Unlocking the Mystery of Web Analytics

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2018-09-16 7K 7 0 0

Unlocking the Mystery of Web Analytics - Description

Dave Hodgins. Data Coordinator & Web Developer. Library Research Service, Colorado State Library. www.lrs.org / www.libraryjobline.org. About Me. I am the Data Coordinator and Web Developer at Library Research Service (. ID: 667186 Download Presentation

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Unlocking the Mystery of Web Analytics




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Presentations text content in Unlocking the Mystery of Web Analytics

Slide1

Unlocking the Mystery of Web Analytics

Dave Hodgins

Data Coordinator & Web Developer

Library Research Service, Colorado State Library

www.lrs.org / www.libraryjobline.org

Slide2

About MeI am the Data Coordinator and Web Developer at Library Research Service (

www.lrs.org

).

I produce data and tools that empower libraries to improve the lives of all Coloradans.

Slide3

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Goals

Spark interest in beefing up your web analytics strategy, and take away one or two keywords/concepts that you will research further.

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Talk is cheap,

but so are

web analytics

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Web analytics offer you valuable insight into your users’ behaviors, wants, needs, etc.

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Web analytics are essential to successful goal/data driven decision making.

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We use Google Analytics because

It’s free

It’s well documented

It’s built & supported by one of the largest advertising companies

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We use awesome open source tools like

Laravel

and

Bootstrap

…because they make the process of producing cool and useful stuff…

…quick and (relatively) painless

.

Slide11

We roll our own analytics because

We want granular control over our data

We want to accurately track “tricky” stuff like direct file access

We can

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Server -> MySQL -> Laravel, fronted by Twitter Bootstrap

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Custom pivot table in LibraryJobline

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Tip: Measurable ~!= Useful

Just because you CAN track something doesn’t necessarily mean you SHOULD. Reduce signal-to-noise ratio by designing PURPOSEFUL data collection strategies.

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A Brief History of Web Analytics

Server-side

Server logs traffic

Log analyzer (poorly) parses data

Analytics are…generous

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A Brief History of Web Analytics

Client-side

JavaScript logs user interactions

Data are pre-processed and parsed by Google

Analytics are more accurate

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The Mighty Google Analytics Tracking Code

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A Brief Tour of Google Analytics

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Lets Make This Better

Slide22

Filters

Filtered Views allow you to exclude or modify data

before

they are saved to GA.

Since the manipulation occurs before storage,

you

cannot apply filters to historic data

!

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Filters

Filtered Views are handy when you want to

limit

a user’s access to a

subset

of your data.

Filters views

permanently

alter your data, so always maintain a

raw, unfiltered view

!

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Tip: Filter Early and Often

While GA provides methods for segmenting existing data, filters are often more convenient; but they

cannot

be applied to historic data. Anticipate future needs!

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Filters

Typical filters include:

Exclude data that doesn’t belong to your site (apply to every view)

Exclude internal traffic

Segment by sub/domain

Segment by content/services

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Filter Options

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Tip: Suck it Up and Learn Regular Expressions

Regular expressions are like keyword searching using Booleans, wildcards, and placeholders, except with the additional pain of a hot poker to the brain.

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Tip: Suck it Up and Learn Regular Expressions

Regular expressions let you do things like…

Find URLS that begin with 4 digits (e.g. WordPress permalinks): ^/\d{4}

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Tip: Suck it Up and Learn Regular Expressions

…and do things like like…

Find URLS for content in the “data and tools” section of the site: ^/data-tools

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Segments

Segments allow you to group data without making permanent changes to your GA profile.

Multiple segments can be viewed side by side, making comparisons easy.

You can create custom segments using the same criteria as filters.

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Tip: Filter vs Segment

Filter

Segment

Historic Data

No

Yes

Compare Data

No

Yes

Permanent Change

Yes

No

Restrict Access

Yes

No

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Events

Events are user activities that do not generate pageviews. They might include: clicking a link, changing a form value, toggling dynamic content, etc.

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Events

Events are essential for tracking user interactions in situations like…a single page website, and/or dynamic (AJAX) content

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Events vs Virtual Pageviews

A virtual pageview is a pageview that you manually create and send to GA.

They get lumped in with all the rest of your “normal” analytics data.

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Events vs Virtual Pageviews

Use virtual pageviews to track clicks and/or links to static files that cannot have the GA tracking code, such as…PDF, DOC, XLS, JPG, etc.

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Campaigns

A campaign is process for tracking EXTERNAL traffic. In it’s simplest form it is a series of parameters that you attach to URL’s and that are used by external sources.

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Campaigns

This is your querystring:

www.lrs.org/really-cool-article/?page=1

This is your querystring on GA campaigns:

www.lrs.org/really-cool-article?page=2&http://www.libraryjobline.org/job/4797/Parttime-25-hour-Concierge?ref=email&

utm_source

=newjobemail&

u

tm_medium

=email&

utm_campaign

=new%20job%20emails

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Campaigns

Track external and/or 3

rd

party content and links such as…

Email

Social media

Non-HTML content (PDF, Word, etc.)

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Campaigns

Campaigns are especially useful for social links because:

Links within mobile apps

do not

sent referrer data

Your links will (hopefully) be shared via other sites/networks

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Tip: Use Campaigns to AB/Split Test

Want to know which version of your newsletter/banner/etc. is most engaging? Campaign those suckers.

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Campaigns

NEVER use campaigns to track internal links

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Campaigns

Create campaigns using Google’s URL builder @

https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1033867

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Done!


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