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Web Analytics Basics
In short, web analytics is the collection and measurement of Internet data. The purpose of collecting the data is to better understand why visitors stay on your site and to optimize the site for better traffic. Data can be collected not only about the site's current visitors, but the site's potential. The second type of data is called off-site web analytics. Based upon the current hype surrounding the site in the Internet community, you can measure your potential audience.
The first type of data helps you understand what visitors want once they are actually on your website. This also tells you which pages are appealing to visitors and whether your site has staying power or not. This is one of the main indicators of whether you need to better optimize and design your site.
Web analytics takes numerous factors into consideration. Data can be collected and analyzed by services or software, with each offering its own set of benefits. The following whitepapers will not only help you choose which features are right for you, but better comprehend the importance and results of web analytics.
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Basics and Future
In this section, we will be looking at two whitepapers, which work really well together. They are both written by experience web analytics experts from Web Analytics Demystified and help readers understand the place of web analytics within a business environment. Note that neither whitepaper requires registration to download or view.
The first is called “Building a Culture of Measurement." It takes a deeper look into myths behind web analytics and how businesses can best incorporate them. For anyone looking to understand analytics basics and common mistakes sites make, this is the perfect whitepaper to get you started.
The second whitepaper, “The Coming Revolution in Web Analytics," covers the future of web analytics and talks in depth about third generation digital analytics tools. It also covers the impact Google and Google Analytics has had on digital web analytics. This paper is geared towards larger businesses, but even smaller sites can learn a thing or two about the need to update technologies for better measurements.
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Advanced Web Metrics
The next two whitepapers on this list are by Brian Clifton of Advanced Web Metrics. The first is “Tracking Offline Marketing with Google Analytics." It covers how you can use web analytics tools to track offline marketing as well. This is perfect if you want to get even more from your web analytics data.
The second is “Understanding Web Analytics Accuracy." If you have ever wondered about the accuracy of your data, you need to read this whitepaper. It covers some of the major analytics tools and helps you understand any measurement discrepancies and how to better use the results you receive. Since every tool works differently, this is a must read for becoming comfortable with varying results. Both whitepapers can be downloaded for free after registration from Advanced Web Metrics.
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Whitepapers From Unica
For help deciding between software and services, Unica has partnered with Web Analytics Demystified to create “Software or Service: How to Make an Educated Choice about the Delivery Model for Your Digital Measurement Investment." While the name is long, it offers valuable insight on choosing the right tools for your needs.
The second whitepaper from Unica focuses on turning web analytics personal. The idea is to create a more personalized experience for individual users based upon the data you collect. The whitepaper “Oh Behave! The Impact of Behavorial Web Analytics on Marketing ROI" details the benefits of personalizing web analytics data to improve communications. This whitepaper is perfect for anyone looking to better market their websites with the data they already collect.
You must register on Unica's site in order to download either paper. Registration and the papers are free. Currently, both are near the top of the whitepaper list.
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Who Can Benefit
The above whitepapers are geared towards both beginners and professionals as well. The first two, which are best combined into one long whitepaper, are the best for beginners. However, both small and large businesses and websites can benefit from taking the time to read these web analytics whitepapers. If you are looking for a general summary of web analytics for business, this two page paper, “7 Secrets to Automate Analytics for Growth," may be the best place to start.
Some whitepapers do require you register on their site. Registration involves one of two things. The first requires you to set up an account with a user name and password. After creating your account, you are able to download the file. The second method requires you to enter your name, email address, job title and possible your home or business address. If you are not comfortable providing this information, but still want the whitepaper, enter a local business address. You do need to provide your real email address, however.
Data is collected simply to see which areas and job titles are interested in the provider's information. This helps them create future whitepapers and products geared towards their visitors' needs.
- Web Analytics Demystified, http://www.webanalyticsdemystified.com/content/white-papers.asp
- Search Engine Watch, http://whitepapers.searchenginewatch.com/marketing/internet_marketing/web_analytics