Do you know what is happening on your Web site? Do you know how many people visit? What pages they view? What they buy? You may think that it’s quite expensive to have that kind of data at your fingertips. You may not even realize that you can use these same numbers to optimize your Web site for increased conversion. And it’s all free.
How? The skinflint marketing way.
First, let’s see how to measure the activity on your Web site. You might think that you need to lay out big bucks for the kind of information you need to run your Web site, but you don’t. Let’s examine three ways to get that information for nothing:
- Your hosting company. Check out how your Web site is hosted—most deals include some free statistics as part of the package. The good news is that it costs you nothing, but the bad news is that many of these metrics packages are hard to use or hard to understand. Check your out, though—if it works for you, there’s nothing easier or cheaper.
- Deep Log Analyzer. If you’re squeamish about Google seeing all your data, there’s one more free solution—Deep Software offers its free program to analyze your Web activity logs. Log analysis does not always make it easy to track conversions, but if you have some technical skills you can install the software and track activity without sharing any of your data with Google.
None of these approaches will help you measure the impact of your blog, however. Sure, you can count how many people view your blog pages, but you really want to know how many subscribers you have. The best solution for that is to use FeedBurner, owned by Google.
Feedburner provides a standard way for subscribers to request your feed, no matter what feed reader they use and what feed format they want. Then just sit back and watch the numbers—FeedBurner does the rest.
But merely counting activity is not enough. What you really want is to optimize your Web experience so that your customers buy more and more. Enter multivariate testing.
Multivariate testing software allows you to try out dozens, hundreds, thousands, or even millions of different versions of a Web page—all automatically. By trying out so many variations and by watching to see which ones results in the most conversions, you can quickly identify the optimal version for your Web site. Many Web sites increase conversion rates by 30% or more with this technique.
So multivariate testing must cost a lot of money, right?
Wrong. Google is at it again. Google Website Optimizer costs nothing but provides huge value for increasing conversions. You must still provide the discrete parts of the Web page to be assembled into so many variants, but Website Optimizer does the rest, exhaustively testing every combination and dutifully reporting the winners.
Want more tips to raise your Internet marketing success? Check out Search Engine Marketing, Inc., which contains a complete step-by-step program for successful search marketing for your business. For more ways to improve your overall Internet marketing, take a look at Do It Wrong Quickly, an indispensable guide to the new ways of marketing on the cheap.