FN SECURE: How to Keep Track of Your Blog Visitors

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How to Keep Track of Your Blog Visitors

Well, you started a blog and day by day you nurtured it with constant and relevant postings. You also filled your sidebar(s) with great gadgets. And, submitted your blog link to the major search engines like Google, Yahoo, Live, and Askjeeves. One month passed, and it seems no visitors came or you cannot know their numbers. Next month some of your friends visited your blog and left comments. Finally you can see someone visited. But you realize this kind of informal tracking is not comparative or coherent enough.
As a newbie blogger I am sure you want to track the hits on your blog. Tracking can also help in following and converting one time visitors to regular loyal visitors. I also faced similar problems during my primordial stage. I surfed the internet to learn more about the concept of tracking and came to know the best services available. Further, since paid tracking was not an option and I looked for something accurate and free. So you might want to track your visitors and visiting trend like Page views, Unique Visitors, Loyalty or Returning Count, Time on Site, Country, ISP (Internet service Provider), Referral Links, Outgoing Links or Exit Links.
Don't worry; there are solutions as every problem has one. What do you think? Am not I speaking the truth? Oh leave it, but that's the truth. And your problem has got some solutions. So, read on and discover those solutions. Lol.
In the internet there are so many sites which provide Visitors Tracking Service. Some of them are free to use and some of them are limited. Hold on, I will be discussing those solutions with their plus points and limitations.
MYBLOGLOG
mybloglogMybloglog is a site maintained by Yahoo. Submit your nascent blog to this directory and opt for the free service. Then put a small code snippet just after the header of your template and you will be getting your visitors count easily. This website will give you an entire picture of your visitors like Referring Link, visited Urls (Universal Resource Locators) and Offsite clicks (Exit links). But I would like you to customize your settings so as to exclude your visits to your blogs. Should you not do this you will be presented a bloated picture as you happen to visit your blog very often for testing purposes.
First of all know your IP address. "An Internet Protocol (IP) address is a numerical identification (logical address) that is assigned to devices participating in a computer network. " A sample IP would be "172.31.255.255" Depending on your computer and or private network, your address can be either static or dynamic. If a dynamic address then make use of the asterisk as wildcards. e.g. 172.****. This will exclude your visit from its count. LOL, you are done. You can also exclude those links which you don't want to be tracked as your Exit Links. Just look for the available settings inside the site.
From the next day you will be getting clearer picture of your visitors. It will also show top exit links of that day. This will show you which of your links happen to be the Popular Link. Its Recent Visitor widget will show which Mybloglog users came to your site. But it's primarily a blog directory with facility of interaction among bloggers. And as far as the tracking service is concerned it is but a fringe service. It is for this reason it shows your visitors with limited parameters. But when you happen to be there with your blog there is no harm in using this service as it is free. No doubt there is a Paid option but I don't recommend that for new bloggers. So, are you there?
STATCOUNTER
stat Statcounter is one of the common names among bloggers. It is easy to use and has two plans one Free and obviously the other is the Paid one. In the free version you will have to reset your counter after 500 Visits or entries. Obviously, you will loss all counts after you reset your counter. But it is the one of the best options available for amateur and newbie bloggers. Not all bloggers monetize their blog as monetizing is not an easy affair. So, when there is no money what's the use of expensing dollars? No doubt if you have stream of income from your blog, you may think of the Paid plan.
Statcounter has many options and can show your stats from different angles. It shows you weekly, monthly views with colorful graphs. There are so many options for the counter and you can choose a variety of colors to match or contrast your template. You can also put a small button on the site also or use an invisible counter. Here also you will have to exclude your IP address so as to get a real picture. But if you happen to visit your blog from multiple browsers and computers then you will have to go through the blocking process for each.
Some features:
  • Tutorials for installations in different platforms like Blogger or WordPress.
  • Track your outgoing links and the entries which exited from such links.
  • Use a lens icon to get more detail on visitors.
  • Super Path that shows visits from every possible angle with visitor entry and exit links.
  • Number of visitors from each search engine and keyword performance.
  • Map over lay showing visitor locations.
  • Receive your total stats in your mail box.
What more do you want? So what do you say? Are you using Statcounter or yet to sign up there?
FEEDBURNER
feedbAll your posts are known as feeds as they change very often. To syndicate them or make those feeds available for easy reading in feed readers you are required to burn your feed and acquire a unique address of your feed. Feedburner is the leader in this field. Google acquired Feedburner and is integrating its free features into the Google system by the end of February. However, its reporting feature is being closed since Google has another such service called Analytics. Don't worry I will be discussing Analytics in detail.
Feedburner will continue to show your feed syndication stats. It will count users are following your feed in MyYahoo, Msnlive,Igoogle, Google reader, Outlook or from browsers like Safari or IE7, Bloglines or any other feed service. The greater the Reach of your feeds the better it is for your blog. Further you can download the report in .Csv or .xls format for your perusal. I hope some new features might be added to the site for your benefit. And if you want to know about such new features then keep tab with this blog. So, have you burned your feed in feedburner? Come on, burn your feed as it is not that complicated and you should need only an hour to apply your knowledge.


