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I have a website that allows users to register for accounts, login, and renew an annual membership fee. They can also update their personal profile, their personal profile, look at a list of their employees, make bulk payments for their employees, view receipts and invoices, etc.

For non-members it's a regular website with a lot of pages, but for members, it has quite a few member only areas, with more to come (Such as forums). It also has a job listings page, course registrations, etc.

What are some useful "metrics" I can collect to give me meaningful information about the site, that I can share with my clients. I really don't know a lot about collecting data about this kind of thing, and would like to learn.

I already have a dashboard where the admins can view/export registrations this week and registrations by week for the past 30 weeks. I've been able to show them that registrations spiked after sending out an email about the new system.

I'm think I'll also be adding stats about how often users update their profiles and how many users have updated their profile that day/week.

Thanks

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You are asking us to guess what stats and metrics have value for your clients. If you are looking for generic site metrics, check out what Google Analytics and similar services gather. –  Yannis Rizos Oct 19 '11 at 3:53
    
What do your clients pay for? Update the question to include the value they expect so we can tell you to measure that. –  S.Lott Oct 19 '11 at 9:57
    
this would be good to move over to the Webmasters SE –  Ken Liu Jul 14 '12 at 2:45

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Robert has a good set of metrics for site use.

For performance metrics I collect (for all page):

  • number of visits to the page.
  • total time spend serving the page.
  • average time spent serving the page.
  • maximum time spent serving the page.

For application pages it can useful to record separate statistics for gets and posts. This information can be extremely useful in finding bottlenecks and selecting pages to optimize.

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Time spent serving a page is typically only a small fraction of page load time, from a site visitor's perspective. –  Ken Liu Jul 14 '12 at 2:46
    
@KenLiu For applications, time to process the request and serve the response can be significantly more than the rest of the load time. It also tends to increase over time. The other factors of page load time can usually be dealt with at design time. –  BillThor Jul 14 '12 at 4:10
    
Agreed, but it's important to consider the page load time since it's an important part of the performance of a site. –  Ken Liu Jul 14 '12 at 5:12

What do your clients want to know? Collect data on that.

That said, at a minimum I would collect (per web page):

  1. Number of first-page views.

  2. Number of pages viewed until abandonment (user leaves site). This can be graphed to give an idea of how long people stay on the site.

  3. Number of view per page. Which pages are attracting more interest than others?

Stats will differ depending on whether it is a web app or web page. Most sites are a combination of both; Amazon is a web page until you want to buy something, then it is a web app.

It wouldn't surprise me if it turned out that most websites have certain "hot spots," i.e. pages that are overwhelmingly viewed more than others. Your clients want to know things like that, so they can attempt to reproduce the attraction effect for other pages/products.

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I'd also track searches and which links are clicked. It gives you an idea of ease of finding stuff. –  World Engineer Oct 19 '11 at 3:47
    
I'm tracking a lot of that "basic" stuff via Google Analytics which I really haven't looked at much since installing (Client has access though). I'll start taking a look into what kind of stats it has been gathering. –  Brandon Wamboldt Oct 19 '11 at 4:04

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