Go over slide content. Do an example of actual segmenting – Landing Pages report and look at search, direct, and referral traffic. Who’s more likely to bounce?
Benchmarks help us put into context the data we’re analyzing. Without them, we can’t tell if we are making improvement or not. For example, my site had 10,000 visits last month. So what? Well, there are two types of benchmarks – internal and external.
Don’t get these two definitions of goals confused!
Describe both. Remember that conversions are just a desired action. So what’s the main purpose of a library’s website? What’s the secondary purposes? That’s stuff we’ll cover tomorrow, however what you need to start thinking about now is: why does your site exist? What functions does your site provide to the end users?
Conversion rates will be your best friend in goal reporting.Put the number of conversions into context.For the debate, total visits implies looking at all interactions, but unique visits more closely aligns to individual users.
Provide examples of each for examples. Not all goals fit nicely into the Goal Report.
What’s in a goal report? Again, it depends which one you choose: URL Destination, Visit Duration, Pages/Visit, or Event. However, most will include
Why is it important to understand the related sites? Because these are additional clicks you need to track to understand the complete usage of your library’s website.
Why? Because content audits tell you what content already exists and how well it is preforming.
Don’t get lost in the data. Remember to keep this simple and practical enough to make it useful.
This information may also be listed in your library’s mission statement or strategic plans.
This mission statement will influence the purpose and goals of this library’s website.
The site’s purpose defines what is “success” on a website. Website has to preform to the ideals created in the purpose.
Note that objective is often interchanged with the word, goal.
Open up GA and show this answer in the demo system.
Open up GA and show this answer in the demo system.
Discussion Point: How can we measure this?
Wa mw 2013
DEVELOPING A WEB ANALYTICS STRATEGYFOR YOUR LIBRARY:USING DATA TO MEASURE SUCCESSTabatha Farney & Nina McHaleALA MidwinterJanuary 25 2013Seattle, Washington #alamwwaSlides: slideshare.net/ninermac
Our Agenda• Introductions• Core Concepts: • Basic Metrics • Goals, KPIs, and Conversions • Segmenting versus Filtering • Benchmarking • Event Tracking• Converting Purpose into Analytics goals
Introductions• In thirty seconds: • Your name • Your job title • Your institution • What do you want to get out of this preconference?
Web Analytics Strategy: I Want One!• Google Analytics, or AWStats, or Piwik—or use of any of these individual tools—is NOT a web analytics strategy.• A monthly or quarterly report of visits and page views sent to the director or the board is NOT a web analytics strategy. A web analytics strategy is the structured process of identifying and evaluating your key performance indicators on the basis of an organization’s objectives and website goals—the desired outcomes, or what you want people to do on the website.
Some WA Limitations and Caveats, 1/2• Avinash Kaushik: “It’s like reading tea leaves.”• Issues surrounding the use of IP addresses as identifiers: • Geographical location by ISPs (and DHCP) • Library/campus network architecture (also including DHCP) • Information about specific, individual users not available• Privacy: while most tools don’t collect personally identifying information (PII), it’s a good idea to have a policy and make a statement to your users about what you’re collecting.• Web analytics tools are designed with commercial sites in mind; we’ll hit library-specific pitfalls to watch out for throughout!
Some WA Limitations and Caveats, 2/2• Different analytics tools will use different terms to describe similar concepts (The Digital Analytics Association provides “official” non-proprietary definitions—see “More Info” slide.)• …but most importantly: Don’t shy away from these limitations! Understandthem and explain them to others and make the best effort to know what exactly web analytics can (and cannot) reveal about the use of your site(s).
