Online Statisitcs

How we measure web activity and define online success

Wednesday, June 8th, 2011 | Global Cool | No Comments

internetOur most recent web statistics have shown yet more impressive growth since our last update. Highlights from May’s results included:

  • Most ever number of monthly unique users on globalcool.org
  • Most ever monthly page views
  • Highest number of repeat visitors
  • Highest percentage of people opening our newsletter
  • Most number of interactions on the website, Facebook and Twitter

Global Cool’s online activity has three main channels: the Global Cool website, our weekly newsletter and social media activity (mainly on Facebook, Twitter and You Tube, but also increasingly on Flickr and Four Square). In each of these channels we measure the reach of our activity and also the depth of affinity and engagement with our message.

As a campaigning organisation seeking to change the general public’s behaviour by making green lifestyles more attractive, clearly it’s important for us to communicate with as many people as possible, as frequently as possible. However, we also recognise the importance of monitoring how people respond to our messages.

Reach is relatively straightforward to measure: how many people visited the website, how many people opened the newsletter, how many followers do we have on Twitter etc etc. Affinity and engagement measures are more complicated and nuanced. Deciding what type user behaviour demonstrates affinity with your message and what demonstrates engagement is not an exact science. Some examples of affinity we measure include repeat visitors to the website, searches for our brand name, opens of our newsletter etc. Examples of engagement include commenting on a blog post, entering a competition or a retweet on Twitter.

It’s also worth noting that affinity and engagement measures will not always be positive. Some comments, tweets, Facebook messages will be from people telling you you’re doing it wrong, or that they hate you. Some people might view several pages on your website because they are so outraged by how dumb they think your article was that they want to make sure the rest of your content is just as disagreeable to their particular sensibilities.

In terms of the former, we do take a measure of how much negative feedback we get and it regularly comes at less than 0.5% of our total audience. The highest it’s ever been in a single month is 1%. For the latter it’s difficult to ever know what motivates someone to look at two, three, four pages on your site. However, given the tiny amount of negative engagement we get, we are willing to take a leap of faith and assume the vast majority of affinity-like behaviour we see is also motivated by positive rather than negative sentiment.

All in all, Global Cool is now reaching in excess of 70,000 people per month across all three of our main web channels. Of those people, around 22% are demonstrating affinity with our message and 11% are engaging with us.

We are keen to know how you measure your online activity and how you define your success indicators, particularly if, like Global Cool you are seeking to encourage behaviour change or promote green living. Feel free to leave us a comment below…

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We run Global Cool, the only online magazine in the UK truly inspiring the mainstream to live greener

We create content about music, fashion, celebrity and lifestyle trends. We use this content to inspire people normally turned off by climate change to lead greener lives. We reached more than 200,000 people in 2011 and we don't preach to the converted. In fact, 93% of our audience say we are the only green organisation they engage with.

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