What are people doing when they visit your website? Which pages are they going to and how long are they spending on them?
More importantly: Are your visitors doing what you want them to do?
These are just a few of the answers that form up a solid reason as to why you need some form of analytics on your website. The good news is that nowadays with Google Analytics and a lot of other free options out there – you’re not going to have to pay a cent!
What Can Free Analytics Do?
Thinking about analytics and what it can accomplish is difficult, considering the real question that you should be asking nowadays is: What can’t free analytics do?
Yes – that is how advanced even free analytics software has become, and you’ll find yourself able to track practically every significant portion of your visitor’s activity on your website, and then some.
If you like, you could break down the features of most analytics into three main portions:
- Tracking how visitors arrived at your website in the first place
- Tracking what they did once they got to your website
- Tracking how they left your website
The first and the last area are really fairly run of the mill. Tracking how visitors arrived at your website basically lets you know your traffic sources and how many people came from which source exactly.
Similarly, tracking how people left your website involves figuring out which links (if any) they used to leave your website.
It is the combination of factors that clue you in on various important aspects of your visitors’ behavior however, and that is where the fun really begins. Even basic analytics can help you find out:
- How long visitors from specific traffic sources spent on your website after they arrived, which should hint at how relevant they found your website based on the source.
- Whether or not your visitors were successfully channeled where you wanted them to be, or whether they left via other links.
- Which pages specifically attracted the most visitors, and which ones didn’t.
- How many visitors came back later of their own volition.
Starting to see how valuable this information could be? Frankly speaking, free analytics are pretty much a ‘must have’ on any website that places a premium on identifying what people are doing on the website so that they can improve in various ways.
And with Google Analytics and other free versions out there, all you need to do is choose one that fits your requirements and you could have it up and running in under an hour if you really wanted to.