It amazes me how many small businesses have websites but don’t actually monitor their visitors. How do you know what’s working and what isn’t if you don’t have any form of analytics set up?
I use several analytics tools to monitor my and my customers sites:
Jetpack for wordpress – this is a wordpress plugin but you need to have a wordpress.com account. Once you have authorised your site through wordpress.com you then have site stats available on your dash board. These include bar charts split by day, week or month showing the number of views which gives a very visual view of any spikes in traffic. Hovering over a bar will show you whether you made any posts on that day. Below the bar chart are listings for referrers, top posts and pages, search engine terms and clicks. I love this because I can jump in at any time in the day and see real time what has been viewed on my site for that day or click on the charts for historical data. I use this tool everyday for quick updates.
Google Analytics – For more detailed data on a weekly basis I use google analytics which I set on my wordpress sites with the Ulitmate Google Analytics plugin. I love the updates that have been made recently which are much more visual, like the visitor’s flow which shows you how visitors work through your site and where they drop off. For example on www.lookingstylish.co.uk I can see that if visitors read my most popular post the majority of them go on to read additional posts.
ManageWP – The third tool I use is part of the ManageWP software which is a central place to manage all of my wordpress sites. Whilst this is a paid for tool unlike the previous two, it performs many functions as well as SEO monitoring. With this you enter the url of the site you want to monitor and all of the keywords you are optimising and it will give you the current rank for each of your keywords as well as last week, last month and two months ago. In addition it tells you how many backlinks a page has, and provides social media data about how many tweets, likes etc a page has.
Whilst it is time consuming to work through these analytics it’s pointless spending time updating a site if it’s not getting any traffic. I see small businesses who have spent literally thousands on having a website built and have no idea if it’s actually getting any traffic. And worse many of them have no keyword strategy and no idea how to implement one.
If you would like more information on monitoring the success of your website, or creating an SEO strategy, please get in touch.