Student Blogging Activity 6 (Beginner): Add A Visitor Tracking Widget To Your Blog Sidebar

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It’s likely that your blog gets visitors from around the world.

But unless you find ways of displaying visitor numbers and their geographical locations, your students won’t appreciate that they’re publishing posts for a global audience.

In this sixth activity you will:

  1. Learn about the benefits of adding a visitor tracking widget to your blog
  2. Be introduced to commonly used visitor tracking widgets
  3. Add a visitor tracking tool to your blog sidebar
  4. Complete the extension activity (if you have time)

Step 1: Benefits of having a Tracking widget

  • Knowing you’re writing for a global audience is incredibly motivating for students.
  • Realizing people from other countries are reading what they’ve written increases their interest, excitement and motives them to blog.
  • It also provides built-in geography lessons — as most students constantly check for new visitors and enjoy finding out more about the countries where their visitors are from.

Step 2: Commonly used visitor tracking widgets

There’s numerous different types of visitor tracking widgets you can use, and it isn’t uncommon for teachers and students to use more than one type on their blogs.

Below are the most commonly used ones with instructions on how to install.

Please note:

All visitor tracking widgets require you to add embed code to a text widget

To be able to add the embed do you need to be either using:

Each Edublogs Pro blog can upgrade up to 50 student (or other blogs).  Once upgraded these blogs:

  • Will have absolutely no advertising displayed on them
  • Access to and full use of all 100 + Premium themes
  • The ability to embed videos, JavaScript and other third party code

ClustrMaps

ClustrMaps is a thumbnail hit counter map widget that shows the geographical location of all visitors to your blog. Number of visitors from a location is indicated by the relative size of the dot.

Clicking the ClustrMaps thumbnail takes you to a large World map so you can examine your traffic sources more closely.

There is a ClustrMaps widget in the left hand side bar of this blog.

Here’s comprehensive ‘how to’ add a ClustrMaps to Your Sidebar Using The ClustrMaps widget

Flag Counter

Flag Counter widget shows the total number of visitors from each country next to the country’s flag. Every time someone from a new country visits your site, a new flag will be added to your counter.

Clicking on the flag counter takes you to your Flag counter page which provides more detailed charts and information about your visitors.

See it in action on Technology in Our Classroom!

Example of a Flag counter

Here’s how to add a Flag Counter:

1.  Go to Flag Counter

2.  Choose the maximum flags to show, number of columns of flags and your color scheme then click Get Your Flag Counter

Please Note: most blog sidebars will only fit 1 or 2 columns of flags.

Customizing your Flag Counter

3.  Copy the HTML embed code

Grabbing HTML Embed code for Flag counter

4.  Go to Appearance > Widgets in your blog dashboard

5.  Click on the desired Sidebar to expand (so you can add the widgets)

Please note: In new blogs sidebars in your dashboard are empty and adding widgets automatically removes the default Edublogs widgets

Expand your sidebar area

5.  Add a text widget to the desired sidebar by dragging it from the Available Widgets or Inactive Widgets areas on the left into the Sidebar area on the right.

Adding a text widget to your sidebar

6.  The widget will automatically open — just add the HTML code from Flag Counter, click Save and then Close.

Adding HTML code to the text widget

7.  You should now see your Flag Counters in your blog sidebar and the flags will start appearing after 24 hours.

Feedjit Live Traffic

Feedjit Live Traffic Feed displays visitors to your blog in real time and includes:

  • Which city and country your visitors are in
  • Which website they arrived from, if any
  • Which page they visited on your website
  • Which external link they clicked to leave your site, if any

Your traffic feed is updated as each visitor arrives on your site. This update occurs before it loads so each of your visitors can see their own location displayed.

Clicking on the Feedjit Live Traffic counter takes you to your Live traffic page which provides more detailed information including the countries associated with web visitors’ IP addresses, the web browser, computer operating system, and referring website.

See it in action on Technology in Our Classroom!

