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Web Analytics

The activities associated with the study of the traffic of the web site and the behavior of visitors is known as web analytics. In the context of e-commerce, this refers to how the data collected about web sites and traffic is used to determine which aspects of the site has a more impact towards achieving business goals.

Many different data is collected during web analytics, the most common being web traffic reports. Other information collected may include e-mail response rates, direct mail campaign data, sales and lead information, and etc. Once these data is collected, they are compared against key performance indicators to determine their success. These in turn are used to improve the web site and the marketing campaign.

There are two main technological approaches to web analytics. The first approach is log file analysis, where the log files that record server transactions are studied. The second approach is page tagging, which uses JavaScript on pages to notify a third party server when a page is rendered by a browser.

Log File Analysis

Web servers' use log files to record all transactions they carry out. By studying these log files it is possible to get data on the popularity of a web site. In the early days of log file analysis two metrics were introduced. These were the page views and the visits (sessions). A page view was defined as a request made to the web server for a page. A session was defined as a sequence of requests from a uniquely identified client that expired after a certain amount of inactivity. Even though page views and visits are still used as metrics, they are considered as unsophisticated measurements.

The task became more difficult with the emergence of spiders, robots, web proxies and dynamic IP's. The log analyzers responded by tracking visits through cookies, and ignoring requests by known spiders. Caching also represents a problem because cached pages will not generate a server request. Even though caching can be disabled from the server, it degrades the performance for the user.

Page Tagging

In the beginning, Web counters were images included in a web page that showed the number of times the image had been requested. This was an estimate of the number of visits to that page. Later this concept evolved to include a small invisible image instead of a visible one, and, by using JavaScript, to pass along with the image request certain information about the page and the visitor. Professional web analytics companies can then process this information and generate the required reports and statistics.

To uniquely identify users, their visits and subsequent visits cookies are assigned. This is also managed by the web analytics service.

With the development of the web analytics processes, new software was also developed to automate the analysis process, making it less prone to errors.

At Rankings Guaranteed, we offer hosted and customized web analytics solutions to search engine optimization firms, web marketing firms and pay per click consultants. We use the newest technologies and software to carry out our web analytics solutions, guaranteeing our clients timely and accurate reports they can rely on.

You too can get the benefit of our expertise. Please feel free to request for a quotation. It's free and there are no obligations attached
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