Realtime Campaign Funnel Conversion Tracking

Advertisement in popular networks such as Facebook Ads, Bing Ads as well as our beloved Google Adwords isn’t cheap! So you are spending a lot of money on advertisement with different keywords or in different networks, How do you manage and optimize the outcome?

We have provided campaign tracking, which allow you to know which of your keywords are getting best outcome among different ad networks. You can use this campaign tracking for everything else, but now we are going to have a look at it from Advertisement point of view.

Fortunately, All ad networks have a decent campaign Conversion tracking built-in. However, I can be very time consuming to open them all separately and have a look at figures and trying to find out what is actually going on! Some ad networks don’t even have Conversion tracking.

In Hitsteps, You can define your desired Goals pages. Set a default goal value (or you can modify goal value in real-time using javascript) and then connect that Goal to a Campaign landing page, It is that simple!

Once you have configured it, you can monitor all of your campaigns in real time.

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It doesn’t end there, you can see list of visitors who just landed on your campaign, but never made it to goal page. You can also see list of visitors who successfully made it to goal page.

It allows you to see list of your campaigns returns on investments (ROI) all in one page.

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Google Adwords and most other ads networks, doesn’t provide it real-time, but we do it in real-time. It can be very addictive, we have warned you!

Get your hitsteps account and start figuring out what is really happening with your ads!

How flexible is hitsteps web analytics? Unleash power of The Labels

Old days, web analytics were very simple. If they show your daily pageviews and number of visitors, you would be satisfied. But nowadays, those are called web statistics. so what is web analytics actually? Web analytics process your visitors information and give you more detailed information from exact same data. We now calculate bounce rate, we track clicks to generate heat maps, we track every single page views to make a detailed visitor browsing history in your website and keep them all in visitor’s profile.

Each web analytics service, have a certain major features point, what if you need something that is not there?

It is why we have introduced “Labels”, You can access labels in your dashboard menu, but lets have a look at what is that exactly?

Labels basic function is to add a customized colored label for each profile. so, to make it searchable, and to make it easy to understand. but in same time, it also analyze each labels separately.

As a result, for example, you can have hitsteps track everyone who visit your product checkout page, add a label to visitor profile with your defined name or color, and generate graphs for that label and notify you when this label is triggered via Email, Google Hangout and Desktop Notification.

There are many filters that we cover for labels. You can trigger it based on following values: IP Address, Visitor name, keyword searched, first referer, referer, first URL visited, URL visited, Page title visited, Browser, OS, Country, Region, City, Tag, Screen Width, Screen Height, Language, Java and Flash. These values can be mixed together!

So, you can define it in a way if a visitor from USA, who his first referer was from google adsense visit checkout page from product listing page, trigger the label and notify you. You will have the graph driven for it, and you get notification, with with help of our live visitor chat feature, you might make use of this trigger and contact your customer and seal the deal!

Top 10 WordPress Plugins for every WordPress sites

There are thousands of plugins to install for WordPress platform, making it a hard decision to decide which plugin is really a must-have. We have analyzed and ran a survey on our customers and publishing list of plugins that every website running WordPress must have.

1. Hitsteps Ultimate Web Analytics

Since our base of survey was our own users, so obviously they all mentioned they cannot run a website without Hitsteps, we second that! It pack most important web analytics features in a simple and unified user interface, allowing you to see list of online visitors, click on them and see pages they see in your website, see click heatmaps and even start a chat with your visitors.

2. WordPress SEO by Yoast

WordPress out of the box is already quite a good platform for SEO but that doesn’t mean you can’t improve it further! Improve your WordPress SEO, Write better content and have a fully optimized WordPress site using Yoast’s WordPress SEO plugin.

3. Visual Composer

Visual Composer is Commercial Drag and Drop Frontend and Backend Page Builder Plugin for WordPress. You will be able to take full control over your WordPress site, build any layout you can imagine – no programming knowledge required. Moreover, now you can choose either work on a backend or move your page building process to frontend and instantly see changes you make.

4. AddThis

Traditionally known as the “sharing tool”, AddThis has taken website tools to the next level through the creation of recommended content and conversion tools while also streamlining and evolving their suite of social tools, including sharing and following buttons. AddThis provides the best sharing, social, recommended content, and conversion tools to help you make your website smarter.

5. WP Super Cache

This plugin generates static html files from your dynamic WordPress blog. After a html file is generated your webserver will serve that file instead of processing the comparatively heavier and more expensive WordPress PHP scripts. A very fast caching engine for WordPress that produces static html files.

6. WordPress Backup to Dropbox

WordPress Backup to Dropbox has been created to give you peace of mind that your blog is backed up on a regular basis. Just choose a day, time and how often you wish your backup to be performed and kick back and wait for your websites files and a SQL dump of its database to be dropped in your Dropbox! Keep your valuable WordPress website, its media and database backed up to Dropbox in minutes with this sleek, easy to use plugin.

