Web Analytics Is An Art Too
“A point of view can be a dangerous luxury when substituted for insight and understanding.” -Marshall McLuhan
According to Web Analytics Association, web analytics is the measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of web data for purposes of understanding and optimizing the web usage itself. From this definition, we can say that web analytics is similar with research of statistical analyzing data related to web. There are hundreds definitions of art, but in this article we will only adapt two of them.
First, according to Oxford English Dictionary, art is the expression or application of creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting, drawing and sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty and emotional power. The other one is from United States Congress that said, art is related to the presentation, performance, execution, and exhibition of such major art forms, all those traditional arts practiced by the diverse peoples.
Measuring, collecting, analyzing, and reporting web data, all need a certain creative skill even though the imagination should be limited to reliable and valid data. Just like artists, researchers who measure and collect data have to use their right and left brain to make sure that the inputted data is valid and reliable.
Sometimes they even need further questions or they would just read the body language of a sample. Sometimes they know that the numbers presented before them are good or not good enough. This kind of specialty-or skill-need sensitivity that could be obtained mostly from experiences.
Reporting and presenting web analytics are not just explaining the numbers we had. We have to translated it to make it more easier to be understood by common people. It needs someone who knows how to make an interesting news or story, then we can say that web analytics is an art too.
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