Web Analytics Master Certification

After completing a rigorous semester of training in web analytics from the guru of all web analytics gurus, Avinash Kaushik and his partner in Market Motive crime, and previous founder of ClickTracks, John Marshall, I am very happy to announce that I am Web Analytics Master Certified.

Web Analytics Master CertifiedNot only does this mean that we can help you figure out what area of your business to focus on and how you are really doing online, it means we can help you run Google experiments, advise you on the best search strategies (paid search and search engine optimization) and make the recommendations that will help you succeed on the Internet, i.e. increase your bottom line.

We look forward to working with you to drive more business and awareness to your website and brand. Please call us to schedule your web analytics review today. (415) 305-6403.

What is your biggest question about your website?

How to add Google Analytics to your website or blog

Remember, without measurement, there is no success. You have to measure and track whatever you are doing to know how much progress you are making.

Without a goal, there is no where to go, no finish line, no end, and without benchmarks you have no idea where you are, or where the starting line is. So, let’s see where we are in terms of traffic to our websites and blogs and then set some goals so that we can start our journey to accomplish them.

tracking visits to your website or blog with Google Analytics

Below is a step by step process for putting a Google Analytics tracking code on your site or blog. If you don’t have a website or blog, then this post is probably not for you, but it you are interested in learning more about how to track visits to your site or blog, for free and with less than 15 minutes of set up time, please follow the instructions below.

  1. If you don’t have a blog, set one up at http://www.blogger.com
    You may need to create a Google Account to do this.
  2. Once you have set up your blog. Create a few posts or entries about something you are interested in.
  3. View your blog and copy the URL (from the address bar) of your blog

    Copy your URL

  4. Open a new tab or window and go to http://analytics.google.com and press the blue “Access Analytics” button

    Access Google Analytics

  5. Once you are logged in, look for the “Add Website Profile” link

    Add a Website Profile link in Google Analytics

    2011-11-11 Update: If you don’t see the Add Website Profile link, look on the right hand side of the screen for “My Analytics Accounts: Select an account” and a drop down menu. Select “Create New Account” at the bottom of the drop down menu.

  6. Click the Sign Up >> button
  7. Paste your URL into the Add a Profile for a new domain field. It is important that you paste YOUR URL, i.e. only a website address or blog address that you have control of. You can NOT track a website or blog that you do not control. You may only track your own sites and blog.

    Add a profile for a new domain

  8. Click the Continue >> button
  9. Enter your Last Name and First Name and select your country, then click the Continue >> button
  10. Agree to the terms and conditions by checking the box and then click the Create New Account >> button
  11. Copy the script code on the following screen where you see “2. Paste this code onto your site.”

    Paste Analytics Code

  12. In blogger, go back to your blog and get to the dashboard, i.e. click new post or edit posts. In your website, you will be copying the script into each page, just before the closing </head> tag. If you have a website set up with a template, you may only need to do this once in a footer file. (If you are not using Blogger, skip to step 15.)
  13. In Blogger, click on the Design tab, and then
  14. Click on the Edit HTML link

    Design Tab on Blogger with Edit HTML Link

  15. Do a find [on a Windows machine, hold down the Ctrl + F keys at the same time, on a Mac hold down Command +F] for </head> in the HTML code page.  Add a line break before you paste so that it works well.

    Find the close head tag
    Analytics script pasted into blog

  16. Save the template and/or your work if you are not in blogger.
  17. Go back to Google Analytics, which you still have open in another window or tab, and click “Save and Finish”
  18. Alert triangle showing that the analytics are not running yet.You will see a yellow triangle with an exclamation point in it. IMPORTANT: It takes 24 hours for the tracking to start happening. If everything is working correctly, in an hour or two, you should see a clock symbol, meaning that Google is “waiting for data.” Check back in 24 hours to make sure the tracking is working and ask your friends to visit your site or blog so that you can see some activity. When everything is working correctly, you’ll see a green checkmark next to the site when you next log into Google Analytics.

If you have any questions about any of the above steps, please leave a comment. Happy tracking!

Facebook or Twitter?

Yesterday I posted about my thoughts on the community and size of Facebook versus Twitter based in response to a recent blogpost touting Facebook being better for business than Twitter.  That was reason number one.  Here is reason number two:

2.  Analytics
Yes, it is important to track your ROI (return on investment and now also known as return on influence).  Yes, Facebook provides interesting analytical data for business owners inside of the Facebook site and there isn’t anything coming directly from Twitter to show statistics yet.  However, just because Twitter doesn’t include an analytics package service on the site, doesn’t mean there is no way to see data about your twitter profile and how many people are following you.

Just as there are numerous developers creating applications for use on Facebook, there are also numbers developers building tools that work off the Twiiter API.

For example, you can track how many people followed any link you posted on Twitter through services like http://tr.im and http://bit.ly.  There are ways to see where your followers are tweeting from, tools to track demographics, how quickly people grew their followers and thousands more.  Granted, it takes a twitter-nut to find all of the relevant tracking tools, but saying there aren’t any is incorrect. Sysomos, for example offers a wide range of analytics on social media. It’s not free, but there are plenty of others if you have the time to try them out.

Twitter Users By Age Group

Do Teens Really Not Use Twitter?

As Chris Brogan says, the first one there wins the game, but what if the game isn’t whether to use Facebook or Twitter?  What if you really need to participate on both?

A Beneficial Merger

Client site A was competing with site B for traffic about a similar topic. The two sites were competing for search results and traffic to promote a similar physical location. Site B was a bit out of date, but had been on the Internet a lot longer than site A. The information on site B complements the information on site A. Client A had a good relationship with the owner of site B, so we decided to pursue merging the two sites into one. The final merged site is still in development, but the immediate result after setting up a redirect from site B’s domain to site A’s domain is a good increase in traffic to site A. Client A is happy, which means we are happy and more importantly people looking for information on this topic will only need to go to one site instead of two.

Additional traffic in 2009 compared to 2008 as a result of redirect
Traffic in 2009 compared to 2008


Daily visits doubled and tripled after redirect
Daily visits doubled and tripled after June 19th


Monitor your analytics and statistics log files to see the impact of any significant changes you make to your site, marketing plans and overall online presence. Sometimes you may be surprised by the result. (Hint: Results are not always good, but mistakes will help you learn.)