Analytics, for a long time were something that only webmasters were interested in. Unless you had your own website or blog, chances were you did not need them. All that changed with social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, and analytics became relevant for everyone. Neither Facebook nor Twitter users are starved for such services; the internet is littered with big names like HootSuite and several smaller ones that will tell you how many ‘likes’ a Facebook post received, how many new followers you gained, how many times something you tweeted has been retweeted, and more. If analytics interest you, you’ll be pleased to know that Twitter has made its analytics publicly available to everyone, to graph out the number of new followers, unfollows, and retweets etc. over a timeline. They aren’t very sophisticated just yet, and aren’t live either; aggregate data takes 6 hours to appear, and it seems it’s reporting the number of clicks on links inaccurately at the moment. Your data can be exported in CSV and XLS formats. If you’ve used Google Analytics, you won’t be impressed but this is Twitter, and it measures different variables along different parameters.
To access Twitter analytics, visit the link at the end. Pull down the the ‘Analytics’ tab and select ‘Timeline Activity’.
The graph will be blank for a while and data should load over time. You will notice that you have to sign in to analytics, even if you’re already signed in to Twitter. Scroll down to see historic data. Your tweets are categorized into three tabs: ‘Best’, ‘Good’, and ‘All’. For each tweet, you can see how many times it has been favorited, retweeted, and replied to. For tweets with links, you can see next to the tweet itself if it was clicked, as well as the number of times it was clicked.
At the top-right, there’s a ‘Download CSV’ button that will let you download your analytics data. You can download it for the current, the previous day. the last week, last 30 days, or last 3 months. Alternatively, you can specify a date range and time period for the data you want to download.
The analytics are quite basic at the moment, and they’ve only just been made available for all users. For anyone who is using a more sophisticated service – one that can give you live figures – this will not be a temptation. Analytics may be useful but Twitter isn’t providing live analytics just yet and this type of aggregate data is likely to be less useful for serious purposes. However, the casual user who isn’t already using an analytics service is going to find them interesting and insightful. The downloaded data can be used more intelligently but for now, graphs are limited and there are no customized tracking options.