Increasing Your Conversion Rates: 50 Tips for Ecommerce Sites

By , December 28, 2018 2:39 am


You can convert more of your traffic into sales without having to spend a lot of money. There are hundreds of ways to improve your conversion rate and the persuasiveness/stickiness of your website, many of which can be done very quickly and most will cost you close to nothing to implement.

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You can convert more of your traffic into sales without having to spend a lot of money. There are hundreds of ways to improve your conversion rate and the persuasiveness/stickiness of your website, many of which can be done very quickly and most will cost you close to nothing to implement.

1. Use real customer testimonials with authentic customer photos…no stock photography. Shoppers can quickly tell the difference.

2. Make sure your marketing effort attracts qualified traffic. Example, if you sell Digital cameras, don’t advertise that you sell macro lens just to get more traffic to your site. This may drive more visitors, but they are visitors with no intent to purchase, thus decreasing your conversion rate.

3. Get a toll-free number and make sure the placement of that number on your site is prominent and consistent.

4. Include “points of reassurance?at every “point of action? Example ?if you are requesting that a viewer provide you with their e-mail address, clearly state that privacy is very important to you and that you will not share that information with any other party.

5. Use SSL (secure server certificates from a well known SSL authority) and make sure that the user knows you are using it. Display a prominent “Secure server” note at the top of the page.

6. Build trust, subscribe to a service like VeriSign, Thawte or ScanAlert and Prominently place these logos to reassure your customer that you care about the security of their information.

7. Have a clearly defined privacy policy and link to it from all pages.

8. Include a physical address on your site.

9. Don’t always concentrate on just making the “buy now?buttons the most prominent on every page, but rather concentrate on styling the “primary action?buttons the most prominently on every page. Example ?you sell books, and you provide the customers with the ability to select a few related books and compare them before they can buy now. Make that “compare button/link the same style as you would the “buy now?button/link on a page in which the “buy now?button exists. This will help herd customers through your sales funnel.

10. Clearly Define your return policy.

11. Make sure to include an “About Us?section on your site. The majority of my customers will visit or look for that section before making a purchase.

12. Make your site load fast, easy to navigate and user friendly. No need for horizontal scrolling, excessive vertical scrolling, large animation files or intrusive pop-up windows.

13. Keep your “buy now?button consistently and prominently placed on all product pages. The closer to the top of the page…the better. “Above the fold if you want it sold?& 2. “Eye level is buy level?

14. Provide clear good quality images of your products with an “enlarge image” option.

15. Make your checkout process as usable, intuitive, reassuring and simple as possible. Losing a shopper during your checkout process is a CRITICAL loss.

16. Don’t make people type their e-mail address twice. Get the site to remember and do it automatically.

17. Don’t force people to install crazy plug-ins just to make a purchase from your site. Stick with JavaScript, Flash and the other breads & butters.

18. Read your copy, make sure its compelling, yet not exaggerated and too loud.

19. Identify your unique selling proposition and exploit it. If you are the only seller of medium-sized green widgets in the UK, clearly state that and be proud of it.

20. Implement a “site search?box and make sure it is accurate. Not only it will allow users to find what they want quick, it will give you an insight as to what they are shopping for and what terminology(keywords/key phrases) they are using so you can tailor your copy (and ad campaigns) accordingly.

21. Don’t just focus on the many features of your product, but rather on the benefits those features will provide you customers with. Don’t just say “folding ladders? say “Our folding ladders will save you valuable garage space?

22. Display your prices, shipping charges and tax clearly BEFORE the checkout process is completed.

23. Don’t use a drop-down for the “country” or “state?list over your order form. Many people are using scrolling mice these days, many are sure to accidentally scroll off of their correct state.

24. Let customers copy their shipping info to their billing info if they are identical, with one click.

25. Remove distractions as much as possible from the final checkout process such as the main navigation that existed during the shopping portion of your site.

26. Clearly provide a checkout process indicator. If your checkout process has 3 steps, clearly indicate at the top of the page what step they are on and how many steps there are to complete the order.

27. Clearly identify what info you really require during your checkout process. Eliminate unnecessary text fields/questions.

28. Use easy to understand, friendly error messages. No “INCORRECT USER INPUT IN STATE FIELD!?messages.

29. If your checkout error messages occur on a page other than the page with the errors, preserve the information that the user has already input and get the site to input it automatically.

