16 Mar, 2009  |  Written by  |  under Analytics

I’m a big fan of Google Analytics, and check it often for clients’ sites, to see how things are going and get ideas about how to make improvements. One of the most frustrating stats for me is the “Bounce”. Today, I’ll show you a new tool for getting inside what happens during a bounce.


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12 Mar, 2009  |  Written by  |  under SEO

I’ve seen this a bunch recently, so when I saw this on Twitter tonight, I was curious what was up:


I have a great new tool that spiders sites and helps understand what’s up with on-site PageRank flow. It’s A1 Website Analyzer (free full-featured 30-day trial download), from Microsys Tools. I’ve used Xenu and other spider tools in the past, but what sets this tool apart is their on-site PageRank simulator.  This is a GREAT asset for understanding where PageRank is going and how to make it flow better.

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12 Mar, 2009  |  Written by  |  under Analytics

One of the great mysteries of Google Analytics is just why they won’t let us see referring URLs of our users. Probably some privacy concern of Google’s, but it’s easy as pie to get from web server logs, so I don’t understand the issue.

I’m so dependent on Analytics for day-to-day work that I really would prefer to have all the info in one place (Analytics) instead of having to integrate log-based reporting (and deal with clients asking why the two give different numbers!).  Here’s how to do it:

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11 Mar, 2009  |  Written by  |  under Analytics

I normally set up sites to just log 404s and check the log files for problems, which is fine for me, but hard for clients.  Here’s how I recently set up a site so the client’s marketing folks could spot 404s on their own:

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10 Mar, 2009  |  Written by  |  under AdWords

I have a client who manages their own AdWords campaigns, but I check in on them once a month and see if anything is obviously going wrong. This works well, because the client is in control and handles day-to-day changes without me charging them, but they also have a “safety net” in case problems come up.

This morning, I noticed they have a broad match keyword getting LOTS of impressions and NO clicks. This is dragging down their Ad Group’s quality and costing them more on the keywords they are getting clicks on.

So, why might this happen?  There are a few possibilities:

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5 Mar, 2009  |  Written by  |  under Astronomy

We have a little telescope, and were out looking at the moon a few weeks ago. The image through the eyepiece was just amazing, and I thought I might be able to get a picture of it holding my DSLR camera. It worked out pretty well!


27 Feb, 2009  |  Written by  |  under AdWords

One of the big problems we see with clients’ campaigns is that they have keywords (or groups, or whole campaigns) that have excessively high bounce rates. Those should be taken out behind the barn and shot, but how do you separate the bad ones from the good ones? Analytics makes it easy!

Finding High Bounce Rate Keywords

Finding High Bounce Rate Keywords

Here’s how:

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24 Feb, 2009  |  Written by  |  under AdWords

I’ve been using Google Docs more and more lately, and wanted to use their Spreadsheet for some AdWords bulk writing, but needed a letter counter to be sure my titles and ad lines were short enough to work.

PPCProz.com has the code for Excel here: http://blog.ppcproz.com/2009/02/3-secrets-creating-adwords-ads.html

So it was just a question of converting it to Google’s spreadsheet. Google spreadsheet doesn’t support formulas in conditional coloring, so I had to embed the formulas in the cells, then apply conditional coloring. Not too much harder, and I tweaked it to show the number of remaining characters until you go over the limit, then turn red. Here’s how:

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10 Sep, 2008  |  Written by  |  under Uncategorized

I saw this on Twitter this morning:

Hey, best case, we harness the power of God. Worst case? We all die in an artificial black hole.

and at first I thought it was about McCain/Palin vs. Obama/Biden.  Then I remembered LHC.  Yay, we’re all still here!

29 Aug, 2008  |  Written by  |  under ColdFusion

This has been an issue for a long time, but the past few weeks, we’ve started to see some automated attacks against ColdFusion sites trying to inject rogue SQL via forms and other parameters.  Ugh.  I’ve been working with a great piece of code called Portcullis, but it has a few rough edges that make it hard to deploy.  Here’s my application.cfm, in case it’s useful for anybody else fighting this:

	<cfif isdefined("application.Portcullis") eq false or isdefined("url.reset")>
	<cfset application.Portcullis = createObject("component","com.fusionlink.Portcullis").init()/>

	<cfset application.Portcullis.scan(url,"url",cgi.remote_addr)>
	<cfset application.Portcullis.scan(form,"form",cgi.remote_addr)>
	<cfset application.Portcullis.scan(cookie,"cookie",cgi.remote_addr)>

	<cfif application.Portcullis.isBlocked(cgi.remote_addr) eq true>
	 Sorry, there was an error detected.
	 <cfmail from="you@you.com"
	  subject="SEI Portcullis: User Blocked" type="html">
	  <cfdump var="#cgi#"/>

	<cfcatch type="any">
	 <cfmail from="you@you.com"
	  subject="SEI Portcullis Threw Exception" type="html">
	detail: #cfcatch.Detail# <br />
	<cfif IsDefined("cfcatch.SQLState")>
	sqlstate: #cfcatch.SQLState# <br />
	type: #cfcatch.type# <br />
	  <cfdump var="#cgi#"/>