7. Google XML Sitemaps

This plugin will generate a special XML sitemap which will help search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask.com to better index your blog. With such a sitemap, it’s much easier for the crawlers to see the complete structure of your site and retrieve it more efficiently. The plugin supports all kinds of WordPress generated pages as well as custom URLs. Additionally it notifies all major search engines every time you create a post about the new content.

8. Contact Form 7

Contact Form 7 can manage multiple contact forms, plus you can customize the form and the mail contents flexibly with simple markup. The form supports Ajax-powered submitting, CAPTCHA, Akismet spam filtering and so on. It is not just another contact form plugin!

9. Wordfence Security

Wordfence starts by checking if your site is already infected. Wordfence do a deep server-side scan of your source code comparing it to the Official WordPress repository for core, themes and plugins. Then Wordfence secures your site and makes it up to 50 times faster.

10. TinyMCE Advanced

This plugin will let you add, remove and arrange the buttons that are shown on the Visual Editor toolbar. It includes 15 plugins for TinyMCE that are automatically enabled or disabled depending on what buttons are chosen. .

5 Rules for a Successful Campaign

We all do campaigns from time to time, some might be successful and some might feel like waste of resources. Question is, how to get most out of every campaign we run?

To answer this question, we need to study our current customer base. What make them use our service/product? More importantly, what problem are we solving?
It must be main focus, if you have no idea what your customers are looking for, then stop right now and use services like SurveyMonkey to ask this question from your customers. Make them engage with your survey by offering something of value once they fill up the survey form.

Once you know your customer base, now it’s time to analyze your campaign source. Is your campaign targeting your existing customers? Then you already know what they are looking for. Go ahead and get most of your result by offering them a new feature, discount or something they all are looking for.

Are you targeting new customers? Then you must go back and see what problem are you solving for your current loyal customers. New customers will most likely have those problems and you’ll be able to help them. Put focus on what you can solve for them.
Make it look big result yet easy to achieve. Make them want to try your product and see if it work for them.

Now, where to run this campaign? If you are targeting your current visitors, then of course, you can run campaign in a frame in your website or use services such as MailChimp to blast email to them (make sure they agree to receive promotional emails, nobody likes spam)

If you are going to tagger target new customers, where is better than Facebook ads?
You might say Google AdWords, but that depends on your competitor. Try your keywords in Google AdWords and see how much is price of your keywords to be appear in homepage.
If that’s very expensive, just forget about Google AdWords. Competition is very high and you’ll lose more than you earn. You might try Microsoft ads system as an alternative where there are less competitors and take it as your advantage.

But Facebook ensure that your ads will be seen, commented or shared among users, thus you’ll get more exposure. Make sure your target correct audience. Try to guess which interests are more likely to attracts your specified audience. Try to narrow down your audience, so that you get more quality exposure. You don’t want people who like vintage gadgets to see your high end product ads!
Try to run few ads and see which text attract more customers.

You’ll need a SEO optimized landing page to bring those users in. It must be as attractive as your homepage, and it must have very clear call to action button. Make sure keywords the is main problem for your users which you are solving, are bold and repeated over.
These way you get some chance to earn organic free clicks from Google and beat all those competitors who are paying expensive funds for their ads.

Lastly, you’ll need to track this incoming and existing visitors. You never can guess why your visitors are not converting unless you track their behavior and see in which step, visitors are dropping. Hitsteps offer real-time web analytics dashboard so that you can watch them as they switch pages, as well as campaign tracking so the you can see how many entered your landing page and went as far as registration page, as far as add to cart page and so on. Just sign up for your free account and put tracking code in each of your pages.

Now you are fully equipped for a campaign success. Run your ads, monitor your audience and pages where visitors are dropping, optimize those weak area, keep changing your ads until you get best outcome and lastly, don’t forget about interacting with comments people leave in your Facebook ads and posts.

Google Chrome is still leader in browsers war

It was not long ago when all of us web developers were screaming and pulling out our hairs over Internet Explorer!

Those days are gone! According to latest updates, Internet Explorer share on browser usage is falling more and more each month. It’s only Advantage is being built in into Windows computers. New version of Internet Explorer 10, is not a bad browser at all, but it’s name still remind us of those sleepless nights trying to fix that small yet big problem in Internet Explorer. We hope that Microsoft’s new browser, Spartan Browser, can come into market as a brand new and bugless browser.

According to Hitsteps Analytics, Google chrome is now leader in Browsers war owning more than half of the market. Firefox, Safari and Internet Explorer have an equal usage rate which is slightly less than Google Chrome. Google Chrome being fast and updated regularly with latest HTML5 and CSS3 technologies, make it popular among users and developers. We hope Spartan browser don’t fall short in this war.

