educational

Tackling Throughput With Analysis Tools

Stephen Yagielowicz

Website traffic analysis is not just about “how many people visited my site?” but about where they came from, how they found out about you, whether or not you satisfied their needs, how much you earned from them, and much more. It is a medical diagnosis of your website’s health, along with advice and tools for improving your patient’s vigor.

When discussing traffic analysis tools, it is impossible to overlook Google Analytics (analytics.google.com), a comprehensive solution for monitoring and maximizing traffic flow and monetization. Google Analytics integrates with Google Webmaster Tools and AdWords marketing to identify the sources of traffic to your site, their path through it, and their destination upon leaving. This free, feature-packed suite can help you succeed.

It is a medical diagnosis of your website’s health, along with advice and tools for improving your patient’s vigor.

While some operators prefer to rely on the accuracy and privacy of server-based stats, these packages lack the features, integration and enhanced reporting of Google Analytics, which also offers a major benefit to adult affiliates, as it can be added to sites that are not on your own server, such as a white label cam site or Hosted Tube site, providing detailed (and impartial) insights into the traffic that you are sending to your sponsor.

But Analytics is not Google’s only traffic analysis tool.

Google AdWords’ Keyword Tool (adwords.google.com/select/keywordtool) offers tremendous insight into what consumers are searching for today; revealing global as well as local search volumes and other metrics for a range of related search terms and phrases.

According to Google, its Keyword Tool can help build more effective keyword lists by identifying keyword and ad group ideas that users might not think of while creating their campaigns. The tool enables users’ to begin with broad terms, narrowing keywords to specific phrases, until very granular niches and search queries are targeted.

One great application of this tool is for estimating total traffic volumes and your own potential share of a specific market for business planning and traffic budgeting purposes.

For example, Google reports that “big boobs” gets 6,120,000 monthly queries, while “large breasts” receives 2,740,000. This data indicates more interest in the former phrase, which leads to increased competition for it. Some marketers may then seek to target the latter phrase as an easy way to achieve higher rankings, but a look at its related searches show many searches pursuing bras for large breasts — indicating a high percentage of women looking for supportive garments, rather than men seeking bouncy bazonkas — providing a good reason to target the more competitive phrase. This example illustrates the range of uses that traffic analytics tools enable, and the depth of data they can reveal.

Of course, Google isn’t the only name in website traffic analytics, with Open Source competitor Piwik.org providing a popular alternative — while enterprise-level solutions such as those offered by Webtrends.com offer all the visitor data you may ever need.

At the end of the day, traffic analysis tools are like online billing companies: each has its unique benefits and strengths — and using more than one is often the best way to go.

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