It’s a real question.
The other day I was looking at a site for a client and when I looked under the hood I was surprised to see (okay, not that surprised) that they had never hooked the site up with analytics.
This means they know basically NOTHING about what’s been happening on their website for the past three years.
Sure, they could dig out the server logs and run them through a simple program, but this isn’t going to tell them much.
I was disappointed, selfishly, because I always enjoy sharing before-and-after stats with clients.
Getting analytics going isn’t hard. You can sign up for the free Google Analytics product and have the code running and collecting data within 20 minutes or so. Maybe an hour if you get confused halfway through.
Once it’s running, you don’t have to touch it. You don’t even have to look at your stats if you don’t want to. But they’ll be steadily collecting as the days, weeks, months and years pass.
There’s gold in those stats.
If you’re one of those people who haven’t signed up for an analytics program and installed the tiny bit of code on your website, it’s time to make a change.
Here’s a great free resource to help you get this done. Eugen Oprea has a free Google Analytics course that walks you through setup and understanding the data.
It’s at http://www.eugenoprea.com/google-analytics/. Go sign up now.
It’s free, and I don’t get anything for sending you there.
Another analytics resource is GetClicky. This is a great little service that gives you real-time, as-it-happens data on your website. You can actually see the clicks individual users make as they go through your website.
I like this service, which is paid, because it makes me look at my visitors differently. I learn a lot by putting myself in their shoes and wondering, for example, “why did they click that link, not the one above it?”
Sometimes I learn a lot just by seeing someone go to a page I know needs work, and then they disappear from the site instead of staying engaged. Kinda brings focus…
You can get GetClicky here, and yes, that’s an affiliate link because I think it’s a great service and it’s helped me fix one of my sites, so I can recommend it confidently.
What holds you back from installing analytics? Or from making good use of it? Share in the comments.
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