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Web analytics an hour a day

If any of you don’t read Avinash Kaushik’s blog, Occam’s Razor, add it to your RSS reader now. But I have an even better idea for you—buy his book, Web Analytics an Hour a Day. Longtime readers know what a nut I am about having metrics drive everything you do, but many people don’t know where to start. Avinash tells you where to start, where to finish, and everything in between.


I have to tell you that, while I like reading Avinash’s blog, I knew that his book was for a more general audience, so I didn’t expect to learn a whole lot. I thought that I’d be reviewing it mostly to recommend it to my readers, but I found a number of nuggets that were new to me.
The biggest thing that became clear to me is that I have given short shrift to qualitative analytics. I am a big fan of quantitative analysis, and I refer to it often, but Avinash is very persuasive about getting to the “why” behind the numbers. So, it’s not enough to know what customers did if you don’t know why. I think I’ve glossed over that a bit and maybe that’s been a mistake. I’ve always said that if you keep tweaking your site and looking at what customers do (quantitative) then you’ll eventually lurch into the right answer without ever knowing why. Avainsh is showing me that there are simple survey-based approaches and other approaches that give you more information on which to base your site changes, getting you to the right answer faster.
Avinash does his usual stellar job on demystifying Web metrics, championing less-popular but very effective measurements such as bounce rate, while helping folks to see why we should pay less attention to some popular metrics. A lot of my writing is directed at marketers so that they understand why it’s important to take the direct marketing approach when on the Web. Avinash takes things one level deeper so that your analysts can stop sending you reports and start answering your business questions.
If you’re serious about data-driven marketing, you must read this book. Avinash explains practical implementations that lead the way to taking action to improve your marketing. I can’t recommend Web Analytics an Hour a Day more highly.

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Mike Moran

Mike Moran is an expert in digital marketing, search technology, social media, text analytics, web personalization, and web metrics, who, as a Certified Speaking Professional, regularly makes speaking appearances. Mike’s previous appearances include keynote speaking appearances worldwide. Mike serves as a senior strategist for Converseon, an AI powered consumer intelligence technology and consulting firm. He is also a senior strategist for SoloSegment, a marketing automation software solutions and services firm. Mike also serves as a member of the Board of Directors of SEMPO. Mike spent 30 years at IBM, rising to Distinguished Engineer, an executive-level technical position. Mike held various roles in his IBM career, including eight years at IBM’s customer-facing website, ibm.com, most recently as the Manager of ibm.com Web Experience, where he led 65 information architects, web designers, webmasters, programmers, and technical architects around the world. Mike's newest book is Outside-In Marketing with world-renowned author James Mathewson. He is co-author of the best-selling Search Engine Marketing, Inc. (with fellow search marketing expert Bill Hunt), now in its Third Edition. Mike is also the author of the acclaimed internet marketing book, Do It Wrong Quickly: How the Web Changes the Old Marketing Rules, named one of best business books of 2007 by the Miami Herald. Mike founded and writes for Biznology® and writes regularly for other blogs. In addition to Mike’s broad technical background, he holds an Advanced Certificate in Market Management Practice from the Royal UK Charter Institute of Marketing and is a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. He also teaches at Rutgers Business School. He is a Senior Fellow at the Society for New Communications Research. Mike worked at ibm.com from 1998 through 2006, pioneering IBM’s successful search marketing program. IBM’s website of over two million pages was a classic “big company” website that has traditionally been difficult to optimize for search marketing. Mike, working with Bill Hunt, developed a strategy for search engine marketing that works for any business, large or small. Moran and Hunt spearheaded IBM’s content improvement that has resulted in dramatic gains in traffic from Google and other internet portals.

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