Online Audiences and the Paradox of Web Traffic

If you are as much of an analytics nut as I am, then the video below is for you. It features Dr Matthew Hindman, Assistant Professor of Political Science at Arizona State University discussing online analytics. Dr. Hindman uses a variety of data from Hitwise to go very deep into the true analytics and much further than a basic web report.

From the overview, "Using three years of daily Web traffic data, and new models adapted from financial mathematics, this talk examines large-scale variation in Web traffic. These data show that Web traffic is highly heteroskedastic, with smaller sites having orders of magnitude more variation in the relative number of visitors they receive. These consistent patterns allow us to provide reasonable estimates of how likely it is Google will still be the most visited US site a year from now".

Creating Usable Javascript Links

As I surf the Web, I come across countless Web sites that use one of the following methods to invoke a javascript function when someone clicks a link:

<a href="javascript:somefunction()">Click to invoke somefunction</a>

or

<a href="#" onclick="somefunction()">Click to invoke somefunction</a>

Unfortunately, these types of links are completely unusable for anyone with javascript disabled (and, for that matter, the second example is completely useless to people that can’t “click” the links, such as people using older handheld devices). Even worse, the second example can be extremely annoying, as it focuses the screen back to the top of the Web page when you click it.

Make Sure Your Domain Works Without the “WWW”

As I process more and more business cards over at my new startup, one thing I’ve noticed on (unfortunately) a regular basis are companies who haven’t setup their domain names properly. The company domain name works when you type the full “www.companyname.com” but if you only type “companyname.com” you get nothing. The errors range from a server error to a dns error.

For most hosts it takes only a minute to get the non-www domain working. Check out the search results on Google for information on how to set it up for your particular host. Even domain name providers like GoDaddy have instructions on setting up the non-www version.

Don’t lose traffic and more importantly potential customers because of something so simple!

ARIA Landmark Roles – Increasing Accessibility

I stumbled across a neat tool to be used during Web site development the other day. The tool uses javascript to examine the page and presents you with an overlay report of the accessibility issues in the page. The tool was developed by and is available from Accessify. It’s called the “Quick Page Accessibility Test.” Installing the app is as simple as dragging it to your Favorites/Bookmarks bar. Then, whenever you visit a page, you can click on the bookmark and the accessibility tester will pop over the page you’re viewing (complete with context overlays).

Anyway, after I installed the application and tested one of my pages, I came across an accessibility warning I had never encountered before. The warning message looked something like “This appears to be a list of links. Perhaps this should be marked up with ARIA landmark role ‘Navigation’.” I had never heard of ARIA landmark roles, so I ran off to try to do some research on the subject. About all I was able to find in my first attempt were some abstracts from the W3C.

Search Engine Marketing Strategies – Panel Recap

Editor’s note: Below is a recap of the “Small Business Technology Summit – Search Engine Marketing Strategies” panel at the Small Business Technology Summit held in NYC.

Speaker: Harry Brooks, Network Solutions

Providing guidance to the community about how to use SEM.

Five basic steps:

  1. Build Content – SEO
  2. Build Backlinks – SEO
  3. Launch Your Pay-per-Click Campaign
  4. Analyze Your Results
  5. Repeat

YellowPages is right where they want, when the customer wants it. Very successful ROI.

Build Content – Identify Profitable Keywords

User Interviews – Analysis Simplified

You’ve conducted the interviews – enlightening weren’t they? It’s now time to put all that information that’s in your head down on paper, and pull it all together into a complete picture.

This article follows on from our previous article which gave tips on how to conduct the interviews themselves. Here we give you some possible techniques to use whilst analysing your interviews, helping mould your results into something tangible.

Form your findings into a narration

After interviews you’ll find that you’ve lots of interesting thoughts and ideas bouncing around your head, but probably in no clear structure. The results will be much easier to understand and convey to others if they are ordered into a clear narration.

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