“It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.” – Sherlock Holmes
Without having the facts concerning just about anything in the world, it is hard to really understand the inner workings of what is at hand. We can make assumptions and draw conclusions, but we will still be missing out on much bigger clues that could help guide us to becoming more successful. When it comes to establishing and maintaining a Web site presence, this is absolutely the case. The more you know about your site visitors, the more you can increase your chances that they will stay longer, which in the end should increase your bottom line.
In order to have the most effective Web site possible, ask yourself how much you really know about it, beyond how it looks. How do people find your site? What is the most common page from which they enter and exit your site? When you can answer questions like this, you will know what you need to do in order to keep them there longer. For example, if you identify the page where you visitors typically exit your site, you can then analyze that page and see what can be done to remedy the situation. Maybe the page needs to be re-vamped, in order to help create a different path for the visitor.
Web analytics, which is the science behind learning more about the site’s visitors and their surfing habits, can go a long way toward helping you capitalize on the people visiting your site. It is an effective way to help determine what should be done in order to keep the visitor there longer, an answer which may be as simple as prompting them to click to another area, or making sure you give prime placement to your most popular products and services.
Sherlock Holmes may not have been around to witness Web sites, but his message still rings true today. In order to have a successful site, we must first have all the facts, so we can build theories that are based on those facts.