Web Analytics, Web Marketing

Serving Ads – The Smart Way

A lot of businesses look at serving ads on their website in order to monetize it.  Having a good system in place for managing ads is very important, especially as your site and the number of ads grow.

As a big fan of open source software, I recommend that you check out the OpenX ad server.  Here are some of the features:

  • Easily manage your ads – OpenX makes it easy for you to create, edit and delete several different ad types.  In fact, you can set up your advertisers as users and allow them to manage their own ads!
  • You control delivery – You determine who sees what ads.  Limit delivery based on location, date or time and even custom variables.
  • Measure performance of ads – You can easily provide reports to your advertisers regarding the performance of their ads.

I have set up OpenX for several sites and have found it easy to work with.  If you have any questions about it, please ask!

Web Analytics

Google Analytics: Using Goals and Events

Google Analytics is a great free tool for tracking valuable metrics on your website.  It has a bunch of standard reports that can tell you how many visitors come to your site, where they came from, what browser they use, what pages they visited, what your most popular pages are, and what keywords are driving the most traffic, just to name a few.   Today, I want to help you make use of two important features of this analytics tool: goals and events.

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Web Analytics

Website Traffic Sources

Website traffic can come from different sources:

  • Direct – Direct traffic is anyone who types your domain name into the browser and visits your site, well, directly. There are some technical exceptions to this, but generally this type of traffic is the fruit of your offline marketing efforts.
  • Referral – Referrals are when a visitors clicks a link to your site from another web page. You could be paying to have another website link to yours or a link could be posted voluntarily by someone on another site; all of these are considered referrals.
  • Organic – Organic traffic occurs when someone performs a search on a search engine, such as Google, and clicks on your site link in the results page. This type of traffic generally requires that you optimize your site so that it ranks high on the results page for your targeted keywords.