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Track Website Visitor Statistics to Improve SEO and Traffic

Brad Callen's Niche Finder

Brad Callen's Niche Finder Software

Most websites and/or servers come equipped with some sort of tracking statistics program installed by default these days, and there are many useful free statistics tools which can be used as well. When you are new to having a website, it may take some time to realize how useful and important these visitor statistics and logs can be.

In their most basic form, visitor logs can tell you simple things such as what type of Web browser your visitors use and what operating system is installed on their computer or browsing device. This can be useful because it allows you to check the look and functionality of your website on those browsers and operating systems.

For example, if you usually use Mozilla Firefox as your Web browser, but 90% of your visitors use Internet Explorer, then you should look at your site using IE to ensure it is looking and working correctly. Sometimes you will find that things are not lined up precisely, and in some cases you can even discover links and other functionality are not working either. This process is known as ensuring cross-browser compatibility and it can be greatly assisted by using a service such as Browsershots. By attending to these details you are able to fix any problems and dramatically improve the user experience, and thereby responsiveness, of 90% of your traffic.

Most visitor logs or statistics applications will also tell you how a visitor found your website and this can be a goldmine of useful information for you. When people visit your website from another location on the Web, it will show in your statistics program as a referrer. This allows you to know when new links are created to your website from other Web pages, and you can often visit those referring links to see if discussions are taking place about your website. This lets you join in the conversation if appropriate and leverage the social aspects of the Web.

Besides referring websites, visitor logs and statistics programs also provide a wealth of information about your search engine listings. When people use a search engine to find something and click through to your website, much of that information is shown in your analytics data. You can see how much traffic is coming from each search engine, and you can see the words and phrases people type in to find you.

Seeing the search terms used to find your website is where the real gold is for search engine optimization purposes, because you can use those keywords and phrases to optimize your website even further.

When you first build a site about asthma facts for example, you probably choose the top 10 to 20 keywords for that topic. By regularly consulting your visitor logs as time goes on, you may discover obscure words and phrases which are very relevant to your website, but which you may never have thought of on your own.

As you discover these new keywords and phrases, you are able to easily create additional pages of content on your website around those new terms. This will increase the size and relevancy of your website while also providing you with more targeted on-topic keywords the search engines can rank you well for. Plus, you already know there is a demand for the content, rather than having to guess.

Simple visitor logs are included in website hosting plans these days, but there are some very powerful and detailed alternatives available at no cost. One of the perennially popular analytics packages is Google Analytics. Webmasters reluctant to give such sensitive data to a third-party, tend to favor an open source (GPL licensed) real time web analytics software program called Piwik.

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