Just Getting into Web Analytics

Over the holidays, among other things, I’ve been doing a deep dive into web analytics – led mostly by Avinash Kaushik in his new book Web Analytics 2.0: The Art of Online Accountability and Science of Customer Centricity (Amazon affiliate link) – a book that I’d highly recommend if you’re into this kind of thing.

At Glenbrook, we’ve got three primary websites that address who we are and what we do:

  1. Glenbrook.com – our partnership’s home page, describing who we are and what we do – our payments education program (Payments Boot Camps and our new webinar series) and our strategy consulting and research practice.
  2. PaymentsNews.com – far and away our busiest site, PaymentsNews.com is our edited version of the news of the day of importance to payments professionals – who we consider our primary audience.
  3. PaymentsViews.com – launched earlier this year, PV is where we share our rants and opinions about the news of the day and about other learnings we’ve had in our recent work.

It’s been interesting, using some of the techniques in Kaushik’s book, to take a look at how these three websites behave based on a deeper exploration of user interaction.

For example, when looking at new visitors vs. returning visitors over the last six months, PaymentsNews.com skews significantly to returning visitors (70+ percent) vs. new visitors. Obviously, PN has a regular readership among payments professionals – many of who either subscribe via email, or to the RSS feed, or who have just bookmarked PN in their browser.

On the other hand, both PaymentsViews.com and Glenbrook.com have just the opposite skew – with almost 70 percent of visitors to both of these sites being new visitors.

On PaymentsNews.com, we run Google AdSense ads to help support our costs in providing the service. It turns out that almost 70% of the AdSense revenue comes from new visitors – mostly coming to PN from searches – while returning visitors seem to be much less likely to click on any of the ads.

We’re fascinating by the segmentation opportunities as we study further the interaction of users with our websites. Look forward to learning more and sharing some new insights!

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