Web Services → Tools and Utilities → Web Traffic Reports

Understanding Your Web Site’s Traffic Report

Purpose

Web traffic reports enable school or office webmasters to use data to analyze how visitors use their web sites. The terms “web analytics” or “web metrics” are often used to refer to the data in the reports. The reports are a diagnostic tool that enable webmasters to make planful changes to their site’s content to better serve their site visitors.

About Google Analytics

Web Services uses Google Analytics to measure traffic on the MCPS web. All school and office sites in the Tron Web Publishing System include Google Analytics. School and office sites not in Tron should contact Web Services for directions on how to add the appropriate code to their web sites.  

How does Google Analytics work?

Each page on your web site has a bit of code that reports back to Google. Google aggregates this data and generates a monthly report. The school or office webmaster receives an email with a PDF of the report attached. The email will look something like this:

  • The From field will say: mcpswebmaster@gmail.com 
  • The Subject field will say: Analytics <insert the name of your site here> <insert date>
  • Note the PDF attachment.

What should I do with the report?

Sample Web Traffic Report 

It’s best to open the email as soon as you receive it, then save the PDF of the report to a Web Traffic Reports folder on your computer. Web Services does not receive these individual reports, so if you don’t copy the attachment to your computer before your email is deleted, you have lost the report. We do not have backups.

What does the report tell me?

The report lists the most popular pages visitors viewed on your web site during a particular time period. It can reveal what are your most or least effective pages, and it can indicate how popular each page is on your site. The report will include the following terms and data:

  • Pageview: Total web pages viewed by all visitors
  • Unique Pageviews: Number of different pages viewed by visitors
  • Time on Page: Average time a visitor spent on the page or site
  • Bounce Rate: Percentage of visitors who viewed one web page and then left the site
  • % Exit: Percentage of visitors who exited the site from the page being viewed

How can I interpret the numbers? 

High Bounce Rate: This can indicate that a page might not be effective – or it can indicate that a page is VERY effective. It may signify that visitors are coming to the page, not finding anything of interest, and then leaving the site. However, a high bounce rate might be perfectly acceptable if the page is linking to an external application, such as ePaystub or FMS, or if the content the visitor is looking for is right there on the page – quick and easy to find!

High Time on Page: This can indicate content that is particularly useful/interesting to visitors so they spent time using the information on the page. Or it can mean there was so much content on the page that they had a hard time finding what they were looking for. 

Pageviews: Pageviews differ from unique pageviews in that pageviews are the total of all web pages viewed.  If a visitor reloads their web browser after reaching the web page, this will be counted as an additional pageview. If a user navigates to a different page and then returns to the original page, a second pageview will be recorded as well.

Unique Pageviews: The unique pageviews represent a total of different pages viewed by visitors. A unique pageview represents the number of sessions during which that page was viewed one or more times.

How can this report help me improve my web site?

Watch trends in your reports and be ready to make changes on your site in response to these trends.

 

Issue

Action

Web pages with out-of-date content show up in your report

Update the content or delete the page

Web pages appear very low in the rankings.

Change the links on your site home page to make the information easier to find if you want to improve the particular page's ranking; however no action may be necessary.

Web pages have a very low Time on Page amount.

Web pages have a high Bounce Rate.

Review and possibly rewrite and restructure the content on your page.

Is the information clearly written and easy to read? Are the links to this page descriptive of the content there?