Google Analytics provides you with free custom reports that show you how people land on your blog or website, where they were referred from (like another blog, a direct google search, a link in an e-mail, etc.). It shows you what keywords people are using to find your blog, how many visitors you have, how long your visitors stay on your different posts and where your visitors are in the world. Google Analytics even lets you know the type of internet connections people use to look at your sites.
For example, I know that 8% of my visitors use Google Chrome, 44% use Firefox, etc. I know that 23 people have found my blog by clicking the link on Jennifer J. Bennett's blog and that those people spend an average of 1 minute and 35 seconds on my site. I know that overall the average reader spends 4 minutes and 18 seconds on my blog and that one reader reached my blog by searching about termites on Google. I also know that my contest post has gotten the most reads in the past month but that my post on being a more or a less was read for the longest amount of time.
Though you may feel this information is odd or more than you would ever want to know about your blog, it can be a powerful tool to reach more people and to build more effective content.
- Knowing what posts attract the most people can give you a clue as to what people might like to see more of
- Knowing your "high traffic" days tells you when to post valuable information (like you new book's release date)
- Reports breaking up your website traffic let you know if the same people are visiting your site day after day, or if you are actually reaching new traffic. Knowing this will help you know when to increase efforts to attract new readers.
So, are you an Analytics user? What other tools do you use?