Google Basics and Analytics

Google Basics

Google uses three key processes when delivering search results: Crawling, Indexing, and Serving. When crawling, Google finds new sites to be indexed. The “Googlebot” visits websites to find new links and Google is very careful to make sure that this part of their business is kept separate from AdWords. This article talks more about the “Googlebot”.

Indexing a website uses the information from the crawling to compile a massive database of all words and their location on a page. It also focuses on key tags and attributes. When considering how websites are indexed, it’s obvious that accessibility comes into play. One point I thought about when reading about indexing is what if you do not want a website indexed. This article by Google discusses the robots.txt file.

When serving results, Google uses over 200 factors to determine relevancy including PageRank. They obviously don’t give much information away in terms of the determining factors used for the algorithms other than identifying quality links. This article explains PageRank in further detail. 

 

Google Analytics

Google analytics have come a long way in both functionality and appearance. The latest improvement is in the social media aspects. By using Google Analytics, you can see conversion rates and how your social strategy is impacting your goals. By seeing which content is viewed the longest and how viewers react to it, A/B testing and content experiments can be run to see which content will ultimately help drive the most sales. Surprisingly for me, I found Google Analytics to be fairly rudimentary though as they do not allow social tracking or IFTTT situations. Companies like Vocus are able to take the social conversations and analytics a step deeper. Companies like Spinnakr are able to take bigger data and run tests on the fly. In the long-run, Google Analytics could definitely be expanded to cover more ground, but the question is profitability

 

Questions:

What tools other than Google Analytics have you used to track both website and social media performance?

What do you think Google could add to their analytics that would help digital marketers specifically?

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5 thoughts on “Google Basics and Analytics

  1. jscholnik says:

    Yes, Google’s algorithms are their secret sauce. There is no way we will ever know the exact way a site is ranked. I’ll redirect your own question at you — what would you like Google to add to their analytics that will help digital marketers?

    • Not so much on the analytics side, but it is disappointing that Google has almost completely abandoned Google Alerts/Reader. That had a lot of potential to connect in well with their Analytics to have value to marketers. I think ease of use could be improved as initial start-up for most isn’t that simple. Overall, I think it’s a good tool that needs tweaks rather than whole scale additions/improvements.

  2. Maria Sanchez says:

    Facebook has some great tools that will let you track how well your posts are being read. At my old paper, we would often use these tracking tools to try to get a better handle on what kind of posts were being shared, what kind of “voice” tended to get the best responses and even what time of day people were most likely to engage in a conversation. By using those tools we were able to hone in our efforts and got a lot more audience interaction.

    We had our own analytics program – Omniture – but it was fairly similar to Google analytics.

    • Omniture was acquired by Adobe and serves as part of the platform that’s one of the largest competitors for the company I work for, Vocus. What kind of posts did you find were shared most or that you personally are most likely to click on?

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