Jolina Pettice

SES Session: Meet the Web Analytics Players

SES Chicago In a morning session, here at SES Chicago, attendees had the chance to learn from and interact with folks from the world of Web Analytics.

In particular, if you’ve been wondering what’s new with Google Analytics, I’ve got the scoop for you.

Kristen Nomura, Sr. Account Manager at Google Analytics briefed us on 3 new features and why they are important.

1. Internal Site Search Now Available
Internal Site Search and reporting is now available. This allows you to gain more insight into:
-what keyword phrase was searched
-who searched
-when did they search and
-from what pages are visitors searching most often

This data can definitely take analytics to the next level, if you’re not already tracking this data, by understanding what the visitor is looking for after reaching the site.

In particular, knowing on which page most visitors are using the search tool can indicate page(s) on the website in which the visitor feels ‘stuck’ and cannot find the information he/she is looking for. Understanding this information can help you update content, layout and/or offers to help the visitor find the desired information.

2. Event Tracking for Rich Internet Applications
This new feature allows for tracking on flash/ajax pages without the URL having to change.

For example, if a user is clicks on a demo to experience different settings on a vacuum, traditional tracking would have only allowed for page view tracking. i.e. if there are 3 different demo buttons on a page, the analytics would not have told you what users were clicking on most often. Now, we know. The user(s) may be clicking on 1 of the 3 demos and ignoring the rest.

3. Outbound Link Tracking – TAGLESS
Let’s take the website as an example. Quite a number of folks go to the website with the intent to locate a local dealer. Unless the URLs are tagged, once the visitor left the website, you didn’t know where they went.

With the new javascript tag – ga.js – Google Analytics will tell you where the visitor is going – i.e. which local BMW dealer website – without tagging.

The move to the new ga.js tag will not be mandatory, but is the backbone of both the event tracking and outbound link tracking.

As well, it offers the following benefits:
-Faster, Smaller Source File
-Increased readability for professional developers
-Auto-detection of server protocol (http or https)
-Eliminates security-related issues
-Faster download for non-secure pages

New feature #1 is available now and new features #2 & #3 are coming soon.

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