There are some 70 million blogs according to Technorati and 120,000 are being created everyday. The probability of anyone finding your blog in this number is somewhat like finding the eye of a needle in a haystack! You have to know from where your visitors are coming. Once you know the source of your traffic you can work on increasing it. This is where you can take the help of Google Analytics...........
First install the code for Google Analytics in your template. The procedure is the same even though it has been upgraded to Version 2. The sources for your traffic can be divided into three main categories :
1. DIRECT VISITORS : These are visitors who reach your site by typing the link in the address bar of the browser or clicking on the bookmark in their browser.
2. REFERRALS FROM OTHER SITES : These are visitors who find your site link on other sites. They click it and reach your site. Such links on other sites pointing to your site are also called as backlinks.
3. SEARCH ENGINE REFERRALS : Visitors clicking on links returned by search engine results for the searches they have typed in are included in this category. These are further classified into :
- A. ORGANIC : These are unpaid search engine listed links.
- B. PAID : These are paid advertised links you see on the right side of the organic links.
See the picture below :
To find out your traffic source login to your Google Analytics account. You will get a graph of the overview for visitors statistics in the last month . At the top click on the down arrow next to the date and select what time period you would like to see the traffic statistics for. Then click on 'Traffic Sources' in the navigation sidebar at the left. You will get an overview of Top Traffic statistics. You can export this report as a pdf/csv/tsv/xl file or email it to anyone.
To compare two time periods check the compare box after clicking the down arrow next to the date range and select another date range to compare. You will get statistics for both the periods along with the percentage increase/decrease in traffic.
You can also see the Direct Traffic, Referring Sites Traffic and the Search Engine Traffic by clicking their links in the sidebar. The Search Engine Traffic is segmented into paid, non-paid and total. If you click on All Traffic Sources you can further see the Organic and the Referral mediums sending the traffic.
For each section in the sidebar you get a breakdown of Visits, Pages/Visit, Avg. Time on site, Percentage New Visits and the Bounce Rate. The Bounce Rate is the percentage of visitors leaving the page they landed on without visiting any other page on your site.
After analyzing the data you can take steps to increase your traffic. For instance if you see in the Sites Referral section that you are not getting any visitors from social bookmarking sites you can add your blog to these sites. If you see that less visitors are coming from organic search engine referrals you should optimize your blog for the search engines.