30. Double check the spelling on your site. And the spelling on your error messages. “Ers in input filed” would look very unprofessional.

31. Try and get good reviews from shopping authority sites (,,, etc) and from previous shoppers.

32. Don’t use complex formulas for shipping price calculations, Example – ‘if you buy 13.5 kilograms worth of x”, then multiply that weight by y shipping rate. Get the site to do the calculations and show the shopper the price.

33. Consider shipping the product free. This is often a very good selling point with online shoppers.

34. Display the stock status of the selected item and do so BEFORE the user puts the item in their cart.

35. If you don’t sell or run out/discontinued an item, remove it from the site.

36. If you are offering a lot of products, users should be able to sort them by important criteria…price, size, color, etc.

37. Provide an easy way for shoppers to compare details of similar products.

38. Use a custom 404 not found page to link people back to the important areas of your site

39. Give a clear estimate of the delivery time.

40. Accept a wide variety of payment options and clearly display those options.

41. Important information should not look like ad banners. There really is such a thing as “ad blindness?and people will automatically skip over this important information.

42. Make sure you have a “first-time visitor?page. This is where you are going to explain why and how you are different from your competitors.

43. Update your copyright statements on page footers. Make sure that the current year is displayed….fix that 2003 copyright statement.

44. Let customer make a purchase without having to register with your site.

45. Consider making every link the last part of the statement “I want to…? Don’t just have a link that says “the privacy policy? but rather “read the privacy policy? Do you get it… the shopper wants to “Read the Privacy Policy?

46. Don’t use too clever names for your shopping cart like “widget basket?or “widget box? Call it “My shopping cart” or “My shopping basket”.

47. Don’t make the shopper specify select an option when there is only 1 “option? If the product only comes in red, don’t make the shopper select the “red?radio button or choose “red?from the drop down. Get the site to do it automatically.

48. Provide clear shopping instructions in an empty shopping cart. Don’t just say “your shopping cart is empty?

49. Provide a “special sale?or “special clearance?section. This will attract the budget-conscious shoppers.

50. The most important golden rule…you must portray a lot of trust and credibility to instil shopper confidence and get them to make a purchase. Make sure you do.

The Two Most Important Factors In eCommerce Design.

By , December 24, 2018 1:31 am


If you want to increase the sales from your online shopping cart software one of the way you can do it is by focusing on two major aspects of it’s design. It’s uability and persusaiveness. This articles looks at both of these aspects and gives you some pointers on how to improve them.

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OK, so the title isn’t strictly true there is one important factor in ecommerce shopping cart design and two things you have to do achieve it. The goal is to make people purchase your product. The two things you have to do to make them buy is to help and persuade.

When you design a site you need to pay serious attention to it’s usability and it’s persuasive abilities. The aim of a good eCommerce solutions is to gently (or not so gently) persuade the sites user to purchase the product they want to make sure that they find this as easy as possible you need to make sure that your website is as usable as possible. There are thousands of usability and persuasive design methodologies and we don’t intend to cover them all in this article. We have identified a couple of the most important factors in both areas and given you some tips and guidance to help you tailor your shopping cart software to increase sales.

Usability Design

When a customer lands on your internet store they will only have a certain amount of patience, once this all runs out they will give up and leave your site for one of your competitors. The easier your site is to use and the less they have to think about how it works the longer they will stay on your site, and the more likely they will be to purchase from you.

With the increase in the use of CSS and the increasing accessibility of graphic manipulation packages people are able to completely customise the way the ‘things you click?on their web-site look, the limit it pretty much their own imagination. Unfortunately this can lead to some confusion for users who have to think about what is clickable and what isn’t, this will cause them to get frustrated.

With text links it’s best to follow HTML tradition, keeping links in a contrasting colours and keep them underlined. Users also like to know where they have been, so keeping links that have been visited in another colour is good practice.

The best course of actions with buttons is to ?well?make them look like buttons. I know it seems patronising but a lot of people forget this when they’ve spent a lot of time making sure the buttons on their site fit in with the design. Raised looking buttons are difficult to make look nice and clean without them looking a little ?001′ but it’s really worth spending a little time thinking about your buttons.

