Web Features

more detailed metrics?

any chance of more detailed metrics, like Google Analytics (http://www.google.com/analytics/)?

i ask because recently i saw a large increase in the number of views of my book, but i have no idea where these views are coming from. it would be helpful to know what website is sending viewers to my book.

maybe it was as easy as supporting/adding the Google Analytics code by default to the book detail page.

thanks,
tracy

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Posted by
threecee
Apr 11, 2008 11:10am PDT
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threecee
 

I know what you mean — I want to know where people are coming from when they look at my books as well!

Unfortunately, something like Google Analytics wouldn’t work, as we’d have to add every author to a permissions list, and then figure out a way to restrict access so authors could only see metrics about their book — I personally wouldn’t be too keen  on other authors being able to see metrics about my book.

Posted by
JackLyon
Apr 11, 2008 3:42pm PDT
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JackLyon
 

i guess i don’t understand why you’d need a permissions list for more detail. other authors can’t see my metrics now, right? i wasn’t saying that Google Analytics should specifically be used for more detail, but was only using Google as an example of the the detail that i would like to see. even if only the domain from which a visitor comes to my book would be very helpful to know.

thanks for the reply,
tracy

Posted by
threecee
Apr 11, 2008 6:51pm PDT
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threecee
 

Actually, no other authors can your stats. Only you. As for seeing referral domains, that’s interesting feedback. We’ll look into it.

Posted by
JackLyon
Apr 14, 2008 1:01am PDT
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JackLyon
 

I SENT THIS TO BLURB:

The bookstore metrics are seriously lacking detail. I’m sure there are reasons (i.e. database access, manpower, etc.).

My suggestion is to allow a book author to paste in a code block from Google Analytics into a form field. This code block in turn is automatically added to the public facing page’s code block (PHP?) for the footer. Then Google Analytics can track the book, offering your authors a more real-time analysis.

Why go through this trouble? In my case, I’m in the early stages of promoting my book – grass roots style – as I would assume many of your authors are doing. When I contact a blog author or website owner interested in soft-promoting my book, I have absolutely NO way of determining the success. To give this more perspective, being a POD author, I have the unhappy reality of having to purchase my own copies——so, the question of whether or not I plunk down $30 and mail one to the blog/website author or not becomes an issue.

I can imagine that the Blurb.com Web developers will immediate scream Security Issue, BUT.. a simple comparison of the code being pasted in and submitted can be easily accomplished, rejecting a bad copy-paste or rejecting anything not fitting Google’s format. This is NOT hard and is done every day in back-end Web development.

An example code block from google for one of my sites:

[EXAMPLE GOOGLE ANALYTICS CODE BLOCK]

and exists on a page just before the final body tag.

Easy, adds unprecedented analytics features to your author’s public book page… and most importantly, it’s a win win scenario.

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BLURB RESPONSE:

Hello Allan,

Thanks for this suggestion. I will pass it along to our development team and let them mull this idea around.

We appreciate your help here!

Thanks again,

Jay
Customer Support

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Posted by
allansturm
Apr 18, 2008 10:18am PDT
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allansturm
 

Hi Allan,

your suggestion would be exactly what I would like to see, and I agree, it doesn’t seem like it would be too difficult to implement, nor too risky, security-wise.

And, like you, I had to do some internet sleuthing and personal web site mods to determine the source of a sudden spike in visits to my book’s blurb page. Luckily, I had created my own domain name (that’s easy to remember) that redirects to my blurb page (which isn’t easy to remember). it also allows me to update my book on blurb (which will generate a whole new URL) but still keep one domain name for my book that’s under my control, and on which I can use Google Analytics to get the detail for which I was looking. I suggest that you give this workaround a try.

best,
tracy

Posted by
threecee
Apr 22, 2008 1:17am PDT
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threecee
 

Hey threecee – That’s a really clever idea. Sounds like its working well.

As far as allowing Google Analytics access to authors, security is obviously an important piece, but something we could address. The issue with using that specific solution I’ve mentioned above. Google Analytics is a tool that’s geared around companies, not end users. From what I’ve seen, each user has to be added manually, and once added can see every report.

Rest assured, we understand that any additional metrics would be greatly valued, and its something we’re currently looking into.  

Posted by
JackLyon
Apr 23, 2008 10:41am PDT
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JackLyon
 

Concerning the issue, does anyone know how to track some of those metric in anyway? (even a third part website).

Thanks a lot.

Posted by
AntoineCoup
Oct 10, 2012 8:49am PDT
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AntoineCoup