ANALYTICS

anaAs I said earlier here I go with Analytics. This service I must say is the best reporting service out there, having a wide range of features. The most important news is that it is FREE. The reporting is available for all sorts of customization. Among other things it shows:
- total number of visits
- average Time on Site and Bounce rate
- map overiew of visitor language, city and ISP
- content overview which drills down to a micro level the popularity of one's contents
- the top landing and top exit pages
- keyword tracking (you can write articles focusing on those keywords)
- traffic source overview, a break down of referring sites, search engines & direct traffic
The Site overlay Feature is a very useful feature of the Analytics that will show you the popularity of your pages by showing percentage of uses. By this feature you can know the popularity of your page and insert Advertisement on that very spot, if you have monetization of your blog in mind. There are so many advanced features Available in the Analytics like Google Ad word Monitoring and also Google Adsense Monitoring. You can even set Goals and create Funnels. And even you can measure the success of each Goal. These kinds of features are not really required by amateur bloggers. So if you are a newbie bloggers please don't bother about these features just yet.
Here also you will have to exclude your visit to know the exact picture. A question might be popping in your mind about the mechanism to exclude your visit in Analytics, isn't it? Don't worry read this very useful and simple article to remove your visits.
First of all, you will have to verify your site by putting a code snippet just above the closing body tag of your template. After some days you will see the consequences when there will be enough data to present a comparative figure. Analytics will not report anything instantly rather it will show one day old data. It takes time for the site to tabulate and compare various kinds of datas related to your page views or hits. But as far as the parameters and micro level reporting is concerned Analytics is the best.
FEEDJIT
feedjitFeedjit Live widget will show your recent visitors but not in any great detail. It will show your visitors from these parameters
  • Which city and country your visitors are in.
  • Which website they arrived from.
  • Which page they visited on your website.
  • Which external link they clicked to leave your site, if any.
You can install widgets like:
  • Live traffic Feed.
  • Live traffic Map.
  • Page Popularity Widget.
Its 'Popular feed' widget is very good as it will show the popularity of your posts by percentage. Certainly at the beginning you will need such stats. It is very easy to install the widget as right from the site it will be installed in WordPress or Blogger or Typad. Just sign up with a valid mail id and install right way their widgets. Color customization of widgets is available and you can exclude your visit. Further all your data will not be available for your perusal as no records are kept by the site. But instantly you can have informations about your recent visitors. You can know the Referring links, Country/City of visit, Browser, Operating system and Time of visit by just pressing the relevant link from inside your website or blog. You should exclude your visit from the Option Link of your widget. And from next visit your hit will not be tracked. Now Feedjit is evolving and may be it will have more useful features regarding visitors tracking in future. The pro version of Feedjit has got more features as compared to the Free version. As it involves no coding or installation of any codes inside your template, it is very easy to use and useful for newbie. A useful feature of Feedjit widgets is that it will make available your feeds as well as your blog in the Blogosphere and following those links you can get visitors or serious readers. So, are you using? Come on, it is free. Lol.
MY RECOMMENDATION
There are many other service providers, like StatMeter and HiStat. But I've discussed the most talked and widely used services. Sometimes, you will note that some visits are tracked by one service provider but not by a different one. But this anomalies should wash out, as in the end you will get an accurate picture. And if you use multiple services then you will end up receiving more or less the same stats. I recommend you use StatCounter for instant reporting. But you must use Analytics should for micro level reporting of traffic. You will be missing if you don't use both Analytics and StatCounter. So how about using two services at the same time? Of course it is the right option to get a comparative picture.
So, I wish happy blogging and smart tracking of your visitors. I also shower lots of good wishes in your endeavor of blogging and making relevant information available to the knowledge seekers. Remember you are no less important as far as providing knowledge to others.
Thank you for going through this post.

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