Episode 42 - Working with your website stats

Are you looking at your website stats? What are you looking for? Do you see the numbers and aren't sure what they mean? In this episode, we discuss where you can find your website stats, what you should be looking at, and what you can do with them to grow your business.

Where do you find your website stats and your competitors stats?

Did you know you can find a lot of data about your site and your competitors' sites? We use the following sites to look at our stats and the stats of other sites:


Alexa is one of the main sources for finding general information about your site and others. The site must be one of the top one million websites to get good information. The site will tell you the international and U.S. web ranking, bounce rate, time on the site, and lots more. You can find out what sites are linking to the site and key search words and phrases.

Similar Web

Similar Web is also a great resource for looking up your site and your competitors. It can also help you find competitors you didn't know about. This site will tell you about paid vs. free traffic and how people are getting to websites. We use this site to look up competitors' sites most often.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics will give you some interesting information about your own site. This is the best site for getting demographic information about your visitors. You can get information about age, sex, location, browser information, and lots more. You can only use Google Analytics for your own site.

CPanel - Awstats

In your website's CPanel, there are a number of programs you can use to find out more about your website traffic. We use Awstats to look up stats for our website. Awstats gives us a lot of great information like referring sites, top posts, time of day people come to the site, and top keywords and phrases. This is our main source for information about our own sites. When looking at numbers, you want to look at unique visitors and visitors. Hits is not an important number. A hit is a call for information. Every item that loads on your site creates a hit, every graphic, every script. Accounting In Focus has over 50,000 unique visitors each month and over 1 million hits, because there are so many items loading on each page.

What stats are important?

 Depending on what you want to do with your site, there are a number of stats that could be important.

  1. Visitors and unique visitors - How many people are coming to your site? Is the trend increasing or decreasing? Do you have a lot of return visitors to your site? How many pages are they viewing when they come to your site?
  2. Day of the week and time of day - Are some days more popular than others? What time of day are people coming to your website?
  3. Where is your traffic coming from? - Is a particular social media channel working well for you? What sites are referring traffic?
  4. New visitors vs. returning visitors - Are you seeing a lot of new traffic or are your visitors very loyal? Do people come to your site once and never return?
  5. Bounce rate - Do people come to your site and then bounce back to the search that brought them there? For more about bounce rate, check out episode 41 on SEO.
  6. Downloads - If you offer downloadable content like free PDFs or an email signup freebie, are people downloading that content? Are some downloads doing better than others?
  7. Popular posts and pages - Which topics are creating traction on your site?
  8. Key search words and phrases - Which keywords and search phrases are bringing traffic to your site?

How can you use your stats to grow your business?

When you know how to use your stats, they can help you grow your business by helping you develop new products and content. Once you know what is popular on your site, you can expand those topics with new content or products.

Check your headlines and headings on posts that are not preforming well to see if you can increase search traffic to those posts. Check out our episode on SEO for more information.  When running ads, you can use the day of the week and time of day stats to run ads at peak times to reach your ideal customer. When promoting posts on your website, promote posts that are already gaining traction. You know those posts have appeal.

More questions on this topic?

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