Sunday, April 11, 2010

Website counter : an essential tool for online success

If you do not have an analytical tool (website counter) for your website then I think you are in the wrong business. Why? Because Internet marketing success nearly always requires that you know how your targeted visitors found your site and what they did when they got there.

There are some businesses who can live without a site counter such as associations that have an apparent reason to visit. Maybe they need to attend online courses for CEUs (certifications). Others who may not need website analytical tools are people who have large email lists that can be directed to a blog or static website to obtain something of value.

I use
Google Analytics for some of my websites. For some others I use StatCounter. But my favorite analytical tool is Sitemeter.

Usually I first check
referring URL to see where the visitors are coming from. If they came from a search engine, I want to know what key phrase they used to find my website. If I see a trend developing for a particular key phrase I often make a new web page dedicated to that phrase.

Below are some pictures of my visitor results for McHenry Online, a local related website for the county in northern Illinois where I used to live.


If they came in from another website, I want to revisit that site. Since blog commenting is a significant part of my overall strategy, I consider whether to make more comments at a blog because usually people come to my website when they see more about the brilliant person who commented. :) Well, at least they clicked my link.

Next, I will check my
visitor count for the past 7 days for websites that I check every week. Many sites I check only once a month. In that case I want to see the past 30 day numbers of visitors. I want to know about visitor number trends, up, down, level.


Next I will check the
entry page. Which pages are getting the most visitors? If you have advertisers, they will want to know those numbers before they pay to be on your site. I may want to improve some entry pages testing font colors, headings and copy.

I also like to see the
exit page tally. Where did they leave the site. Why did they leave the site from that page?. They may have a good reason (they bought something or signed up for something). Or maybe they just didn't find what they were looking for or get bored. I want to know why. I can never tell for sure, but I can get hints and do more changes and testing to try to find out.


I also want to get a snapshot of how my website is performing overall.

Here is a picture of the

Here is a list of items you can check with a good stat counter:

1. Summary
2. Who's On?
3. Traffic Prediction
4. Recent Visitors (details, referrals, World Map, Location, Out clicks and more)
5. Visits (by day, week month, year)
6. Visits and page views (what other pages did they visit?)
7. Page ranking (pages are ranked by the number of total visitors they get)

You can see there is a lot to learn about your website visitors. Your website counter can help you turn this information into more success for you.

Incidentally, all three of my stat counters are free.

Greg Cryns
Work At Home Profiles
Wahm Search Engine

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