How to keep track of website changes on your website

Having and running a website means that at some point you are going to make changes. The changes might be small like changing the branding or fonts on your website or bigger ones like changing the functional layout of the website. Regardless of the size of the change to your website it can have an impact on visitors to your website.

Website Change Logs

The concept of a “Change Log” is not a new thing and in fact it can be used on a project like a website and software development to document changes to a project and when you go back and look at any site analytics you are collecting and audit the changes made versus the health of your website you can begin to make insights into changes that had positive effects and also negative effects.

Change logs are also a great way to track work that web designers, programmers, developers and other web professionals are doing on your website because it allows you to go back in time and really see what changes may have lead to an issue you saw on your website. Otherwise it can be like hunting for a needle in a haystack.

A non-traditional take on a website change log

Google Analytics recently added the ability to add annotations to your web analytics. Annotations are just notes that you leave in Google Analytics and you can use them for anything. In this case we are using them as a pseudo website change log but they’ve got plenty of other excellent uses.

Creating an annotation in Google Analytics is as easy as clicking “Create new annotation”, choosing the date you want the annotation to get appended to and of course your notes for the website change that you just made.

When you start to analyze the changes you are making to your website you can really begin to understand just exactly how what you do online has an impact on how people shop, find information, use resources or whatever they do on your website.



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