Before we get started…• Log in to your web analytics tool, if you are able to access it, AND• Log in to this generic account Google Analytics account at googleanalytics.com: • user ID: litawa2012 • Password: wamonkey
DEVELOPING AWEB ANALYTICS STRATEGYThe Core Concepts and Metrics
Core Concepts and Metrics• Visits vs. Unique Visits vs. Page Views• Visitor Types: New and Returning• User Technology• Geographic Data• Entry and Exit Pages• Referral Sources• Bounce Rate• Engagement Metrics
Visits• Visits are interactions on a website from an individual browser over a specified period of time.• Watch for typical patterns; what does a “normal” day or week look like for your library? • Are there typical heavy/light use days? • Do busy hours mirror busy hours of the physical library? • Is there an “after dinner” spike in evenings?• Physical library analogy: gate counts (more on this shortly…)
Page Views• Commonly referred to as “hits”• The number of times that visitors access a single web page or online document on your site.• Analytics provides detailed information for every page that’s tracked on your site (more about what’s tracked later…)• This data is often the most-requested by non-IT colleagues and/or web content creators• The “Long tail” of library web site content: • Home page always the highest hit • Hours, databases, popular services, etc. in 2nd-5th place • There is generally a sharp drop—the “long tail”—thereafter
Bounce Rate• The percentage of visitors who “bounced” from, or left, the site after viewing only a single page or who stayed on your site for only a short period of time.• A good bounce rate, per Avinash Kaushik, is less than 35%• Library site bounce rates tend to be higher, partially because: • Labs/commons areas that have home pages set as default in web browsers can have a negative effect on bounce rates; • Library sites, unlike ecommerce sites, typically WANT to send users to other sites, like the catalog, databases, ebooks, electronic reserves.• What’s your bounce rate? How has it changed in the past year? If it has, can you think of reasons for the change?
Visitors• Individuals who come to your web site(s) via a web browser.• As we discussed earlier, no personally identifying information is collected about visitors; data collected is largely anonymous.• Physical library analogy: people who activate your gate by passing through it. Source: www.lib.uwaterloo.ca/newsitems/porter_security.html
Unique Visitors• Unique visitors are visitors who are counted only once, regardless of how many times they access your website in a specific period of time.• To determine unique visitors, your web analytics tool tracks all your visitors by either tracking their IP address or installing a cookie on a visitor’s computer the first time that person visits your site.• Back to our gate count analogy: a person would be a unique visitor to a physical library if s/he were somehow “tagged” on arrival for the first time today, and NOT counted when re- entering on the same day.
Which to Use: Visitors or Unique Visitors?• It depends: which metric you choose will depend on what you’re trying to accomplish with your data• Using “Unique Visitors” will likely give you a more accurate count of “How many people?” are using your site• Using “Visitors” will likely give you a higher count* *Use for LibQUAL/board reports! ;)
Visitor type: New and Returning• Visited are classified as “new” or “returning,” meaning, quite simply, whether they have been to your site before or not.• Neither new nor returning is more important or necessarily better than the other; however, this metric is still useful for tracking trends in use: • A high percentage of new visits indicates that a site is having a great deal of traffic driven to it, which is a positive. • A high rate of returning visitors also indicates that library users are loyal and frequently return to engage with web content, which is also desirable.• What are your new versus returning visitors numbers?
User Technology Information• Browser and Operating System: • Specific versions of browsers and OSs • Screen resolution, screen colors, Flash versions, and Java support• Network: • Services provider • Host name• What are your top three OSs and browsers? Compare to two years ago; what trends do you notice?
Geographic Data• This metric reports the physical location of your users. (Everyone you ever show this to will love it!)• Analytics tools determine geographical location for users by IP address. • Why is this problematic?• Libraries tend to have a regional cluster around a campus or within the city/county • Academics: Do you have remote campuses/overseas students? • Publics: Are there any interesting patterns across the city, county, or area you serve?
Entry and Exit Pages• Entry (or landing) and exit pages show how users move through the Internet, arriving at and then departing from library sites. • Entry=the first page a visitor comes to; • Exit=the last page a visitor is on before leaving your site.• Some notes about exit pages in a library web environment: • Again, library web sites are directories to other sources • While ecommerce sites might view exits as a failure, that’s not necessarily the case with library sites • We can gauge our success in directing our users to other library resources by tracking outbound links—more on this later!
Referral Sources• Shows you how your visitors became your visitors by reporting the URLs of the sites they were on when they clicked to enter your site• Typical referrers for libraries: • Catalog pages • Scheduling software (Evanced) • Subscribed content (article databases, Overdrive) • Parent institutions (college, municipality/county)• What are your top three referrers? Any surprises in the list?
Engagement Metrics• Engagement metrics attempt to provide insight into how far users are delving into your site• Pages Per Visit • The number of pages in your site viewed by a visitor during a single visit• Visit Duration/Time on Site • The length of time, typically expressed in minutes, that a visitor spends on your site for a visit.• While these are handy metrics, any serious qualitative inquiry about your site should include usability testing with users.
