Running a business without knowing what website analytics do can hold you back. If you’re not currently making the most of your analytics, you’re not alone. Plenty of website owners have analytics, but just let them run in the background collecting information.
However, having analytics isn’t useful if you’re not checking them and using them to their full potential.
To really understand how visitors are using your site, you need to look deeper than page views.
Understanding Your Sources
By taking a look at where those views are coming from, you can get a better idea of what the viewer came to your site for. Do most of your views come from social media links? This can indicate that you may see a better response by running promotions on social media. Are they coming from Google maps? Perhaps giving more real estate on how to find your business and contact information on your homepage.
Knowing the source of your web traffic is important to any business, because it helps you understand the visitor’s purpose in coming to your site. You can also track whether or not your social media and email campaigns are working and if you’re getting ROI from pay-per-click advertising.
Another great way to analyze your views is by investing in a bit of research into how people look at your website. In general, a visitor looks at the top of the page, then skims down the middle of the page with decreasing interest the lower they get. You can alter that through changes in site design, or use it to your advantage by making sure the most important aspects of a page are located above the fold.
Eye tracking can be a big investment, but it can help ensure your customers are finding what they need and not missing the most important aspects of your site.
Following the Customer
Another great tool you can put into your arsenal is the ability to follow a browser as it looks at your website. This can show areas of your site that you need to draw more attention to and where you can improve the opportunity for viewers to become customers on pages they particularly like.
A big issue that many sites run into without realizing is having too many pages on their site. It's tempting to provide a specific page for everything you want listed, but this isn't necessarily the best option. Each extra page you adds runs the risk that a customer will miss that page, and thus miss being able to make that purchase.
By tracking page traffic, you can determine if certain pages aren't getting traffic and need to be combined with other pages or eliminated all together. This can help you reduce website size, which might be able to save you some hosting fees.
Analyzing your website is about more than just looking at how many views you get, it's about being able to understand where those views are coming from, what visitors are looking at, and why they're looking there. By using website analytics to your advantage, you can ensure an improved return on investment.