Saturday, February 14, 2009

Measuring is Better Than Not Measuring

Simply stated, Gilb's Law says:
"Anything you need to quantify can be measured in some way that is superior to not measuring it at all."

This applies to building a house, learning to improve estimates, improving performance, and even monitoring the visitor and page statistics of your blog.

The old saw says "measure twice, cut once". I've found this to be an elemental truth. Imagine framing a house and cutting lumber to length based on what looks good, not measuring. Apply this same concept to your blog. It would be like making a decision about what to write and not knowing if similar articles get a good response or are visitor bounces.

This should not be the only factor you consider. Is your blog about business and building a market presence, or about your personal interests? Each has its place and you should feel free to write about your passions.

Collecting statistics about the visitors to your blog is easy. Choose one of the statistics sites listed, and follow the simple instructions to add the tracking tag to your blog. All of these have free offerings, a few have premium paid services, some are only hit counters or just statistics, and some offer both. As a matter of principle, you should know that I use Google Analytics. It took about 10 minutes to create an account and update my template.

Future posts will look at site statistics, what they tell you, and how to use them.

1 comment:

  1. As long as collecting measurements doesn't drag your performance into a hole... In those cases, stochastic sampling is better, rather than the capture of every event. Much of optimization is really avoiding pessimal behaviour. Big business hasn't caught on to this, for the most part.


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