Monday, December 16, 2013

Oh Google, you've a problem with your analytics tags!

I like Google Tag Assistant - it tells me when I'm messed up with my Analytics tags. But oh Google, it makes you look, well, stupid.

Here's what the Tag Assistant shows for an analytics page. Not just multiple tags (that's a no-no, according to Google), but tags without a property? WTF!

Friday, December 13, 2013

What have you done?

"Liam, what have you done to my Christmas card?"
"I've cutting it"
"But because I love you"

Nativity Play

In which Liam, as camel #1, takes centre stage.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Autumn fields

Nice to see almost lush green fields so late in October.

Saturday, October 05, 2013

Magpies: the new sparrows

After several years 'off island' I've returned, and one change that sticks out: the lack of urban birdlife. Where have all the sparrows gone? Sure there are lots of magpies, and doves (or more probably, pigeons), but sparrows, and starlings too, are just not to be found in cities and towns that used to call them pests.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Google moves to secure site search: Analytics keyword data goes up in smoke

While you can still get at keyword data via Google Webmaster Tools (or within GA under Search Engine Optimisation) the difference is that GWT related keyword data is only kept for 90 days and is only for the top 2k of queries - not ideal.

Of course, if you use Adwords, you still have access to the data, and therein lies the big stink, especially since Google are saying it's been done to protect users' privacy.

To get at your GWT keyword data, you'll need to go into the related Adwords account and request the data be linked. Once linked, it's accessible under the Dimensions tab, and will look something like this.

Related Links - probably the most useful that I've seen:

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Sunday, September 08, 2013

In the playground

West Park, Macclesfield

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Monday, April 08, 2013

Visitor Flow: possibly the most useful Analytics Report. Ever.

Visitor Flow shows you precisely how people move within your site, and is an awesome report, especially since you can not only select the dimension (answering the question 'When people find my via organic search, how do they move through the site?') but also lets you highlight traffic at a particular point of interaction (answering the question 'what number of people drop-off at page x?').

The Visitor Flow report can be found within the Audience menu.

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Monitoring Your Social Media

If you take your social media seriously, then you'll need tools to monitor your - and others - output. Let's have a look at a few such tools. It's worth noting I particularly wanted a tool that can also monitor my Pinterest account.

The ‘All-in-one dashboard’. Shows key data, in a very pleasing layout. Social accounts are added as widgets, and the free plan allows for 6 widgets. What's great is that it can pull data form many social channels, including Pinterest. The Pro plan will cost you $19 monthly.

'Analyse, Publish, Engage'. A focus on Facebook and Twitter, the Bronze Plan allows for one Twitter and one Facebook account to be monitored for $7/month. The Silver Plan is $31/month, allowing up to 10 social accounts.


Another FB/Twitter monitoring tool, and particualrly good at showing user engagement.  It lists (and email alerts) mentions of your chosen keyword, but Pro version also offers analytics. The Free version allows a quota of 500 mentions/month. Pro allows for a massive 50k mentions per month $19.99/month.


Purely Twitter. Offer Best Times to Tweet, biggest Influencers, and a raft of other data.

Free plan allows for 1 Twitter account. Premium $6.95/month 2 accounts. Other plans available.


Allows you to monitor several types of social media: FB, Twitter, G+, LinkedIn, FourSquare among others (but no Pinterest). Wide range of functions: show Streams, detailed analytics, schedule tweets etc. Free plan allows for 5 social profiles. Pro plan ($9.99/month) has unlimited profiles.

Raven Tools

The 500-pound gorilla of social media monitoring.

Free 30-day trial. Pro $99/month. FB, Twitter, YouTube only.

For pure Pinterest monitoring, try Lets you search for a keyword, and shows pins, boards, people. Also pulls data from an appropriate GA account. Free.

Other, untried tools include, which offers a 21 day free trial, and 30 day free trial, then just $399/month!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Amazon's AutoRip

Amazon have just launched an interesting new feature (in the US only though). Called Auto-Rip, it converts to MP3 every applicable CD you've ever purchased back to 1998.

It integrates with their Cloud Player, and once you turn that on, the content of those CDs will appear magically as MP3s in your Cloud Player. Which is rather nice.

Here's Amazon's press release on the service, and here's an interesting take on the service, (basically saying nice, but who buys Cds anymore?).

Though that only amounted to 8 CDs for me, it did have me wondering: "What the?!" when I saw what I'd bought, way back when. The Barry White must (bold, italic) have been a gift; same for Santana. Bowie and The Stranglers were a nostalgia trip I still recall (nay, am still going through). Costello's 'Painted From Memory' is still one of my favourite Costello albums.

But the two track Bach: Goldberg Variations mono recording from 1955? Help, my Amazon account's been hacked!

Wednesday, January 02, 2013