Cookies: How to Improve Your Website and Learn From Your Visitors
Question: How can you improve your visitor’s experience of your website AND at the same time learn how to improve your website (or learn how to increase sales)?
Cookies? Yes. Let me explain…
A “cookie” is simply a small piece of text information which a web server stores temporarily with your web visitor’s browser. (Note: cookies are *not* programs.) This means your visitor’s browser remembers some specific information which the web server can later retrieve.
So cookies simply allow your site to store information on your visitor’s computer for later retrieval.
A basic example of a cookie in action can be found here – http://members.rediff.com/lc/cookies.htm
Basically, cookies allow you to improve a site visitor’s experience of your website. I’ve listed a few examples to show how this can be achieved:
* Cookies can store visitor preferences. This means you can present customised information to your visitor, as per their own requirements. (This is how portal sites like MSN work.)
* Cookies can pre-fill form fields for your visitor.
* Cookies can automatically login visitors to your site
* Cookies can provide visitor statistics and therefore help you understand your visitor’s needs. Cookies can provide site metrics like unique visitors, average number of page-views, percentage of repeat visitors et cetera. And cookie-generated statistics are much more accurate than using log files.
(Do remember though, that people sometimes share computers; some browsers are set to reject cookies; and cookies can be erased.)
So not only are cookies an efficient way of keeping track of information, they also help personalise your site visitor’s experience of your site.
USE THIS COOKIE RESOURCE
OR VISIT THESE SITES TO LEARN ABOUT COOKIES
If you want to know more about how cookies work, then visit these sites:
OR JUST DO IT YOURSELF!
CGI/Perl cookies – http://cgi.resourceindex.com/Programs_and_Scripts/Perl/Cookies/
Developing a User Personalization System with PHP and Cookies – http://www.devshed.com/Server_Side/PHP/Cookies/
ASP and cookies – http://www.w3schools.com/asp/asp_cookies.asp
You can find out a great deal more about using cookies on your site from the following excellent resources. Just do a search for “cookies” and off you go!
STEVE M NASH is the author of the ebook: “3 Super-Tips To
Build, Promote And Profit More From Your Website.” Download
your free copy now! http://www.wise-buys.info/bonus.shtml
He’s also the author of many popular articles aimed at
webmasters, affiliates, even complete beginners. Read them