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Google Analytics – Social Reports

By | Analytics | No Comments

 

With Social Media sending more traffic to sites, Google Analytics now has more reports to analyse that traffic. Check them out in your interface now, you can find them under the Traffic Sources section;

Google Analytics Measuring Social Media

 

One of the best graphs available in here is the Social Shares graph, which is available in the Overview report. Because Social Media is more of a branding and communication tool, rather than a direct sales tool, it is sometimes hard to justify the investment of time and money into it. If you have goals set up in your analytics account, the Social Shares graph will be able to show you how often social media was seen by the customers who converted on your site, and how often it was the most recent campaign for a converting customer.

Social Share Report - Google Analytics

The other reports are pretty self explanatory, but two are quite new.

 

The Social Plugins report shows how often there was interaction with any social media plugins on your site – this report will require some extra set up to help it run if you want to see results for plugins other than Google Plus.

 

The Social Visitors flow shows how customers from social media channels move through your site – and should be compared to your other channels. For example, do social media users want different things from your site?

 

 

Google Analytics – How To Use Custom Variables

By | Analytics | No Comments

 

Having learned a lot at Google Engage’s Advanced Analytics seminar last week, we’re keen to write it all down, to make sure that others can discover these underutilised features of Google Analytics. First stop, Custom Variables.

 

So, what are Custom Variables?

 

Custom variables help you with that very important aspect of data analysis – segmentation. Using custom variables, you can segment the behaviour of users on your site depending on a range of characteristics. Just a few examples might be;

– Visitors who viewed video.

– Visitors who are logged in

– Visitors interested in certain content (e.g. cooking category of pages)

 

You can make custom variables at 3 levels;

  1.  Visitors – e.g. what country are they from? Are they a subscriber?
  2. Visits – e.g. visits including a blog view, or visits including a video view
  3. Pages – e.g. when they saw a particular page of the blog, or content category.

 

The only thing you need to remember is that custom variables either have to be things about the page they visit (e.g. the content category or a subscriber page) or something they tell you (e.g. their location, gender, or language). Custom Variables aren’t some magic Google Analytics feature which can give you additional information about your visitors – YOU have to assign custom variables to visitors, so you need to know those things about them already.

 

How Do Custom Variables Work?

 

To make these custom variables work, Google Analytics puts a cookie on a visitors browser to allocate a custom variable to them. However, there are limits to how many custom variables you can use in a single request.

 

The sum of all your custom variables cannot exceed 5 in any given request

– A Visitor level metric occupies a whole slot for 2 years
–  A visit level metric occupies a slot for just one whole visit
– A pageview only uses more than one slot if you want to do more than one custom variable on one page

 

The code will look like this

_setCustomVar(Index,name,value,opt_scope)

 

Where:

Index = Slot and has to be a number between 1 and 5

Name is a string, e.g. “gender” or “video view”

Value is also a string, e.g. “male”, “yes” or “no

Opt_scope is the level of the variable (where visitor =1, visit =2, page =3).

 

If the viewing of the page itself results in the custom variable being assigned then the code needs to be put between _setAccount and _trackPageview.

 

If the visitor has to do something on the page to have a custom variable attributed (e.g. choose a language), then you must attach the code to visitor action, like onClick events.

 

For more information on how to use the code, visit the Google Developers page.

 

Tips for Custom Variables

 

– Before implementing custom variables, check for old ones.

 

– If you have complex tracking requirements, where you have a mix of page- and session-level variables that might collide, you should build a slot matrix to ensure that session-level variables do not inadvertently over-ride page-level variables.

 

– Similar to when you use Google Analytics event tracking or URL building – name things sensibly, so that in the future it is a system which is easy for other people to understand, and you also need to make sure there is no duplication of any of the names.

 

SEO for Foreign Languages

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Optimising a website in foreign languages uses all the same SEO strategies as optimising a normal site, but sometimes there are slight nuances. There are also some tasks which you will have to complete in addition to your normal ones. Here we cover the most important differences between optimising for your native language and optimising for foreign languages.