One of the easiest way to lose customers is to actually lose them. If you customers can’t find their way around your store, or can’t find their way to wherever they want to be they’re not going to buy from you.

What’s the best way to achieve this? Well it’s probably by using tabs. they give a good idea of where the user is, and how they can get to where they want to be.

Tag Lines are frequently dismissed from modern website design in order to make at design look less cluttered, and certainly there are situation where removing a tag line will do no harm but generally there are useful. It is important that a customer know as quickly as possible if your site will sell the product they are looking for. A good example of this is Amazon when they first launched they used a tag-line similar to ‘Online Bookstore?because when customer landed on their page they would have had to think a little to work out that a company called Amazon was in fact an online book store. However as Amazon are now so well known they have removed it as it’s no longer needed.

Persuasive Design

Once you’ve addressed the Usability of your store and your visitors can find their way around your site easily and find their way to where they want to be, you must then consider the second important part of the design. You need to make then go to where YOU want them too, the order confirmation page. Below are 3 tips for making this happen.

Once the user has put some items into their cart and clicked on the checkout button there is a good chance that they really want to buy something. So whatever you do make it as easy as possible for them to put their credit card details in and click the order confirm button.

A design practice that we implement is removing all unnecessary links from the order process. For example all links to the ‘home?and search boxes are removed. If the user goes searching for other products then it’s possible that they’ll get side tracked and forget that they were going to buy your products. But make sure that the user still has access to the information about the product that they’re buying, we try to implement this by including all the information on the shopping cart page, or by linking to pop-up with the info in, we don’t link back to the original product page as this could lead to further distractions.

Long checkout processes with multiple pages is also something that should be avoided. Only ask the customer for information that you really need.

One of the main ways that people will look for products on your site is by using the search box. Rigging (or Mapping) your searches will allows you to map products to keyword, so when a customer searches for a word related to a product that does not include the keywords in the title or the product text you can make sure the products show up. This is just like a customer asking a shop assistance for a product when they know what they want the product to do, but are just not sure of the name of the product.

You need to make your product descriptions and products images as descriptive as possible, don’t ever assume that your customers are as well versed on your products as you are. If there is something they want to know and you haven’t covered they will do one of three things:

? Ask you, which happens a lot less than you would imagine.
? Go and look on a competitors web-site, if they have the information then it’s likely you’ve lost a customer.
? Give Up.

Also the more information that you include the more ‘spider food?there is got the search engines, writing the product descriptions is a good time to focus on Search Engine Optimisation.

Following a couple of these simple guidelines you should see a marked increase in the conversion rate for your store. There are also many other usability and persuasive design models that you can apply and we defiantly recommend searching for some more to apply to your shopping cart.

What is MP4?

By , December 20, 2018 1:08 am


Similar to how MP3 files work by compressing audio files without affecting the audio’s quality, MP4 works the same way, but with video files and with added complexity.


Similar to how MP3 files work by compressing audio files without affecting the audio’s quality, MP4 works the same way, but with video files and with added complexity. The large video files of both motion and audio is compressed into a single and simple file. MP4 is commonly known as MPEG-4 AVC (Advanced Video Coding). This new technology have hopes to decrease the size of the video, which in turns minimizes the risk of running out of space with older computers, making it easier to work with for the users.

Like stated before, the MP4 files are compressed into very small files into an extent that quality is not affected in any way. How the MP4 files manage to retain its quality is by dealing with specific coding situations, reducing certain aspects (such as temporal and spatial redundancies), transforming and changing the motion and intra estimation into the frequency domain, and inputting codec.

The MP4 players work in a simple manner as well. Attach the device into the computer, notebook, or TV and start the desired video. The advantage of the MP4 technology is that the video files are played in DVD quality at less than 1 Mbps (through a broadband connection). With a MP4 player, one can take videos through an Internet connection and watch them immediately in perfect quality. Lower MP versions can be played in the player, such as audio MP3 files.

Disadvantages, though not many, exist through the realms of MP4 technology. Piracy concerns in the MP3s still continue with MP4. Licensing and piracy problems continue and become even greater as long as MP4 gains its popularity. Despite the small size of a MP4 file, it still takes a while to download the file in a broadband connection. In a nut shell, the file is generally still large, even if it is compressed.

The future of ecommerce store development!

