I recently had the pleasure of participating in a website redesign for the UF College of Education. We’re pretty proud of the results from the front-end, subjective perspective. But – more importantly – we’re happy with what Google Analytics tells us about traffic to the site.
We have been excited by a lot of the data we have pulled during and since the web redesign process. The most recent fun things I have noticed is the striking difference between traffic to our site since the redesign. For example, the following table represents traffic to the site based on the time periods listed in the top row. The periods represent 13 months prior to the the website redesign, and the time since the new site was launched, respectively.
||January 1, 2010 – January 31, 2011
||February 1, 2011 – February 28, 2011
|Average daily visits
|Average time on the site
|Average unique page views
|Most visits in a single day
||695 (Wednesday, January 6, 2010)
||2,362 (Tuesday, February 1, 2011)
|Fewest visits in a single day
||116 (Saturday, December 25, 2010)
||687 (Saturday, February 19, 2011)
|Percentage of visitors who arrived through search engines
|Percentage of visitors from Gainesville, FL
I just shed a little tear. After slowly convincing myself and others that one of the most tangible benefits of offering a ‘Community’ for learners in the UF COE was the fact we would eventually start showing up in searches, I finally got my confirmation.
How ’bout dem apples? I had to add the “uf coe” to get my stuff to bubble to the top. But I chalk that up to having a rather common name, shared with a rather unique senator and a petulant movie character.
This is just the beginning. The more tweaking we do to our applications, and the closer we adhere to Google’s “recommendations” for SEO, the better our return will be. According to the Goog, the community.education.ufl.edu domain currently shows up in 182 unique query strings.
How many hits does it take to get to the center of the Google bot?
We are beginning to crack at the SEO aspects of our new system. The rename of the distance.education to community.education sub-domain seems to have knocked our site down in the Google page rank scheme of things. We will need to do some heavy lifting to get it back in place.
Unfortunately, Kampyle no longer offers a free service to any new users. I was hoping to employ a system like Kampyle to glean feedback from users of Purlieu. We’ll have to re-think the feedback process; it might just be easier to write a little application that will aggregate user feedback in a database we can manage.