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Web Marketing All-in-One For Dummies, 2nd Edition by Elizabeth Marsten, Ian Lurie, Marty Dickinson, Michael Becker, John Arnold

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Chapter 2: Tracking Traffic Volumes

In This Chapter

check.png Avoiding hits

check.png The five basic metrics

check.png How to interpret basic data

All the fancier metrics for tracking traffic and user behavior that you can read about later in this book are built on the five basic ones covered in this chapter. You need to understand these five metrics — and how to interpret them — if you’re going to do more advanced analysis and know how to use that data to improve your site.

tip.eps This chapter uses Google Analytics. The reports are much the same from one reporting package to another, though. Follow along with these examples, and you’ll be able to apply what you glean here to any reporting toolset.

Seeing Why Hits Are a Lousy Metric

First off, though, you need to avoid one metric when tracking traffic and user behavior: hits.

You probably hear a lot of folks talk about hits. “I got a million hits last month!!” is a claim you hear a lot.

That’s great, but hits are almost meaningless when it comes to measuring audience or marketing performance. Simply defined, a hit is any one file downloaded from your website, any one ...

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