Author Topic: Website Statistics  (Read 506 times)


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Website Statistics
« on: July 27, 2014, 06:39:02 PM »

Statistical data is one of the primary information sources you can use to learn about your website’s viewers. Many web hosts offer pre-installed statistical software and/or support for third-party systems, such as Google Analytics. While the methods of gathering information and presentation of these applications may vary, the types of data in general are very similar. This quick guide will cover some of the common terms, what they mean and how they are of benefit to you.

These terms are taken from Webalizer, although most other analytic software, such as AWStats, include similar terminology.

Hits – Some website owners will boast, “I get 10,000 hits a week.” While this is impressive, it is important to understand that “hits” refers to every page accessed on the site any number of times and even multiple times by the same person. Theoretically, a single person could generate 10,000 hits for a site all by himself.

Files – These are the number of actual files delivered to users. Every time someone accesses a web page, a file is downloaded to their browser. The exception being when they receive a “404 file not found” or other error. “Hits” still include errors, but “Files” only includes actual downloads.

Sites – This category reveals the actual number of unique IP addresses or hostnames that accessed your site. This is not a perfect gauge of how many visitors you have received, but it is pretty close. Keep in mind of course, that it includes search bots.

Visits – Perhaps the most reliable measure of actual users, visits only occur when a user accesses your site for the first time. This gives you an idea of how many unique people are actually viewing your site.

Hits by Response Code – This category will show you how many hits landed with a “Code 200 – OK” and also how many failed to connect with a variety of errors such as “Code 404 – Not Found” and “Code 500 – Internal Server Error”. If you are getting a lot of errors, those are missed opportunities for website visitors.

Total kB Files / Bandwidth – Normally, web pages are quite small in terms of file size, but even those can add up with thousands or even millions of visitors. You also pay for images, videos and any other downloads you might offer.

Daily/Hourly Stats – You can delve deeper into your user’s habits by viewing statistics according to hour or day. If you find that certain days were significantly more popular than others, you might look back at your social media and other promotions to see if they made a difference.

URLs – What pages do people actually visit? If most people access your /terms-of-service.html page, you might have a problem. If they love to visit your /products.php page, you might be getting a lot of business.

Referrers – This very important category will reveal how people got to your site. “Direct Request” means they typed it right into their browsers. That is good if you are trying to build brand recognition. You should also see various search engines and social media sites listed here, as well as links from other sites.

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