Google Analytics-Useless info?

 
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geek
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 3:34 pm    Post subject: Google Analytics-Useless info? Reply with quote

hey'all
So my hosting company used to provide Urchin for free which was a fantastic tool in tracking website traffic: how many people visited the site after a promo push, who they were, where they came from, what they looked at on my site, how long, etc etc etc. Well the hosting company and Urchin parted ways last November (I don't know why) and since then I've been using Google Analytics. To be blunt It Sucks. The information is worse than useless: it includes fascinating details like what kind of internet connection visitors have and what browser they use. Moreover my bounce rate has been 100% (each and every visitor hits the home page then leaves without going anywhere else in the site) since November 2010. Obviously this is FALSE. And all other internal navigating information reflects this bounce rate (no pages visited, no navigational path, etc.) I've tried using GA's help dialogues and forum but the instructions are incredibly technical and way beyond my understanding. I've also seen on the forum many other users who have the same exact issues as I but no advice is forthcoming.

So my query is twofold:

1. Does anyone here use Google Analytics successfully and if so are there some specific techniques one must apply to do so?

2. Is there another free or inexpensive reputable tracking system out there?

Sorry for the long post! Thanks for your input.....
karen
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Jon DeVaul
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 5:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use it, and check it every night(morning actually) after midnight. I agree, I don't give a damn whether someone visited my site using Firefox, Safari, etc. I like to check the traffic sources, and then move on to Visitors> map. I do know of some instances where an art director that I'm friends with, checked out my site while I talked to him on the phone, and it didn't show up...it should have listed a visit from the city he lives in, but it didn't. It's free, and has some value IMO, so I keep it.

Jon
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geek
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 4:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks John, for that, at least I don't feel alone in my frustration. I can't even see cities on the map! Just states which really is too general to be of serious use.
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Jon DeVaul
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 12:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

geek wrote:
Thanks John, for that, at least I don't feel alone in my frustration. I can't even see cities on the map! Just states which really is too general to be of serious use.


When you see the list of states, just click on one of the states, and it should show the cities.

Jon
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geek
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 23, 2011 3:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi there, to anyone who is interested: I found a site called Clicky and signed up for free. Its terrific. Instead of filling me in on what connection speed and screen colors my site visitors are using it tells me domain names, referring links + sites, duration of visit by viewer and lots more fun and actually useful details. And it's in real time: I don't have to wait til the next day to parse how successful a particular campaign or email was. Very cool!

http://getclicky.com
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Mike Hudson
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 6:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been using Stat Counter for a few years- pretty simple but easier to read than Google. Free too.

http://statcounter.com/
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Rich Green
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 1:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I posted comments about this on my blog the other day -

http://rjgreenphoto.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/dont-quite-understand-google-analytics/

One point that I forgot to add - when I log onto my website it should show up as "Direct (link) - Verizon - New Jersey". Instead lately, it will show me linking in via "asmp.org" and it will show me doing it multiple times in one day - and it's on days that I'm not connecting in at all. The "asmp" connection is new. It used to say that I was connecting in via my blog. And I know it's recording my visits, not someone else's.
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Rich Green
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 09, 2011 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Forgive me for beating a dead horse, but yesterday I was on my one site - Rich Green photography - showing it to some friends at their location for about 10 minutes and today analytics says "0 time on site and 100% bounce". The day before I was updating/changing images and it said - traffic source -- google/organic with the keywords "people lifestyles in new jersey". That's how analytics defined me. Yikes!
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K.C.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 10, 2011 5:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recently had a chance to take a four and half hour course on google analytics. I think I'm more confused than before I took it.

The phrase that keeps echoing through my mind is 'the emperors new clothes.'
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