General Posts

#GoogleDoodle: MLK 2011

Monday, January 17th, 2011

Happy MLK Day from Google!

Google Analytics: Expanded Goals and Engagement Goals

Wednesday, February 10th, 2010

Google Analytics has always done an excellent job of helping to evaluate success or failure based on certain information that users have come to identify with. One of the most exciting new features of those recently introduced to the Google Analytics platform is that of Expanded Goals (tracking and depth).

Long story short, you’ve been able to track a few goals before via certain metrics– but now, you have 20 goal metrics by which to trigger activity within goal tracking (a very good thing). No longer just simple ‘did the user navigate to this page or not’ goals, but robust conditions such as elements within pages in script being interacted with, or even one of the new types of goals: Engagement Goals.

These new goal metrics are based on thresholds that a user may meet or exceed, such as time on site ≥x amount of time, or user has viewed ≥x amount of pages. It can quickly be seen how useful these types of goals can be, especially if you’re running an ad hosting site– quite marketable to suggest that a significant percentage of the visitors to the site not only idle, but navigate numerous pages of the site’s architecture, being exposed to more and more of your sponsored messages. It also is indicative of page build that works well; lackluster results can spur improvement, and of course variations on a theme that allow the designer to ascertain what constitues more or less advantageous elements of their layout and presentation.

New tools to track success are always welcome, particularly when they are this flexible and powerful. Being able to derive insight from the implementation of routine analysis is one of the practices that can set one apart from the rest in a world where information enables advantage over competition.

Google Incorporates Real Time Search

Friday, December 11th, 2009

A few days ago Google added real time search to its main page. To check it out just go and run a search for anything that has recently been getting public attention for example “President Obama”. You will notice an unobtrusive live streaming results box inserted into the general search results. Almost like watching a stock ticker this stream will constantly update with new information as it comes in. The sources for this new information include Twitter, Facebook, news sources, newly updated websites, etc.

Real time search has been a focus and goal of Google’s for years; the inclusion of this real time window was a gigantic step in that direction. Many people attribute the wide success of Twitter to its ability to connect people, businesses, and news in real time. In this day and age the Internet has become a constant river of information. The real time search box from Google gives us a jumping off point into that river, one from which we can observe the rivers flow and no longer be limited by a frozen image of its currents.

So how do these new additions to our Internet experience effect us? One clear way is reputation management. Most successful business are already leveraging Internet marketing to promote their brands. Real time search results allow us a finger on the lifeblood of the Internet. When a company pays for space on a billboard it can be difficult to measure that investments return and impact. Imagine if that business knew every time a driver commented to their passenger about their billboard and what they said about it. Real time search shows that communication is growing, bringing us closer together, and closing the information gap between businesses and their customers.