Google Analytics – sharing our site’s stats with the world

We’ve recently added an analytics dashboard to beta.govt.nz — sharing our Google Analytics stats. Our site’s development is iterative and we’re using these numbers to measure our success and learn, so we can continually make changes based on how our site is actually being used, not just how we think it should be.

Just like using open source code to share with our industry colleagues, displaying our analytics provides visibility to others who are watching our progress so, if need be, they can learn and better develop their own sites. Working together, government agencies can provide better services for all New Zealanders.

We are using these analytics, in conjunction with a more detailed set, to:

  • measure usage growth
  • measure our site’s communication/promotional activity
  • monitor traffic to site across time and day to gain insight to user behaviour
  • monitor what devices and browsers people are using so we can plan for future development
  • prioritise which content sections we review

The dashboard is an experimental feature: We know that the graphs will not display properly on some web browsers, especially Internet Explorer 8, so if it's not immediately available to you, pick up another device and try again. The tables of data on the page show the same information that’s in the graphs — this is important for accessibility. The information we share may change over time too. Let us know if there is something specific you’d like to see us report on.

Analytics are one set of feedback. Numbers are quantifiable and when using Google Analytics we know they are from a trusted and authoritative source, so they are great to use and present to a wide audience. Analytics also make us think — they challenge us and we’d love your feedback too in helping us consider how we can continue to develop the site. Let us know what you think.

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