By , December 16, 2018 12:09 am


No longer do small businesses need to pay thousands of dollars to have an online store developed for them. In fact, with a small skill set, you can implement your own online store in just one day. Here’s how.

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As a long time web designer I’ve dealt with any number of eCommerce options over the years. In general you’ve always had two major options:

1) You build and code from scratch. This required a great deal of knowledge in various coding languages in addition to the ability to design an attractive interface which will work within the construct of the website’s structure.

2) You pay a company with pre-built systems. This was not only extremely expensive but rarely allowed you freedom to create any sort of pleasing design as it would have to conform to their limited header/footer customization.

Well, I’ve seen the light now! The future is here and (unfortunately for people in “the business” like me) it’s unbelievably easy to do.

These free solutions are Open Source based online shop e-commerce solutions that are available under the GNU General Public License. They all contain a rich set of out-of-the-box online shopping cart functionalities that allows store owners to setup, run, and maintain their online stores with minimum effort and with no costs, fees, or limitations involved. Most of these Open Source solutions provide an e-commerce platform, which include the powerful PHP web scripting language and the fast MySQL database server. With no special requirements, they are able to run on any PHP 4.1+ enabled web server running on Linux, Solaris, BSD, Mac OS X, and Microsoft Windows environments.

Unbelievable right? Well,, it’s true and I’m loving it.

In addition to the obvious advantages of these open source stores, there are many less obvious benefits such as.

– Active user forums where you can get answers to most any question without dealing with charges or “canned responses” from a profit company.

– The ability to change the design of your store nearly instantly by simply selecting a new “template” from within your administration panel

– Countless free “add-ons” and “modules” which add all types of additional features to your store.

– As the projects continue to grow and the stores improve you can upgrade, and of course the upgrades are free also.

In my opinion once of the greatest of the above features is the ability to change the design and/or appearance of your site with the ease of a few uploads and button clicks (ONCE YOU HAVE A DESIGN DEVELOPED). The most common complaint I found from OS users was the same one I’ve heard about other e-commerce packages. People weren’t aware of how much work would be involved in getting an original design put together. They would get to a certain point, hit an unexpected bottleneck, and be unable to keep going. The majority of the work involved in getting your store up and running was getting a design to function within the limits and restrictions of the store’s code. Every implementation will run into these problems, and everything takes longer and costs more than you plan for it, whether it’s proprietary or open source. There are now; however, easy solutions for this issue which will prevent you from getting overwhelmed. Many businesses on the web (example: & ) who focus on web template development have entered a whole new era in template design. They have begun development of stunning designs for Open Source eCommerce solutions such as OScommerce, ZenCart, and CRE Loaded (the most popular of these Open Source eCommerce solutions). This allows you to easily implement a perfect store design within minutes. While these design templates are not free like the eCommerce solution, they are worth the mere $50 average price, saving you weeks of frustrating design.

You can find more information on these Open Source eCommerce Solutions at their hub sites. Just type in the OS solution name you wish to research into your search engine and their home pages will show up. The most popular solutions are ZenCart, OScommerce & CRE Loaded. But there are many other ones out there to choose from; however these three have proven themselves over time and have such large user bases and support groups that I would recommend trying one of them first before attempting to delve into lesser known solutions.

To sum this all up. While large companies will always need a custom built solution for their online stores, the average small business no longer needs to spend five or ten thousand dollars to have a quality store developed. The use of a free OS solution along with an inexpensive design template will have you selling online for pennies on the dollar compared with a custom built store. Even if you don’t feel you have the skill set to work with the OS solutions, you can hire any competent developer to implement it for you. Sure you’ll be charged, but the price will be a small percentage of what you would have paid.

Online Turnkey Sites ?Good and Bad

By , December 11, 2018 10:30 pm


You have decided to open a site online, but are not sure where to start. This brings us to the subject of the online turnkey sites.

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You have decided to open a site online, but are not sure where to start. This brings us to the subject of the online turnkey sites.

Online Turnkey Sites ?Good and Bad

An online turnkey site comes in a couple of variations. All of them are designed to give you a base to work off for your ecommerce efforts. The idea is to create the fundamentals of a site and then let you go to town with it. Depending on the platform, using one of these platforms can be a good or bad move.

