Referring web sites
Referring web sites are those sites from which your site visitors come. If you have PPC ads on Google’s
AdWords network, the referring web site might be one of the search engines those ads are distributed
across. If you’ve written articles and newsletters that have been distributed across the Web, the sites
that host those might be the referring web sites.
Most analytics packages will track your referring sites. They’re then provided in a report that quickly
lets you see where your site visitors are coming from. This information allows you to quickly under-
stand if your SEO efforts are paying off. If you know that you have several types of campaigns that
should be leading from one site or another, but you don’t find one of those sites listed, you know
those efforts are not working. All that’s left then is to figure out why.
Referring keywords (paid and organic)
Another useful measurement you’ll find in most web statistics packages is keyword tracking. Most
web statistics packages will track both paid and organic keywords. Which paid keywords are tracked
will depend on the stats package you use, but nearly all of them will track organic keywords.
The value of organic keyword tracking is that you can learn how your site is being discovered. The
words and phrases that visitors use to find you gives you a good look into the way they think of
your business. For example, people won’t usually search for “financial services.” It’s more likely
that they’ll search for “money market,” or “savings account,” or even “free checking account.” A
stats package that tracks these words will help you monitor and analyze the keywords that work
for your site, and will help you stay on top of cultural shifts that change the way people think.
There are a few other statistics you may want to track. These stats will help give you a clearer pic-
ture of the traffic to your site, the behaviors of your site visitors, and how those can be correlated
by aspects such as location and technical capabilities. Some of the additional stats that you might
want to track include:
Keywords used by search engine
Technological capabilities (web browsers, operating systems, and so on)
Knowing how you can track your SEO results will help you to use all the resources available to you
to analyze your results and make changes that can improve your rankings and the accessibility of
your web site so that you can increase your sales conversions and profits.
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