Loving Google Analytics
I arrived fashionably late to the Google Analytics party. Install it on a site and immediately begin watching traffic patterns, clicks, navigation patterns, and bounce rates. It has powerful, extremely customizable reporting, and oh yeah...it's free.
Why is any of this important?
Let's say you have a page that is an entry page to your business's reservation form, and 30% of users opt to not even continue to the form, but choose to go to another page, then you are losing revenue. Sometimes users will leave the page. Other times users will even leave your site. That is not a win.
How to improve click through performance?
Change the page content and layout and watch the stats. If you make a change and more people are clicking where you want them to click, then you are doing something that will get your message across to more people. It might get more people to convert to being customers, which will make you more money. Look at one of Google's great features, called the site overlay. This allows you to see where users have clicked as you navigate throughout your site display in percentages.
Does this sound like something that can help you and your business?
The thing that Google Analytics drives home for me is that it is not about me or how I perceive a page should look or work. You watch how users use your content, and then you know if what you're doing is working. It tells you on a page by page basis how many clicks you're getting. On the first site I installed it on, I was fascinated with what people looked at on the site. It showed me one page that was visited more that twice as much as any other page (and it wasn't the home page). I knew the page was important, and contained valuable information, but I didn't know it was that powerful. So I changed the navigation and added a big "reserve now button" on the page. This increased traffic to the reservation page which will end up making the business more money.