Let me save you a ton of money from the outset. If you are considering an online turnkey site that is fully contained, to wit, it gives you a site, domain and products to sell, you are going to have a very difficult time making money. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, your site is no different than all the other turnkey sites sold by the same company. Why would prospects come to your site instead of any of the others? Simply put, there is no way to make your site standout. Further, your marketing will be a major pain. Many pay-per-click search engines will not let you list the site because they only allow one listing per affiliate program and they will consider a turnkey site as one. Further, you will have difficulties pursuing any search engine rankings because you will have little ability to change the site. I strongly encourage you to avoid these online turnkey sites like the plague.

There are online site builders that work fine. These services essentially give you the ability to control the design of your site, and require you to have a domain as well as your own products and services. On the high end, you can find massively flexible page builders with databases tied in covering everything from customer service management to inventory tracking. Most can also be customized to your particular needs.

This second set of platforms, known as online site builders, are really the way to go. The days of learning and hammering out html code for pages has gone the way of the horse and buggy. The online site builders give you convenience, flexibility and control over your online venture. This allows you to manipulate the site as you gain a better understanding of your market and all things Internet. Minor elements of html coding are still needed, but nothing that will set you back or be confusing.

An online turnkey site sounds like a great thing at first blush, but it can cost you in the long run. Make sure you understand what you can and cannot do before committing to a system.

The Next Google, eBay and PayPal All Rolled Into One – DXinOne

By , December 7, 2018 10:08 pm


Ever wonder who the next Google, eBay or PayPal is going to be? Want to “get in on the ground floor” like the early employees of these companies who got cheap stock options and were able to cash them in later for big payoffs? This article will guide you toward just such an opportunity — one that anyone can take advantage of with a modest investment of time and money.

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Ever wonder who the next Google, eBay or PayPal is going to be? Want to “get in on the ground floor” like the early employees of these companies who got cheap stock options and were able to cash them in later for big payoffs? This article will guide you toward just such an opportunity — one that anyone can take advantage of with a modest investment of time and money.

Google. eBay. PayPal. These are currently the biggest names on the Internet (not counting MicroSoft). But rewind just 7-10 years back to the late 1990’s. Who were the biggest names on the Internet then? Yahoo. AltaVista. Netscape. And America Online (AOL).

Do you see where I’m going with this? Things change. Markets change. Original ideas rise to the fore, and better mousetraps do get invented every once in awhile. From time to time, an original idea will succeed in its original form until someone buys it up and runs it into the ground. Or, perhaps, a competitor copycats the idea and doesn’t necessarily build it better, but rather has a better marketing department and/or more money behind them (Microsoft vs. Apple).

Sometimes, a startup (PayPal) will be wildly successful and then be bought out and be even more successful with the backing of the new buyer (eBay). And sometimes, competition ends up being healthy, with multiple vendors offering similar products and services. The main point is this: competitive forces are constantly driving and changing the marketplace.

One thing that Google, eBay and PayPal have all proven in recent years is that “better mousetraps” can benefit from meteoric rises to the top of the charts/markets/collective-consciousness. If you think about it, it really was not all that long ago that none of these companies even existed. But yet today, nearly every Internet user on this planet knows who these 3 companies are AND HOW TO GET TO THEIR WEBSITES – and that literally means BILLIONS of people.

So what does this have to do with DXinOne? Here’s what I know: DXinOne has been working for more than 5 years to create similar services to each of these three giants. I could also throw in names such as Travelocity,, and CraigsList as “names” that correlate to service-lines that DXinOne is working on and/or already has in place.

adsXposed is a lot like Google’s AdSense and AdWords programs. With Google, publishers use AdSense to add advertising streams to their websites, while advertisers use AdWords to place the ads that run on that network and on Google’s search network. In DXinOne, there is also an added wrinkle which I will cover separately in it’s own article — an affiliate program that enables you to earn commissions on advertising purchases.

DXinOne is currently working on releasing DXFinder, DXClassifieds, DXConcierge, DXTraveller and DXTravelAgent, just to name a few of their upcoming service lines.

DXFinder is a full-fledged search engine. Google rapidly rose to dominance by simply inventing a better search engine than anyone else had or has been able to come up with since. Will DXFinder be a superior search engine to Google? Only time will tell, but they are serious about entering the market and it certainly should help amplify the inherent value and market- acceptance of adsXposed as well as all of the other DXServices.