 

Regular Tasks

 

Keyword Research

Just like we do separate keyword research for each English language country you optimise for (e.g. U.S. searchers looking for ‘fancy dress’ may be more literal than those in Australia), we have to do unique keyword research for any additional language we want to optimise for. It is no good to simply translate your English keywords – these might not be at all related to what users of that language actually search for.  Direct translations rarely work – an English language sign in our Shanghai apartment block politely asked residents “Please do not allow your dog to #&%* on the lawn” – I’m pretty sure they didn’t mean to use that four letter word.

 

Start your keyword from scratch, focussing on that particular language and a specific location.

 

Linking Strategies

The technical aspects of link building will not change depending on the language you use, but what will change is the type of places you consider for your links. For example, in China, microblogging and forums are very popular, whereas distributed content is less so. Do thorough research into the market you are optimising for to understand more about how they use the internet. Links using the target language, on sites within your target country, will be the most valuable by far.

 

Choosing your search engine

Here in Australia,  there is not much problem in putting most of your SEO focus on Google because Bing and Yahoo have such low market shares. However, in the US, the market share is much bigger, and so it is likely worth considering optimising for Bing as well.

 

When you go to other countries there are even more differences. Baidu grew to be China’s most popular search engine because it’s algorithm better understood the way the Chinese language works. In Korea, the most popular search engine is Naver, and in Russia it is Yandex. Remember to consider search engines other than Google, depending on the country you are optimising for.

 

Extra Tasks

Targeted Domains

If possible, it is better for your site to have a local domain in the country you are targeting. E.g. a .cn domain in China, rather than using the same domain for all your different countries.

 

Multilingual Markup

In December last year, Google introduced multilingual markup. The markup will help your user find the most appropriate content for them as well as helping Google understand who the target for each of your pages is.

 

On each page you can put a new tag

<link rel=”alternate” hreflang=”target language” href=”the link you want to send them to“>

e.g.

<link rel=”alternate” hreflang=”cn” href=”cn.moomumedia.com”>

 

If you need help optimising a site for foreign languages, give us a call for a no obligation discussion on how we could help.

 

Multilingual Search and Other ‘New’ Things

By | MooMu News | No Comments

 

multilingual SEO

 

Say hello to our new Facebook cover picture – the idea of which is to showcase our ability to help companies targeting international markets by providing multilingual SEO, PPC and other marketing activities. This is a new promotion for us, but it actually isn’t a new activity.  We have been helping international sites optimise their sites in over a dozen languages since our inception in 2008…we just forgot to tell everyone about it, whoops.

 

It seems like fate that around the time MooMu Media decides to promote it’s focus on multilingual online marketing, Google also promotes multilingual search through the release of Google input.

 

Google has long allowed Chinese speakers to use Pinyin to type in Mandarin characters, but the release of Google Input has extended language typing ability to over 70 languages. You can switch between Hindi, Mandarin, Cyrillic and many others, with a simple click, and then switch back just as easily.

 

Simply download the extension from the Chrome Store (for free), choose the keyboard you want, and then access it with a simple click in your browser, to see the keyboard on your screen like this.

Google Input Russian

 

Now here I am typing in Russian, здравствуйте!

 

Unlike the Google Pinyin download,  you can only use Google Input to type within Chrome, and I guess Google means it particularly for Search. I actually had a bit of trouble using it in our CMS, where it would only allow me to use it in certain fields. Well, that’s fine, that’s why we have cut and paste!

 

Weekly Topics

Our final ‘new’ thing to talk about is our series of ‘Weekly Topics’. We are going to be coordinating all our social media activity and blog posts to focus on one topic each week.  We think this is a good way to dive deep into a topic each week, but of course it doesn’t mean we aren’t going to talk about big things when they happen! This weeks topic is multilingual marketing and languages on the web, because we are celebrating our new ‘re-brand’ as a multilingual online marketing agency.

 

Next week’s topic will be Advanced Google Analytics – following the excellent seminars we attended yesterday at the Google Sydney Engage programme – we have learnt a lot and can’t wait to share it with you!

 

We have a lot of ideas for upcoming weeks, but if you ever want to suggest an idea, no problem! Just hit us up on Facebook, Twitter, Google + or right here in the comments.

 

 

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