A recent site speed and loading time analysis showed that the visitor statistic plugin I was using was taking up too much time to load, slowing down the site speed significantly, so I decided to look for an alternative.
Most recommended, with the most detailed statistics is the Google Analytics. Together with their Webmaster tools this is the a very powerful information gatherer, which you can use to analyze and modify your titles, descriptions and keywords to optimize your SEO.
What do you need to set up Google Analytics
- A google mail account
- Access to your files on the webserver OR (for locally installed wordpress)
- Admin access to a plugin that can insert the Google Analytics code (I use the header & Footer plugin)
You can start here: http://www.google.com/analytics/
Sign up for account, fill in info and site to track (for Handmade In Europe, don’t forget to change the HTTP to HTTPS!), and click ‘get tracking ID’ in the bottom.
Next page will present you with the tracking ID, and different ways to implement the code to your site. Handmade In Europe site owners can just copy the script to paste in the header, and send this to us, we’ll do the rest.
You can add more websites under your account. You can also add other Google users to your account, and give them access to the stats. You can restrict this to viewing only if you wish.
After a day or 2 the stats will show up, under reporting you will get different options, and can check out where your users came from, what OS they used, what language they have, and much, much more.. The regular dashboard will give you a direct, easy to monitor overview, if you like deeper analyses you can drill down many levels, it is a really powerful statistic tool!
For further options there is a pleasant Google lady presenting the different possibilities in the video below. The total takes 30 minutes, but if you are really interested in getting the max out of your google analytics it will be well worth it.
Famous last words
- You used to be able to add external platforms like your shop on Etsy or Dawanda to the analytics account, regretfully, since now you have to copy a bit of script to your server, this is no longer possible.
For handmade in Europe sites: we can add your site to our Analytics account, and give you reading access to the statistics. Just let us know!
- Google analytics will keep track of your visits, and also on keywords used to find you. Excellent in case you want to optimize your site for SEO, or run an adwords campaign.
- You can link your Google Webmaster tools to your Google Analytics account to get a really powerful set of statistics and tips to further optimize your findability.