It is very sad to see Opera browser still couldn’t gain any popularity. Recently, Opera ditched it’s own Presto engine in favor of Webkit (used by Google Chrome and Safari) to be able concentrate more on GUI and other aspects of browsers, however, this decision didn’t improve any of it’s ranks in browsers war.

Hitsteps analytics monitor type of devices such as Desktop, Tablet and Mobile phone, therefor we can give following statistics about users device. as you can see, Desktop have biggest rate among our users.

Will Google Chrome stay leader in browsers war? It’s likely to stay leader and we hope so.

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Why Do Web Analytics Give Different Numbers

Here is a fact. If you install 10 different web analytics in your website, you are going to get 10 different numbers!

It is a common question for those who discover world of analytics and go beyond using Google Analytics as only option. We at Hitsteps Analytics receive this question way often, so we have decided to describe it here over our blog. Your question is usually “Shouldn’t they report same number of visitors?”

In theory, yes, they should! but there are many facts to consider. The way each analytics service collect data, how we determine a returning visitor as a visitor versus continue of previous session thus, it don’t end up as new visitor and the way we filter the data. (yes, we do and we do it for good reasons)

Way we collect data is using Javascript and img tags. If user don’t have javascript installed, we can still track user using img tag. (think of old browsers and WAP mobile users) however many other analytics services, doesn’t collect information from img tags and simply ignore those visitors.

If you have used log based analytics such as AWstats, they give you information about every single hits even on each images and background images and it cause numbers to go crazy high but then it is not accurate when we consider proxies and cache servers. Once a page is cached, it will be served via cache and it won’t hit the server and therefor, AWstats and similiar log based analytics, won’t know about it and data is missing from reports.

Javascript based analytics (such as Google Analytics, Clicky and Hitsteps Analytics) overcomes this by having browser itself trigger event that record the transaction. Again, how it is done can influence what is shown in reports. Most of other analytics softwares missing data from visitors without Javascripts. Hitsteps use alternative img based tracking to make browser trigger event and record the transaction.

Then, we come to position of the codes. We believe analytics shouldn’t reduce speed of your website, so we only load code after webpage is fully opened. It will cause those who close website before it load not to be tracked. some other analytics might track those users in expense of slower website load time.

All web analytics use rules to detect if a returning visitor pageview should be considered as a new visit or just continue of last session. They usually have a timeout of 30 minutes or so to consider new pageview as a new visit. However in hitsteps, we continuously ping visitors (that is how we calculate most accurate bounce rate) to see if visitor is still on your website. so we won’t count your visitor as new visit if he kept website open. (you can see list of idle visitors in your hitsteps dashboard)

Next step is the way we detect a visitor. We use a mix of IP address, cookie and even user agent to make detect if next page view is viewed by same user. Visitors IP Address might change dynamically over mobile network or home networks and some analytics might consider them as a new visitor, yet we have multiple layers to detect same visitor even if IP Address is changed, Cookie is cleared or Useragent is changed (by upgrading to newer version of browser)

And lastly, we do filter your visitors. We have an active anti-spammer and ani-bot filter to make sure your calculated hits are real humans who actually come to your website. We do block all those automated bots who follow a list of victim website to go inside, scan for emails, fill up form with spam emails and such.

That is why sometimes you see differences in your hitsteps dashboard and other analytics. Hitsteps Ultimate Analytics offers accurate, botless analytics reports which numbers differ from basic analytics services.

Hitsteps now offer free licenses

Big news, We are excited to announce Hitsteps is available for free now!

Your account is eligible to use free license if your website don’t have much of page views.
1,000 page views per month allowance is good for blogger, photographers and newly developed websites.
What are you waiting for? Get your free plugin at http://wordpress.org/plugins/hitsteps-visitor-manager/ for WordPress or http://extensions.joomla.org/extensions/extension/site-management/analytics/hitsteps-visitor-manager for Joomla

View hitsteps feature in our website: www.hitsteps.com/features.php

Google will review “Not Provided” withholding keywords

Google has been moved to secure search in October 2011 and slowly it applied to more and more users. It was a shocking news to publishers to see some of the keywords are hidden. Now, Google have hidden almost 95% of the keywords to protect users privacy, but it is time that Google reexamine this issue. Google is now looking for a better solution.

Amit Singhal, Google search chief mentioned in a conversation that:

Over a period of time, we [Google’s search and ad sides] have been looking at this issue…. we’re also hearing from our users that they would want their searches to be secure … it’s really important to the users. We really like the way things have gone on the organic side of search.

I have nothing to announce right now, but in the coming weeks and months as [we] find the right solution, expect something to come out.

It is the video for this conversation: