How can a novice reader learn how to study Web analytics?

Source: Internet
Author: User
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Hello, Sidney,

Very much like your blog, introduce information and share experience, but also gave me the confidence to continue to work hard! Based on what you said in your blog, "WA is not sure to understand the mathematical statistics and web programming, I would say-better understand some." I have a problem that has plagued me for a long time and is here to consult you. In the Internet industry in fact, many people have not studied computer science, for example, I was learning English: (I am a marketing work of the new industry, work, will inevitably be often with the web side of the code contact, which makes me very distressed. At the same time, do data monitoring and analysis, and will be exposed to some data statistical analysis of things, such as modeling, completely without concept. Always hear people say, want to walk tech and marketing combination of dour path, oneself also feel should learn some related skills and knowledge, but do not know what to learn, where to start learning. I wonder if you could offer some advice on your own experience? or a blog post to tell?: Thank you very much!



In fact, always have a friend asked me: I am a novice, I like the site analysis, but I have no experience, I must have what kind of foundation, and how to start learning?

Before I answer this question, I would like to ask the following question: What is the most important thing about web analytics?

What is the most important thing about web analytics?

On this issue, Avinash on this issue has opened a special article discussion, I and his feelings are exactly the same. In fact, this question can also be changed to: "What is the most important of all analytical activities?" The obvious answer is human. You can say that technology is important, tools are important, data is important, models are important, experience is important ... However, all of this requires a smart mind to organize, and then use the right tools to get the necessary data and use the appropriate model to analyze the data to get the so-called insight (opinion or opinion). Tools, data, and models are not the only way to give you insight, they are less likely to give you recommendation (advice) directly. Don't tell me what business FDI (Business Intelligence) system can do, or tell me that an advanced model can discern everything-these are bullshit, and no one's brain directs them, they worthless. Did you see the "Minority Report"? When the truth of the movie was about to be announced, it dawned on everyone that Ox X was not a computer, but a gifted person's brain. Similarly, website analysis and even all analysis is really the case.

So, if you are new, heart timid, feel that they do not understand the technology, do not understand the tools, do not understand the data, do not understand the model, do not understand ..., I would say, completely do not understand these certainly not, but these are not problems, these can be quickly learned. The real problem is the desire to explore the unknown as Sherlock Holmes, the sensitive sense of smell used in the inquiry, the meticulous thinking and the life experience stored in his mind. It is like a painter who does not give him a photoshop,illustrator, and does not give him an oil pen. He can still use chalk to make good works with the help of passion, but if you don't have the gift of art or the exercise of artistic creation, it is impossible to give you the best brush paint and the software to make the shocking things--wa exactly the same.

So, you should ask yourself, do you have the desire to know the unknown? Do you have a keen sense of smell for fresh and unusual things? Do you have a more careful logical thinking (neither unrestrained without boundaries, and will not be bound by a phenomenon to die in a dead end, but bold assumption of careful verification)? Well, Do you have enough life and work to make you feel full of analysis?

If so, please keep looking at the following, which will be more detailed to explore the knowledge and skills you should possess. However, if you feel that some of the above areas are not your forte, then it doesn't matter, you can consciously train and train-no one is born Sherlock Holmes, but everyone has the opportunity and may be trained as a good detective. By that time you'll see what's behind this article and it might be more rewarding.

Now, my detective friends, loosen the collar of your dogs and let them run on the path of finding the truth!

1. You need to know about the internet

Site analysis of the object is the site, so you need to understand the Internet. Understanding the Internet has two aspects, one aspect is technical, one aspect is commercial.

Technically, you have to understand what the Internet is, how it works, and what it does. For example, how can it achieve a computer and another computer can chat QQ, and how can you input can see my blog? In addition, why you can download the film, but also to upload photos. In other words, you have to understand the Internet information storage and transmission mechanism. And as you learn how the Internet is delivering information, you'll learn something more nuanced, such as what an HTTP protocol is, what a URL is, what server and client end is, what a browser is, and so on. If you go deep into what the technical reasons behind the "broiler" and "Storm audio" events are, and how they relate to storm audio, congratulations--you graduated from the Internet general knowledge class.


These techniques should not be called technology, but should be called common sense. People who know common sense are just as aware of the fact that it is because of gravity that the apple is going underground instead of flying to the sky, but there is no need to explore the causes of gravitation. Learning WA is also true. For example, you just have to know what JPG format is, or you can further point to the JPG and flash differences, but the compression algorithm on JPG is unnecessary to understand. Or, you need to know what a cookie is and what it does, but how to generate and control cookies using the program, you don't have to know at all now. In a word-everything to understand a little, out of the unknown noun should be clear, but as to whether to get into, that is a matter of opinion.

Commercially, you need to understand the business model on the Internet. If the word SNS, if you want to think half a day, then you are extremely do not understand the Internet, this is not. To know the internet on several of the most basic profit model (happy net depends on what makes money, Alibaba how to make money, QQ is how to make money?—— to in-depth understanding), to know PPC and SEM, to know that E-commerce has B2B,B2C and Consumer-to-consumer, to know that there is a website alliance, Also know that there are many false or even fraud on the internet ... You don't have to create an Internet business model, but you need to understand these endless things. Also, it is best to know a few internet celebrities and their views, such as the previous period of hot Ma Yun and the recent hot Cheng ... These things may not directly help you improve the skills of web analytics, but they are an important accumulation of knowledge that allows you to truly analyze less detours. In addition, understanding the Internet business model is another important point is that the Web analytics is for business services, understanding the business model in order to let you really from the perspective of business, rather than Marvell perspective to analyze. I often say to my colleagues that to be an expert on web analytics, first you must be an expert in online marketing.

2. You need to know some basic concepts of web technology

Again, the site analysis of the object is the site, the specific is a Web page, so you have to understand some of the basic concepts of web technology, do not need too complex web technology.

First, you need to know some of the most basic concepts and elements of HTML. Related knowledge Baidu (dare not recommend Google China, but also by the news broadcast named) will have a lot of content. The topics recommended here for Silicon Valley dynamics are brief. If you know more about HTML, you may wish to know more about xml,asp and PHP. But not necessarily.

Then, it's best to know the basics of some scripting languages, such as JavaScript. This foundation can help you to understand the design of some page elements so that the monitoring code can be implemented correctly. In the long term, for those who are interested in further in-depth study of the website analysis, they can manually modify the code to achieve a number of customized web site monitoring is wonderful. Not only that, if one day you get into the monitoring area of internet advertising, knowing that scripting languages can help you add code (ACTIONSCRIPT) to your advertising materials. Scripting languages (and even object-oriented languages) are similar, knowing one another is almost the same. Of course, if you are leading a team of web analytics, your team must have a colleague who is proficient in web programming techniques.

Finally, you need to know some of the ways in which information is stored and transmitted, such as Cookie,cache, that are generated by the HTTP protocol to help more efficient transmission of web page information. The reason for understanding them is that they may have a significant impact on the monitoring of web analytics.

3. You need to use some of the most basic tools

Analyze Web site Analysis of course to use web analytics tools. So you have to know at least Google Analytics, or better know omniture,webtrends. Besides knowing, you'd better be able to use one of them. I suggest beginners start with Google Analytics, free tools, simple implementation, and simple interface, very suitable for entry-level users.

Web Analytics is the work of dealing with data, so you need to have tools to handle data. Speaking of this, friends will ask me, web analytics need to use some advanced data analysis tools, such as SPSS or SAS? The answer depends on which way you do the Web analytics. If you analyze Web log files directly and do not use log analysis tools such as WebTrends, then there is no doubt that you need a powerful data analysis tool and an advanced computer. And if you are using the method of adding the monitoring code to get the site analysis data, then I think the use of SPSS and SAS is not much, because the bottom of a large number of basic data processing has been done by these tools. Also, please note that SPSS or SAS do not specifically define the model for Web site log data, you need to build it yourself, and the Web analytics tool outputs the analysis results directly from the built-in data model. So, I think, SPSS and SAS and other advanced data software is not WA essential tools.

So, what is it? Of course it's our great Excel. I recommend using the new Excel2007 version, and its new features are useful for web analytics. In addition, site analysis requires a large number of output charts to help customers understand, so Excel is the most appropriate tool. In addition to Excel, if you are faced with a customer to do presentation, then proficiency in PowerPoint is essential.

In addition to Excel and PowerPoint, I suggest you use another tool: HttpWatch. This tool is not free, but in China this is not a problem, you can go to the official website to download a, and then in our great Baidu to find a low speed crack method. This tool functions as its name, which is used to get all the packet information in the process of Web page information delivery. We use it to check that the site monitoring code is added correctly.

4. You need to learn the basic concept and definition of WA

Well. This is needless to say. You want to know what is visit, what is PV, what is bounce rate, what is time on site ... Want to know these, can read English Avinash blog, specific content scattered in his blog many articles (you can directly click on his blog site map, but his site map update is slow, the new article may not be included). If you want to know some international general WA concepts and definitions, you can go to WAA (WA Federation, Web Analytics Association) This civil society organization to see, IAB (Interactive Advertising Association) also has related content. Of course, it is very important to read more, Avinash some of his recommended blog, I think all good, which also has my blog (laughed), we do not just pick a few reading, there will be harvest.

English is not good, you can read my blog, the content is very informative (boast), and I will often translate some good articles of foreign peers.

Are there any good books to recommend? Avinash's "Web Analytics one Hour a day" is a few (and I know only) translated Chinese books. So I suggest you look for some English books on the internet, compare Google Analytics short cut (thanks to Kurt's recommendation), and Web Analtyics Dumb book. Secretly tell you, in the electric Donkey search related resources is a good way, but please spend money to support the genuine Oh!

5. You need to have business awareness (Business Sense)

The most important thing is always to say the last. In my other articles has repeatedly stressed that the site analysis is not an end, but to serve the means of business activities. Therefore, the premise of web analytics is that you need to have a sense of business. Your data is not just describing the site itself, it is describing the business behavior that the site represents. If your analysis is not governed by a clear business goal, your analysis is ultimately meaningless, or at least at a discount. I do a lot of similar worthless web analytics, and I know exactly how important a clear business objective is for web analytics. You may tell me that your website is not a website for business activities. I would say that the Web site can not serve the business, but the business of your site needs to be commercial standards and means to do. In other words, although your site may not have a business goal, but its existence will not have no purpose, understand this purpose and better achieve this goal, of course, it needs business sense.

Another aspect of business awareness is that you need to be in direct contact with your business and your colleagues in the marketing department. Do not think that web analytics is a stuffy in the jar (silo) in the work, no business colleagues for business related information input, you can not have a comprehensive business understanding, you can not apply these understanding to your site analysis process. The result may be that your analysis is correct, but it is the right nonsense. Business departments are both your client and your helper, you need to understand their work and listen to their needs, and then grab their "spiritual wealth."

Well, say these, you will find in fact, the threshold of web analytics is not so high. Believe me in the front of this article, tools, models and even technology is not the decision to determine the site analysis of the fundamental, the most fundamental or is your mind. Do you have a keen sense of business? Do you have rigorous logical analysis skills? Can you abstract the core problem from the phenomenon? Will you be able to prioritize and avoid the niu of energy on some pointless issues? Are you able to have both macroscopic thinking and structured analytical excavations at the micro level? and whether you can present your insights and conclusions with the best stories and the FA?—— these to really determine the difference. These are also distinctions between a Web analytics enthusiast and a website analyst practitioner.

Finally, give me a reply with the Hai that gave me the question: "

When you see a good film, you know that the Director, in addition to artistic genius, also has excellent technical skills, such as plot construction, scene design, editing technology, lighting effects, but the most important thing is his artistic talent;

To see an excellent football player's superb performance, to know that he in addition to a keen sense of smell and awareness, but also has a difficult exercise process, superb skills, but the most important thing is his sense of smell and consciousness;

To see an excellent literary work, to know that this writer, in addition to the deep and moving philosophy, but also has a profound strokes, such as the style of character expression, the organization of the story structure, but the most important thing is his speculation. ”

You think I'm right? Do you have any questions you'd like to ask? Leave me a message!

[Copyright belongs to author Sidney Song All, welcome reprint, but please inform the author in advance and indicate the origin]

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