On a major web development implementation, the best way to determine the scope of a project is to do a Needs Analysis. To determine how to best design the site for ease of use, navigation, what products and factors to focus the viewers attention on, where top spend marketing budget for best ROI, set metrics to measure the success of site, etc.
Analytics (as opposed to Analysis) are online software tools to help you track traffic statistics of your web site.
Analysis to include:
- Ranking Analysis – of home page to determine competitive strengths & weaknesses
- Page Critique – search engine algorithm review of existing site’s home page and one product page to document possible improvements to site for better rankings. This review will consist of typical ranking criteria of the major search engines such as meta-tag data, keyword placement and prominence, ALT tags, title tags, etc.
- Keyword Analysis – keyword usage statistics to determine best keywords
- Pay Per Click Strategy Analysis – budget considerations for select keywords for PPC strategies, based on customer knowledge of conversion rates, traffic, pricing, mark up, etc.
- Existing Site Analysis – review technical requirements using the ID and login of admin section, review existing documentation to determine customization
- Review Traffic Statistics – (see Analytics below) if available, to determine any patterns that may drive design and usability issues such as key exit pages.
- Summarized Recommendations – design recommendations based on business drivers, more accurate pricing estimate for design & development
- Detailed Documentation – both printed and on CD (for interactive reports) – detailed reports
The Difference Between Analytics and Needs Analysis
Google (and various other online vendors) offer free Analytics for your web site. These tools can help you make smarter decisions in the future, if you implement them. Google Analytics is code you insert into your web site that tracks a great number of actions: such as number of visitors, how long they stay on certain pages, where the leave the site from, where the come from, what key word they used to search for the site, etc. These Analytical tools are just part of the Analysis needed. Google Analytics supplies you with raw data and even some charting, but you need to be able to interpret this data to make smart decisions with it.
Analysis of your site goes much deeper than just the traffic statistics. It covers all the items mentioned above plus more if needed.
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