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Complete Web Monitoring

Cover of Complete Web Monitoring by Alistair Croll... Published by O'Reilly Media, Inc.
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Measuring Communities and Outcomes

Your ability to track community engagement depends to a large degree on the nature of the community platform. As we’ve seen, when you run the platform you have far more insight into how your community engages with you. Because you control site design and the insertion of JavaScript, you can use many of the tools we’ve seen in earlier chapters, particularly web analytics, to understand the degree of engagement you’re seeing within a community.

On the other hand, when you’re merely a moderator or participant, measuring community engagement can be difficult.

As Figure 14-42 shows, you can think of a community’s members as moving through eight levels of engagement, from their first impressions of the community all the way to the moment when they become active participants.

The community funnel

Figure 14-42. The community funnel

Single Impression

Any visitor who encounters a community gets an impression. If she doesn’t see something of use, she will leave. Such visits typically last less than five seconds, and show up as bounces on your website (Figure 14-43). Of course, if you’re not running the platform, you won’t have any idea what the bounce rate of your messages is—you simply won’t see activity, such as upvoting or comments, around the content.

Comparing a visitor who failed to be impressed (and had only a single impression lasting five seconds) with the rest of your visitors

Figure 14-43. Comparing a visitor ...

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