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William

Every Click Counts

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Staff

We have a large-screen television on the wall in our offices. It’s become a favorite show-and-tell spot when we give guests a tour of our space.

 

It’s a boring screen, in one sense — no movies or fancy graphics, but just a dashboard of the current traffic to the website. But once you learn what the numbers mean, you get a sense of the significance. The main purpose of the screen is to remind our team, as we write and edit and craft social media, that tens of thousands of real-live users access the site each day. The dashboard stays on constantly during work hours so that we can monitor at a glance the number of current visitors, what pages are being viewed most, and where the traffic is coming from.

 

During tours, we pause at the screen and explain how it reminds our team that we’re not simply building and curating webpages and apps, but that human souls are on the other end, coming for nourishment, education, correction, and inspiration. Typically, eyes open wide in manifest surprise that we’re actually able to track, to a precise figure, the number of people currently on the site, the particular pages being viewed, and even who referred them to our site.

 

How the Web Works

 

Over time I’ve learned to turn that surprise into a teachable moment.

 

You’re never alone when you’re online. Not only is God watching — which should be significant enough! — but others are watching too. Every click counts, and is counted. Whenever you retrieve information from some server out there in the world, that server knows it was pinged. And that specific ping can be tracked. Someone can find out what particular page you viewed, how you got there, how long you stayed, where you went next, and even where your cursor hovered on the page.

 

You should assume that every time you click, someone knows exactly what you clicked on — and that information informs whether the builders of that site will deliver more of the content you accessed.

 

Every click matters.

 

Every Click You Make

 

Yes, knowing a little bit about how the Internet works has plain implications for the fight against pornography — both personally and collectively. But knowing how the web works helps with much more than just avoiding “bad places” online. There’s not just the negative effects, but also a million positive opportunities. And the significance is not just momentary, but eternal.

 

Source: http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/every-click-counts

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Having worked with a marketing department in one of my previous jobs I was exposed to how far they are able to drill down when tracking traffic through the company's website. It is really quite amazing how it allows them to fine tune the page. Eliminate things people aren't looking at, and move stuff around so it is more noticeable. I did find a diagram at one point, a long time ago, that shows how the human eye naturally will move across a page. I will have to dig it up sometime if I can remember what it was called.

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Having worked with a marketing department in one of my previous jobs I was exposed to how far they are able to drill down when tracking traffic through the company's website. It is really quite amazing how it allows them to fine tune the page. Eliminate things people aren't looking at, and move stuff around so it is more noticeable. I did find a diagram at one point, a long time ago, that shows how the human eye naturally will move across a page. I will have to dig it up sometime if I can remember what it was called.

 

Yes, I use only Google Analytics on this site. I can track people's clicks, and also see the hot spots and dead spots on a page. I think the article though failed to emphasize how a search engine tracks, tracking your actual search behavior. If you search for porn, given the use of cookies etc, expect to be subjected to porn material more frequently. It is one of the reasons I do not use Google ads on this site. If someone searches the net for porn then visits this site, the site will serve porn ads, though it is possible for me to block those ads, people don't understand the reason why they are being served them at all.

 

God bless,

William

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