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Real-Time Click Tracking, Charting and Analytics Introduced

Monday, March 20, 2006

To help marketers and bloggers using FeedBlitz to deliver easily managed RSS-based newsletters, we have enabled comprehensive click through tracking, charting and reporting. Click through tracking enables you to understand the relative popularity of the posts in your syndicated feeds. Here's a sample of the analysis FeedBlitz can now deliver:

You can view a summary of all the click throughs for all your feeds, or you can start from a specific feed.

Regardless of where you start from, clicking on a chart element (bar or line or area) drills down a level into the data, ultimately allowing you to see a time trend of click throughs on your posts. There's a wealth of information and knowledge you can build, as well as much more detail on activity than is available in any comparable service.

Under the chart, you can see a table summarizing the data in the chart.

Multiple Analysis Options

Simple to use, just by clicking on the chart or using the two list boxes top right, you can easily tailor the view by choosing from:

  • Multiple chart options (including no chart at all)
  • Multiple time frames, from today only to all time
  • Multiple chart options: stacked or unstacked; bar, line or area.

At any time you can click on the link in the table and visit the original source post.

Truly Real-Time

If you click through on an email update with link tracking enabled (text or HTML) and refresh the chart, your click will be registered on the analysis – it's truly real-time, and transparent to users. You also see activity on each individual post, which enables you to clearly see how your readership reacts to your content.

For example, last week, reaction to FeedBlitz's OPML reading list syndication announcement was ho-hum, but people really liked knowing that things weren't going to be as orange as before.

What Activity is Tracked (and What Isn't)?

The following links that FeedBlitz manages in your outbound updates are automatically tracked when this feature is enabled:

  • The main title link back to your blog
  • Individual post header links
  • Links on teaser / call to action text for posts truncated in FeedBlitz
  • Enclosure links (i.e. podcasts)

Links within a post are not automatically tracked when this feature is enabled; comments on this limit and whether we should change it are welcome. This feature also does not track individual users; only aggregate activity is tracked. Also, if a user clicks on a links multiple times, that counts as multiple click-throughs. Hey, if it's that interesting, you ought to know about it, right?

Availability and Configuration

Click through tracking is available now to all publishers, on the standard and premium services. All feeds have tracking disabled, so action is required to start seeing the data.

To enable click-through tracking, go to www.feedblitz.com/f?Lists and click the “details” icon (yellow meshed gears) for the relevant feed.

A new configuration check box is now available to set up click-through tracking. Check it on and save the feed. Click through tracking will now be enabled for all future updates. Emails that have already been sent cannot be tracked since they aren't using the tracking links in the messages, so don't expect to see any activity until you post a new entry to your blog and it is sent out – the timing of that, of course, depends largely on you.

If you enable or disable click-tracking for an OPML syndication, all the child feeds contained in that OPML syndication will also have click-through tracking enabled or disabled in parallel, just as you'd expect.

Click tracking is probably most important for users who use FeedBlitz to truncate their posts in order to drive traffic back to their web sites. We thoroughly recommend enabling click-tracking for your syndications if you are limiting the size of each post. Otherwise you may want to consider enabling it d epending on your needs. Marketers also like this information as it enables them to gauge content popularity.

Accessing Your Analytics

Analyzing your click throughs couldn't be simpler. From the dashboard www.feedblitz.com/f simply click the new “Real-time interactive click-through analysis” link which will show you all the click through data for all your feeds for the last seven days (by default). You can the drill down to see these results by feed and then by time.

Alternatively, you can go to your feed management page at www.feedblitz.com/f?Lists and click the analysis icon (the pie chart ) for an individual feed. That takes you straight to the time-based analysis for that specific feed.

So get started and explore this new set of capabilities. We're by no means done on the analytics front, so stay tuned for more powerful and exciting features from the Web's number one blog and RSS to mail service provider.

   

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