DEVELOPING AWEB ANALYTICS STRATEGYAdvanced Concepts and Metrics
Segmenting or Filtering?• Why do either? Helps focus on the data that really matters. Example: Removing staff computers or focusing on remote users.• How do they differ? • Filtering removes data from the collection process. • Segmentation removes unwanted data at the report level.
Benchmarking Benchmark = A measurement to compare changeWhy Use Benchmarks? • Gives you a target to reach • Helps identify reachable goalsTwo Types of Benchmarks • Internal - compare with previous internal data • External - compare with other similar websitesHow to set? • Internal - Use a comparable time range of data. • External -Exchange data with similar libraries or use an outside service (Alexa, Quantcast, Compete, Hitwise)
Event TrackingEvent = An action that does not generate a page view.Events include: • Interactions with Videos/Audio files Event Tracking is the process of having your WA tool track • Downloading documents (PDFs, anyone?) identified events. • Embedded widgets • Outbound Links • Many dynamic elementsDoes your tool track events? <img src=“image_name.jpg" alt=“description” onClick=“_gaq.push(*‘_trackEvent’, ‘event • Need to track all your data! category’, ‘event action’, ‘event name’+);”/>How to Track Events? • Typically have to add tracking code to the event
WA GoalsGoal [gohl]noun1. The anticipate result or objective; often used in planning anddevelopment.2. A web analytics metric called a conversion. Conversion = A desired action on a site.
Macro or Micro Conversions? Macro Micro Conversions = Conversions = Measure the Measure the primary purpose secondary of the site. purposes of the site.
Conversion Rate Desired Action Total Visits or Unique Visits = conversion rate Conversion rates put desired actions in context! They show the percentage of how often the desired action occurs. Total Visits or Unique Visits Debate? Most of the time your tool already decides for you.
Goal Reporting and Conversion TypesConversions can be anything, but most tools’ “Goal Reports”focus on:1. URL Destination – Target end/exit page2. Visit Duration – Length of stay3. Pages per Visit – Site engagement4. Event – Target action on site
Breaking Down the Goal Report Goal Reports = Conversion ReportsGoal Reports include:• Total number of conversions• Conversion rate• Assigned value amount (optional)• Abandonment rate• Funnel (only for URL Destination URLs)
Why Use Goal Reports? Your tool does the tracking! Unfortunately… • Not all tools come with Goal Reports • Goal Reports can be limiting – doesn’t fit all conversions
What about KPIs? KPI = Key Performance IndicatorWhat do they do?Measure outcomes based on your site’s objectives/goalsHow do I implement them? Typically, you use conversion rates. So Goal Reports or however you track conversions. Remember KPIs will be unique to the site!
Activity! The Directions• Form groups of 3-4 members• Your group will assigned a scenario (coming on the next slide)To finish this activity, be prepared to:1. Come up with an answer to the question/request for data;2. Explain why/how your group came up with that conclusion.
How would you answer these requests?1. Reference librarians ask: “Where should we implement a chat reference widget on the web site?”2. Communications/marketing asks: “Is our Facebook presence successful?”3. The library director asks: “What are the busiest hours on our web site?”4. The web developers ask: “We want to develop a mobile app. Which platform should we support?”5. The Web Team asks: “Which pages on the site are the poorest performing, and why?”
DEVELOPING AWEB ANALYTICS STRATEGYUnderstanding Your Website
The Triforce of Understanding Your Site Users Site’s Purpose Organization Content Goals
Where to Start?Take Inventory of your Website Identify the website and any related sites Locate any related goals or strategic plan to site Understand the site’s user groups Do a content audit Determine the purpose of the site (primary and secondary)
Inventory Process: ID the Related Sites Example of related sites: • Library catalog • Databases • Journal Search (Serials Solutions) • Prospector (cooperative library catalog) • ILLiad • LibGuides • Facebook • Flickr • University’s website
Approaching a Content Audit• Create a list of content - all the webpages, documents, and media (such as videos or audio files) Most accurate count of content comes directly from the web server• Decide how you want to evaluate the content Most measure basic usage of the page, but other factors you may want to look at are: • Last update to the content • Time on page • Recent usage of the content • Landing page or not • Bounce rate • Assigned content creator
Content Audit Example Section of a Content Audit Content Report : Aug. 2011 - July 2012 Page Pageviews % of Total Usage # of pages Library Homepage 366,946 51% 1 Subject Database pages 117,893 16% 33 Database Index 41,372 6% 21 Databases A-Z pages 17,676 2% 22 Guides (index) 17,403 2% 1 VPN Page 15,515 2% 1 Library Hours 10,167 1% 1 Find (index) 6,381 1% 1 Colorado Statute page 5,511 1% 1
Inventory Process: Site UsersList your site’s intended users groups: • Students? • Faculty? • Teenagers? • Adults? Tip! Many WA tools collect • Parents? and report some demographic data. • Local community members? Or consider surveying • Non-English speaking? your population. • Mobile users?
