed on a tablet and a need to improve the look and feel of your site for tablets.
Take all this information and use it for constant improvement of your website. Analysing your stats can lead to highly optimised site.