The web analytics
implementation process can often be a long and grueling process which includes numerous resources and environments. When you're trying to focus on items such as accurately trying to integrate with a CMS or ecommerce solutions, forgetting the little things can often occur. Here are a few items worth double checking before you declare the implementation 100% complete (Download Checklist - PDF
Local IP Exclusion: Have you blocked local IP addresses as well as your vendors' so that their activity doesn't get included within your results? If your site receives tens of millions of page views monthly this won't have a huge impact, however for websites that receive only 1,000-10,000 page views, this will skew the data.
Not all analytics solutions automatically track activity on a sub domain of a website, so make sure you either have activated the sub domain in the code or in the analytics admin area. Here's how you do it in Google Analytics:
_uacct = "ACCOUNT NUMBER HERE";
_udn = "DOMAIN HERE";
: Contact forms and newsletter email registrations aren't the only way to measure the number of leads and conversions. Don't forget to apply appropriate tracking for links to emails and downloadable collateral. Here's an example of how to track a link in Omniture's SiteCatalyst:
onclick="s_linkType='o'; s_linkTrackVars='s_events'; s_linkTrackEvents='event#'; s_linkName='Contact us firstname.lastname@example.org'; s_events='event#'; s_lnk=s_co(this); s_gs(reportsuite);" href="mailto:email@example.com">firstname.lastname@example.org
Development vs. Production: During the publish from the development to the production environment make sure you're referencing the correct attributes and files on the production server.
Paid Search: Analytics providers often don't automatically attribute Paid keyword referrals to PPC unless there is an admin setting turned on or the referring URLs have appropriate parameters appended to them. Forgetting to setup Paid Search tracking can result in the inflation of natural/organic search referrals.
Tagging Error Pages: Error pages are part of your site as well and a great way to determine if there are any navigational issues throughout the website, so make sure they're tagged.
Want to know what users are looking for on your website? Without being able to identify the internal search queries, this task becomes increasingly difficult. EpikOne
has a useful post on how to track internal search queries using Google Analytics.
QA and Testing: This should be an obvious one not to forget but after a long implementation, QA and Testing often don't get integrated into the implementation plan.
There you have it, 8 items to permanently add to your checklist for a proper web analytics implementation.
August 14, 2007
Download the Checklist - PDF!
Manoj has been in the Digital marketing industry for over 10 years with experience at some of Canada's largest companies: WestJet and Shaw Communications. Manoj first started in the search marketing industry with Enquiro Search Solutions, where he spearheaded web analytics, SEO Training and the development of cutting edge search marketing solutions for clients. Manoj is also an entrepreneur in the Mobile and Local Deals space.
Manoj is a Professional Speaker having participated at events such as Web Analytics Congress (Amsterdam), Emetrics, Web Analytics Xchange, WebTrends Engage, Internet Marketing Conference, Social Media Innovation Summit and Search Engine Strategies. He has also contributed to several leading online publications such as: Search Engine Land, Marketing Pilgrim, WebProNews, Search Engine Guide and the Web Analytics Assocation.
He founded and successfully sold Web Analytics World (a top 100 Digital Marketing Blog – http://adage.com/power150) and was voted #39th Most Influential Digital Marketer in North America – 2009 (see: www.Invesp.net)