Inventory Process: Related Goals/PlansSearch for existing planning documents:• Mission/Vision Statements• Strategic Plans• Organizational Goals Example:“The Library enhances our users ability to access information and developcritical research skills by creating…virtual pathways for them to interact withLibrary resources and staff at the most opportune times in their learningprocesses.” – Kraemer Family Library’s Mission Statement
Inventory Process: Purpose of Site Why does that website exist? This defines your website’s success. Primary Purpose Secondary Purpose Main reason the website Additional, but was made supported, uses of the site 1 per site Can have more than 1
Finding a PurposeI want my users to…• To find the necessary information resources quickly and efficiently.
Finding a Purpose con’tIt would be awesome if my users could…• Find basic information about the library and library services• Connect with a reference librarian.• Discover library events and related library news.• Renew their books online.• Etc.
Inventory Process Wrap-Up• Be prepared to repeat this process with all your web presences• Keep this process simple, but practical• Be prepared to share• Document and retain for future
Goal Writing 101: SMART Goals*S – Specific Be clear and exact in what you wantM – Measurable Set the benchmarkA – Achievable Be realistic; you already know the site’s current performanceR – Result Based *Based on George Doran’s “There’s a Outcome is relevant and necessary S.M.A.R.T Way to Write Management’s Goals and Objectives” published inT – Timed Management Review in 1971. Setting a target date
Break It Down… SMART Goal = Objective and KPI Objective: Should be specific and relevant to the website’s purpose. • Typically, have at least one objective for each identified purpose. KPI: Measures the specific goal to show if the site is successful in meeting this goal or not. • Objectives can have multiple KPIs.
Objective WritingPrimary Purpose: To find the necessary information resourcesquickly and efficiently. Potential Objectives Objective 1: Connect a majority of users that access the library’s databases in quick and efficient manner. Objective 2: Users can easily find the library catalog. Tip: Focus on the major resources or prioritize the ones you want to analyze.
Developing KPIsObjective 1: Connect a majority of users that access thelibrary’s databases in quick and efficient manner. KPI 1. 60% or more of the users that accessed a library database did so in three or fewer clicks on the site. KPI 2. Over half the visitors are able to find a library database in less than minute from entering the site.
Power of Conversions KPI 1. 60% or more of the users that accessed a library database did so in three or fewer clicks on the site. Goal Type: URL Destination or Event + Advanced Segment: 3 clicks or less = Answer!
Power of Conversions con’t KPI 2. Over half the visitors are able to find a library database in less than minute from entering the site. Goal Type: URL Destination or Event + Advanced Segment: Visit is under 60 secs = Answer!
Another ExampleSecondary Purpose: Connect with a reference librarian. Objective 1: Increase visitor use of online reference services. KPI 1: Increase the number of online chats by 10% in the Spring 2013 semester. KPI 2: Increase the number of submitted email reference forms by 5% in the Spring 2013 semester.
Objectives and KPI Dos and Don’ts DO DON’TEnsure each identified Go overboard on the object purpose should have at least and KPI creation one objective and KPI Focus on minute details – Make objectives and KPIs objectives should always tie relevant to the library into the library’s “big picture” Use conversions (Goal Report Forget to segment reports as feature) necessary
More Info…• Avinash Kaushik: • Web Analytics: An Hour a Day • Web Analytics 2.0: The Art of Online Accountability and Science of Customer Centricity• Digital Analytics Association: www.digitalanalyticsassociation.org• GA Conversion University (tutorials)• Kate Marek: Web Analytics in the Library, ALA TechSource• Coming soon! Farney & McHale, LITA Guide: Web Analytics Strategies for Information Professionals
Contact Info Tabatha Farney Nina McHaleAssistant Professor, Web Web Developer Services Librarian Arapahoe Library District University of Colorado @ninermac Colorado Springs ninermac.net/contact firstname.lastname@example.org