Beryl Fifield 2002
Who loved this view
Trees block the view from the bench here. I suspect Beryl loved the bigger views round the corner, but without the new skyscrapers poking up into the horizon's sweep.
The segment shows sessions where the number of sessions to transaction is more than one (so 'returning' visitors making a purchase, in theory) and where the days to transaction is zero (the sessions were actually on the same day). Many of these orders were probably part of single 'real life' visit which was split by the standard sessionisation schema.
The segment works well on the 'Sessions to Transaction' tab of the 'Time to Purchase' report.
Behind the dramatic title is a rant I've made so very, very often in workshops, trainings, and consultation work.
Have you ever actually stopped to consider just what metrics you are optimizing against when using a web analytics platform? Google Analytics, for example, stitches the raw hit-level data coming in from the website into Sessions and Users. The latter has some grounding in the real world (all hits shared by a single clientId), but the former is completely arbitrary, artificial, and irrelevant.
Never mind the vague description of what constitutes a session in Google Analytics, because it rarely has anything to do with the thing we're really trying to convert against: a user with some specific intent. Intent is tricky, since it can span across many "Sessions", devices, days, weeks, and even websites. But that's what we should be interested in.
Conversion Rate, for example, is an inherently flawed metric, as it's bound to the concept of Sessions. Change the definition of a session even a little bit, by e.g. increasing or decreasing session timeout, and Conversion Rate will change.
I wrote this article to vent, but I have found that many seem to forget what I consider the basic tenet of data collection and processing: the numbers you see in reports make sense only if you understand and accept the underlying schema.
So this is more a call for critical thinking than a request to change how these tools work (though I do rant a bit about this as well).
A common mistake is for retailers over hyping a product as well as suggesting the item would magically change their life style, be it a pharmaceutical or evening attire. If the product does not live up to the customers expectation, then well, expect a return. People have a no tolerance with liars and fibbers.
Another aspect is hidden charges, or even poor customer support. Yes there are rapid refunders out there to take merchants for a ride, but most can be handled with a terms of sale agreement.
Simply be an honest transparent merchant and offer the best customer support that you can, and you will find return rates will melt away, gain more sales and often get recurring customers.
No pin to enter: I used a key too. I got the impression the Pin doesn't work.
There as wifi. Didn't reach well even to the back of the kitchen (big place, solid walls?).
I'll put you in touch with the host via email. Maybe you can pick up the signal.
Craig Sullivan lets rip on an important theme: most of the best practice advice you read is not wrong, but it's not 'right' for you either. The more time I spend working on sites, the more I see his point confirmed.
It strikes a chord with me. When I talked about "People Centred Analytics" at Superweek the creepy tactics of 'engagement' were precisely what I did not have in mind.
I'm trying to encourage analysts, as people, to empathise with people. Work out what people want and provide it. But step back, and keep in the background. We should providing an improved service, but not presuming to intrude on people's lives.
Simple rule: if it would creep you out, don't do it.
I often follow this with a second filter to append the referring information, if available. Doing so helps to track down the source and fix it.
I was matching for a Title which contained "404" then something then "not" to avoid matching Titles for which contained something like Product Code 404958
The filter could be made a lot tighter. For example ^404.*not would require that the Title starts with the 404
You should edit the filter to suit your own site.
I only gave this as an example.
You can change standard behaviour/content reports to show the Title field and then use a table search to check what your filter matches.
- CxFocusConsultant, specialising in web analytics for e-commerce, present
- I share items mostly about analytics and ecommerce on Twitter
- My CxFocus blog contains longer help, advice and tips for ecommerce merchants who want to use analytics, surveys and tests to make their sites better. There's loads of stuff like video tutorials and Google Analytics Custom Reports to download.
- I'm using my Google+ page for a mixture of sharing other items of interest to people working in ecommerce as well as some of my own ecommerce advice (longer than Twitter, shorter than my blog posts)
- My Facebook page is where I share short links to ecommerce-only advice and tips which I think are useful to retailers
In those days I was working on experimental content sites, but these days I specialise in e-commerce because:
- I have a background in mail order dating back to the seventies
- We're all shoppers and if I can do anything to make that less-bad then I've done something vaguely useful!
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