By Aimee Graeber • 10/24/2012
The Internet is the biggest, fastest, beefiest, most extraordinary communications and marketing tool we have ever known—and it is relatively young. As the Internet matures—and these new media empires along with it—our websites will change and the tools that we build them with will evolve too.
The things that don’t change are the goals you want people to complete. You’ll always want customers to complete a transaction, you’ll always want to keep their name on a list of some sort, and more than likely you’ll always be serving them ads in some fashion. These things are what make a Mequoda System. Options you have when building a publishing website are somewhat resilient; while we always grow to adapt the tools we’re working with and the architecture to stay modern, the end-goals don’t waver.
We’ve built our own system upon the SEO-friendly, always evolving, open-source WordPress platform. It’s the popular choice for publishers such as The New York Times, Elle and CNN. With this platform, we have the added benefit of a community (and an internal staff of talented developers) that develops plugins and re-wires APIs to make websites do exactly what we want them to do.
In a Mequoda System website, one with the primary goal of converting visitors into buyers, these are the options we find to be mandatory for success:
Analytics: Every successful digital publisher and online marketer knows how to interpret their website’s analytical data. Knowing the definitions of common Google Analytics terms like visits, page views, and bounce rates are important—but it’s only half the battle.For websites, some metrics are more important than others, and understanding their context is key. Knowing which key metrics to follow can be confusing—in fact, many site owners end up paying attention to the wrong ones.
At Mequoda, we use Google Analytics to track these metrics because it’s free and because it’s made by the same company we so desperately want to rank well with—Google. In our systems, Google Analytics code is added to the bottom of all of the web pages, enabling Google Analytics Reporting. We set up funnels for free report flows, which allows you to see the entrances and exits for each page of the flow. With everything in place, you can see where people came from, how they’re using your website, how long they stayed, and when they left. You can also see at which point in your order flow a customer dropped off, and use Content Experiments to A/B test landing pages.Discover how to design a user-friendly website when you download our FREE Website Homepage Ideas white paper.