DXAuctions is also forthcoming. This will compete directly with eBay. This would seem to be an even more daunting task than competing with Google, but wait: eBay has owned PayPal for several years now, and they have still yet to “get on the ball” and implement something that DXAuctions will have in place from Day One – actually it’s already “in place” within the DXSystem and has been for several years — built-in escrow payment capabilities. DXDirects will help eliminate a lot of the fraud that pervades so many innocent people’s eBay shopping experiences.

And as a “payment processor”, DXinOne is going to be playing in a league in which it has no peers. DXAccounts are so much more secure than PayPal accounts. PayPal transactions are subject to charge-backs and highly susceptible to fraud. DXinOne requires users to provide extensive identification and place of residence/business documentation in order to earn a high rating and have access to all the features of the DXSystem. At PayPal, a fraudster can sign up for an account and within 5 minutes be using a stolen credit card to commit fraudulent transactions. That just does not and will not happen with DXinOne because they have specifically taken the time to “get it right”. They’ve been in development for 5+ years. These are not just some ideas that have been thrown against the wall to see what sticks. They have studied the competition and evolved their offerings into “better mousetraps”.

If you’d like to read more about the e-currency exchange opportunities available through DXinOne, please visit our website where we’ve published some articles in the past several months that will give you some more background information on this “big picture” concept: we are in the right place at the right time. With DXinOne, we are “early birds”, much like the early employees of Google with their stock options – it’s structured quite a bit differently, quite a bit better actually – but the basic principle is the same.

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Web Site Analysis 101

By , December 3, 2018 8:29 pm


Eliminate guesswork and measure success ?that is what analysing your website visitors’ behaviour [or web analytics] is all about. Understanding where they came from, where they land and what people are doing on your site.

Virtually all web-hosting services provide rudimentary analytics that can help you begin to understand what users are doing on your site. But most hosting services just don’t provide more sophisticated tools. Tools such as funnel reports, which show how …

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Eliminate guesswork and measure success ?that is what analysing your website visitors’ behaviour [or web analytics] is all about. Understanding where they came from, where they land and what people are doing on your site.

Virtually all web-hosting services provide rudimentary analytics that can help you begin to understand what users are doing on your site. But most hosting services just don’t provide more sophisticated tools. Tools such as funnel reports, which show how visitors are progressing through the various stages or levels of your site ?hopefully to become a lead / conversion / sale or navigation reports which give you visitor activity such as entry points; where they clicked; where they came from; where they went; how much time they spent on a page and their exit points. Then there are tools such as segmentation reports which track the behaviour of specific groups of visitors such as purchasers, those who came from Google etc. and robot reports which monitor when search engine spiders index your site

There are free packages you can use from ClickTracks or Google but you must apply to Google and it can take weeks for them to set you up whereas ClickTracks Appetizer is free, immediate and includes several of ClickTracks’ most popular features like overlay view, path view, page analysis and basic visitor labeling.

But once you have a web analytics tool what do you do with it? To many people statistics can be daunting and interpreting what they mean can be painful; but hey, no pain, no gain.

The first thing you need to understand is some basic terms:

Hit: a request for a file from your web server noted in the log.

Page view: a request for a file whose type is defined as a page in log analysis or an occurrence of the page tagging script being run in page tagging. In log analysis, a single page view may generate multiple hits as all the resources required to view the page (images, .js and .css files) are also requested from your web server.

Visitor session: a series of requests from the same unique visitor with in a single visit. A visit is expected to contain multiple hits (in log analysis) and page views.

Unique visitor: the uniquely identified client generating requests on your web server (log analysis) or viewing pages (page tagging). A unique visitor can, of course, make many visits.

Repeat visitor: a visitor that has made at least one previous visit.

New visitor: a visitor that has not made any previous visits.

Referring search terms: the search phrases people are using to find your site.

Referring URLs: tell you which web sites are sending you traffic.

Content popularity: the list of most popular pages on your site.

Site overlay: displays your actual pages with a click level indicator next to each link showing the number of people who click on each link.

Bounce rate: reveals the number of visitors who left the site from a particular page.

OK most of those are obvious but they are still worth laying out. In future articles I’ll expand on some of these terms and on the whole subject.

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