Category Archives: Web Statistics

7 sources of link intelligence data and key link analysis considerations

It may seem like a cliché but on the web no website is an island. Any site worth its salt will have accumulated inbound links and will most certainly contain outbound links to other resources on the web. Indeed, one can easily say that without links to interconnect websites, there wouldn’t be a worldwide web.

For search engines, such as Google, incoming links provide a strong signal as to the authority of a website. If multiple websites link to a specific website for a given topic, there is a good chance the website cited by others is deemed to be highly relevant for a good reason. Google and other search engines identify the theme of a website page by analyzing a page’s content and the text of the incoming links – the underlined text you click on to arrive at a page. Links, especially inbound links, are thus one of the most significant in the over 200 factors Google considers in its ranking algorithms. Inbound links from related sites in a business’ sector are also an excellent source of highly qualified direct traffic.


Microsoft Throws in Web Analytics Towel, abandons adCenter Analytics

To judge by an e-mail I received, and this post Microsoft is abandoning the Live Metrics solution it relaunched as adCenter Analytics.

On a personal level, this reminds me lot of another web area (book search) where Microsoft competed with Google but later got cold feet and pulled out. I hope Yahoo remains steady in its commitment to Web Analytics [and hope they open it to SEO folks like me :-)]

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In-house SEO: SEO Reporting & Scorecarding for Management

One of the nice things about web marketing is the wealth of data available to use in decision making processes. Web marketing data also helps in getting and maintaining management support for SEO activities.

This SMX West session focusing on in-house SEO considered what data to present to management, when to present it and how to best present it. The line-up is an all star cast – two in house SEO practitioners at companies, that among other things, own search engines. As if that wasn’t enough, we also have John Marshall, founder and former CEO of Clicktracks. Rounding up the line-up is Jessica Bowman, a SEO consultant specializing in setting up and guiding in-house SEO programs.

Moderator: Jessica Bowman, Founder,


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Page views value little in the monetization of a website

The title might be a bit provocative, but the topic is important for companies which want to insure their website is a profit center rather than a cost center. The number of page views tracked by a web analytics system is often a weak indicator of website monetization potential. With the advent of monetization programs such as Google’s AdSense, the specific content of a web page has become much more telling in this regard. Let’s see why.

In this article we will restrict ourselves to advertising as the monetization tool.

The success factors for the monetization of a website depend on the advertising model used. The traditional approach is to sell banner space, historically at a cost per 1000 impressions (CPM). In this model, the greater the number of page views, the better. Life is all rather straight forward. Yet over time many advertisers have become more sophisticated, offering to pay just for the traffic actually received, e.g. the click-through model where the site carrying the ad receives a fee only if a user clicks on the banner, arriving at the advertiser’s site.

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Social media measurement and an example, this SEO Blog

Recently a friend asked me for some pointers on the measurement of social media, such as blogs.

I have found that Jeremiah Owyang has a lot of interesting things to say on this topic, as exemplified by has article What should we measure and the document Tracking the Influence of Conversations: A Roundtable Discussion on Social Media Metrics and Measurement.

Yet it isn’t sufficient that we measure conversation on the web, we must also consider potential traps hidden in the data – we need to interpret it.

Consider the case of a blog post. The extent that a post has been read and has involved a blog’s readers might be deduced from the number of comments the post has generated. Two potential problems arise using this metric.

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Improve search engine and keyword reporting in Google Analytics, a SEO strategy

In three short years 1 Google Analytics has become an important tool for many companies looking to get more out of their presence on the web. Google Analytics’ wide range of website reports, from traffic sources to conversion rates, provide invaluable insight into a site’s business performance for an initial cost which is difficult to beat.

One particular report, the Search Engine report, is of particular interest to companies looking to optimize their organic search engine marketing activity. This report identifies sources of search traffic that brought visitors to the website.

For each search engine source, a drill-down feature shows the keywords people used – the very keywords which express a visitor’s intent as they came to your website.

