jebswebs

accessible and universal web design, development, and consultation

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Google Analytics

Google Analytics logoGoogle Analytics is a free service provided by Google to help web designers and web site owners get a better handle on who is visiting their web sites and how to better marketing their business or organization.

Here’s how it works… jebswebs puts a small bit of JavaScript code on each page of the website that you wish to track and Google does the rest. Each time someone visits a page on the website, Google “grabs” and records certain information about the visit and assigns a “cookie” to the browser. The information is stored in a Google Analytics account database and, at anytime, can be retrieved in the form of a report. The Google Analytic report will show an aggregated view of the activity on your website in the graphic and tabular form.

The information gathered by Google includes: date and time of the visit; length of the visit; if the visitor came from a referral website and which one (i.e., a direct link, or from a search engine); how long they stayed on each page and where they went after they left that page. The system also will track where the visitor is located (via IP address – so at best you get country of origin), and a little bit about their computer operating system including which browser, graphics settings and plugins they used to access you web site. This information helps our designer know how to optimize the site to your most common type of visitor. For example, if most of your visitors are using their “smart phone” to access your website, we may want to re-design the site to include additional settings optimize to that screen size.

There are two ways to set this up. jebswebs can add you to our current Google Analytics account and send you reports, or you, the client, can create your own account with Google and send us the code that needs to be put on the web pages.

jebswebs charges only for the time it takes to set up – and that depends on the number of pages on the site. The system works with traditional static web pages as well as content management systems like Joomla, Drupal and WordPress.

We should note that if you use our hosting plan (via Maine Hosting Solutions) we also include AWStats, a server-side logging and statistics program. The AWStats reports are great to use in concert with Google Analytics. As one of our clients, we can arrange to send you both reports each month.

Special Services provided by Google Analytics

If you are using your web site to market products and services, Google Analytics offers a number of special features that allow you to track marketing campaigns or track sales. Contact us for more information about these services.

Limitations

Google Analytics uses a small bit of JavaScript on each web page to “grab” the information about the visitor. However, some people using the Web have chosen to dis-enable JavaScript in their browser. In these cases, Google Analytics will not be able to grab information about the visitor. So not every visitor to your site will be recorded by Google Analytics. If you are using our hosted account, the AWStats package will still record the visit.

There are also some folks who are very concerned about privacy and Google requires that sites using Google Analytics have a privacy policy. We will help you write one for your web site. Google also provides an option for people to opt-out of the Google Analytics program by installing an add-on to their browser. Additional information about the Google Analytics Opt-out Browser Add on may be view here.

I want it! What do I do now?

Contact jebswebs today and we will get your Google Analytics account set up right away!