What to Look for in a Hit Counter

Written by Glenn Haertlein

What to Look for in a Hit Counter

:::It's All Aboutrepparttar Numbers::: If you want to know how many people are coming to your website; if you want to know how "sticky" your website is; if you want to know what pages of your website are attractingrepparttar 131523 most attention, you have to knowrepparttar 131524 numbers. And to getrepparttar 131525 numbers you need, you need a hit counter that does more than just give you a head count.

Having a hit counter (or stat counter) onrepparttar 131526 front page of your website is nice, but most web savvy individuals know that those numbers can be artificially inflated. While a big number can be impressive, you as a webmaster need something more than a head count. You need to know what those numbers mean, and what changes need to be made, if any, to improve your site's popularity.

:::So, what does a good stat counter do?::: A good stat counter counts. No kidding, right? True, butrepparttar 131527 key to a good stat counter lies in what your stat counter counts. A good stat counter should trackrepparttar 131528 following kinds of statistics:

* First time visits * Return visits * Page loads * Visitor path * Popular pages * Entry/exit pages * Visit length

A first time visit is exactly that. It's a visit from someone who has never been to your site before. Most stat counters will create a cookie for people who come to your site. If a visitor comes who has no cookie, they are counted as a first time visitor. Now that's not foolproof. Ifrepparttar 131529 person deletes all of his or her cookies and then returns to your site later, he or she will again be counted as a first time visitor, but then again no system is 100 percent perfect.

A return visit is someone who has returned to your site within an allotted amount of time. Again, a cookie is used to measure this, and most good stat counters will let you setrepparttar 131530 amount of time between visits. For example, you might not want to count someone as a return visitor who has only been away for ten minutes, but you may want to count them as a return if they have come back after thirty minutes or more.

A page load is every time a page from your website is loaded on a user's screen. This is where numbers can really become artificially inflated. Let's say you use a meta tag to refresh your page every two minutes. Every timerepparttar 131531 page refreshes, it will count as a page load. So if John Q. Public is visiting that page and he's there for six minutes, his visit will count as three hits instead of one. What'srepparttar 131532 harm in that, you wonder, it makes for great numbers. While you do wnat to keep track of page loads to determine things like page popularity, equating page loads with actual visits will give you a reading not based entirely in reality. You need to know if 1,000 page loads is really 1,000 actual visitors, or just twenty people who are really click happy.

The visitor path is a good way to find out where your visitors are coming from and what advertising campaigns and hit-for-clicks programs are paying off. A good stat counter will show you what path a visitor followed to get to your site. Did they come from a a Google or Yahoo search, did they come from one of your hits-for-clicks programs, did they come in through a web ring you joined, or did they just happen to blow in? Knowingrepparttar 131533 visitor path can give you a good indication about whether your search engine optimization is effective, or if a particular ad campaign or banner is paying off.

Does your website need an IP Address?? Does it really matter?

Written by Domenic Macchione

A Web site hosted with a "dedicated IP" never changes location. The advantages of having a dedicated IP number is that dedicated IP's tend to lend themselves much better to advanced web development, they are much easier to work with and they are more compatible with server side applications. So why donít all hosting companies offer all their customers a dedicated IP? There are numerous reasons ranging from cost torepparttar availability of IP addresses. In reality this is a hotly debated topic that no one can prove which is better, or in reality;repparttar 131521 battle is are dedicated IPís per website better forrepparttar 131522 owner of that domain and his web presence then a shared IP environment. This in my opinion, isrepparttar 131523 real question.

I like to break things down in real laymen terms and forget all about SEO optimization jargon; IT terms etc and letís examine at it fromrepparttar 131524 point of physical street address.

Shared IPís is like an apartment building where you can have one address i.e. first Avenue but then have 1000 apartment numbers. The mail and people show up torepparttar 131525 front door andrepparttar 131526 gatekeeper lets them in and points them inrepparttar 131527 right direction. The people usually findrepparttar 131528 right apartment. A Dedicated IP per website is like living in a single detached house and your address is 3 First Avenue Ė The people knock onrepparttar 131529 door you answer Ė faster and less chance of something going wrong. The search engines ďBOTSĒ as they are called come and knock on doors, read and examine you site, determine how many people want your site, look at certain content etc and then leave and compilerepparttar 131530 information for their search engines. Do they penalize a website for being in an apartment building? More than likely NO! Now do you want to be in that apartment building if you neighbour is a spam artist, or do you want to be in that apartment ifrepparttar 131531 people above you a running a high volume mail order business? Sometime you need to wait forrepparttar 131532 elevator to come get down to leave or your customers waiting atrepparttar 131533 front door because of you neighbour high use ofrepparttar 131534 front entrance.

Cont'd on page 2 ==>
ImproveHomeLife.com © 2005
Terms of Use