Updated 2013-08-26: The examples now refer to the asynchronous 3rd version of Google’s tracking code, released in 2009. Universal Analytics users should consult this updated article.


Search engine detection in Microsoft adCenter Analytics

Microsoft is the other main player, after Google Analytics, in the area of free Web Analytics tools for the analysis of browser centric web data. Microsoft’s adCenter Analytics is the successor to the former LiveSTATS thanks to Microsoft’s acquisition of DeepMetrix in April 20061.

Why search engines offer Web Analytics

Certainly the name Microsoft choose for its Web Analytics tool says a lot: with adCenter Analytics you know the priority is on advertising. Google has taken a softer approach with Google Analytics; sure there is and will be strong integration with AdWords, yet everyone is welcome to take advantage of Google Analytics even if they aren’t (yet) an AdWords client. The official line is that having experienced the power of measuring business results derived from a company’s web presence, marketing professionals will be more inclined to become AdWords clients. One presumes as well that the data collected by Google Analytics is used inside Google to measure the overall state of traffic on the web (including Google’s competitor’s market share – the benchmarking with other sites feature gives an idea of the possibilities). I hope that Microsoft will adopt a more enlightened Internet strategy and aggressively promote adCenter Analytics usage among non-adCenter clients. Google is a great company but could use some competition.


Links and Algorithms behind Blog Statistics: BlogBabel reopens.

I couldn’t help but notice the reopening of Italy’s primary blog classification service, BlogBabel. Just over a year ago I wrote about BlogBabel:

“While it is worth keeping in mind that BlogBabel’s ranking is just one measure of the importance of a particular blog, Ludo deserves kudos for the transparency in which BlogBabel’s rankings are calculated.”

Since then, the ranking factors have changed a bit. Currently BlogBabel says the following parameters are considered1:

BlogBabel Ranking FactorDescriptionWeight
Google PageRankThe “official” global weight Google assigns to a site. (Its worth noting that this is updated only once every 3-4 months and is not what Google uses internally.)1
FeedBurnerNumber of feed subscribers for blogs.0, thus not considered
Link/6Inbound links from posts on other sites, added within the last 6 months.1
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BLVD Status Analytics in free public beta test

I found an interesting announcement over at of a new Web Analytics tool, BLVD Status.

Two significant impediments have historically hindered the uptake of Web Analytics by businesses. The first has been cost. Professional Web Analytics systems have been fairly expensive, both in server and hosted forms. The second issue has been the great quantity and complexity of available reports in commercial systems, sufficiently intimidating many business professionals away from Web Analytics.

Google’s Google Analytics

Google, with their release of Google Analytics in November 2005, removed the first obstacle, cost, by releasing the first free “full featured” Web Analytics system. Previous free tools, such as AWStats, lack robust visitor recognition and click stream analysis, among other things. Yet a significant obstacle still remained to general Web Analytics usage: how to find the “important” data, without getting lost in a sea of confusing and often redundant reports? In May 2007 Google released an updated Google Analytics with a significant focus on the user interface, specifically as a response to this need.


Are Italian publishers still diffident when it comes to Internet Book Search?

This was the question posed to Santiago de la Mora, Google’s European Partnerships Lead, Books, at Editech 2008: Editoria e innovazione tecnologica, Milan, 27 June 2008.

In the article that follows, I’ve attempted to paraphrase Santiago’s presentation of Google’s Book Search based on notes I took during the session. Santiago started by noting his agenda would cover 5 points. As the slide set is not currently available and I couldn’t see it very well from my side seat, I’ve added a few screen shots in an attempt to better illustrate Santiago’s presentation. I’ve also inserted a few personal comments, indicated with italics.

1. Challenges and opportunities on the Internet

With about 1 billion users today in Internet, every publisher needs an Internet strategy. 2007 e-commerce sales are estimated at $420 billion globally (I’m not sure of the source, but US only e-commerce sales were at $136.4 billion1). As mentioned previously, books are the number one product sold on the net2, totaling $180 billion3.

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