Example of Feedjit Live Traffic widget

Here’s how to add a Feedjit Live Traffic Widget:

1.  Go to Feedjit Live Traffic Feed

2.  Click on Click here to Customize It! below Live Traffic Feed

3.  Choose your color scheme and width (ideal size for most sidebars is less than 170)

Customize Live Traffic Widget

4.  Once finished customizing, copy the HTML embed code

Copying Live Traffic Feed HTML code

5.  Go to Appearance > Widgets in your blog dashboard

6.  Click on the desired Sidebar to expand (so you can add the widgets)

7.  Add a text widget to the desired sidebar by dragging it from the Available Widgets into the Sidebar area on the right.

8.  The widget will automatically open — just add the HTML code from Live Traffic Feed, click Save and then Close.

9.  You should now see your Live Traffic Feed in your blog sidebar and visitor data will immediately start appearing.

Feedjit Live Traffic Map

Feedjit Live Traffic Map displays real-time visitor tracking by showing the geographic locations of the last 100 visitors to your blog.

If you move your mouse over any point on the map the city and country for that visitor will be displayed.

Displaying city and country on a Feedjit map

Clicking on the Feedjit Live Traffic Map takes you to your Live Traffic Map page which provides more detailed information.

See it in action on Technology in Our Classroom!

Feedjit detailed live feed map

Here’s how to add a Feedjit Live Traffic Widget:

1.  Go to Feedjit Live Traffic Map

2.  Click on Click here to Customize It! below Live Traffic Map

3.  Choose your color scheme and width (ideal size for most sidebars is less than 170)

Customizing your Feedjit Map

4.  Once finished customizing, copy the HTML embed code

Grab embed code for Feedjit Map

5.  Go to Appearance > Widgets in your blog dashboard

6.  Click on the desired Sidebar to expand (so you can add the widgets)

7.  Add a text widget to the desired sidebar by dragging it from the Available Widgets into the Sidebar area on the right.

8.  The widget will automatically open — just add the HTML code from Live Traffic Map, click Save and then Close.

9.  You should now see your Live Traffic Map in your blog sidebar and visitor data will immediately start appearing.

Step 3: Add a visitor tracking tool to your sidebar

Add a visitor tracking widget to your sidebar.  You can select from any (or all) of the tools listed above or look for an alternative visitor tracking tool.

Remember to leave a comment with a link to your blog so we can drop past to check it out your new visitor tracking widget and add our location to your widget :)

Step 4: Complete the extension activity (if you have time)

Write a post to review top tracking widgets – discuss some of the best widgets, what each will do and why you would recommend them.

And remember to leave a comment with a link to your post so we can drop past to check it out!  We like to include these links to your posts in our weekly reviews!

Here is where you find the other activities from this series:

Thanks to everyone who is participating in the 30 Days to Get Started Blogging with your students!

And if you missed out, it is never too late to work through the challenges at your own pace!

You can always form your own team with other educators and work together!

  1. Student Blogging Activity 1 (Beginner): Setting Up Your Class Blog
  2. Student Blogging Activity 2 (Beginner): Setting Up Rules & Guidelines
  3. Student Blogging Activity 3 (Beginner) – Teaching Quality Commenting
  4. Student Blogging Activity 4 (Beginner) – Helping Parents Connect with your Class Blog
  5. Student Blogging Activity 5 (Beginner): Add Students To Your Class Blog So They Can Write Posts
  6. Student Blogging Activity 6 (Beginner): Add A Visitor Tracking Widget To Your Blog Sidebar
  7. Student Blogging Activity 7 (Beginner): Set up your student blogs
  8. Student Blogging Activity 8 (Beginners): Add your student blogs to your blogroll
  9. Student Blogging Activity 9 (Beginners): Add Your Student Blogs To A Folder In Google Reader

9 thoughts on “Student Blogging Activity 6 (Beginner): Add A Visitor Tracking Widget To Your Blog Sidebar

    • Hi Theresa, I’ve dropped past your blog so you’ll have a flag and feed from where I am based. I love your Glogster on commenting! It really grabs your attentions so I’m hoping by doing so the students will remember the guidelines more!

    • Hi Tracy, Your ClustrMaps looks really good and I’ve added a dot to it for where I am based. I’ve seen a lot of teachers use their ClustrMaps as an opportunity for students to learn more about the countries and locations where people are visiting them from. Some even have large World Maps on their class wall where they add notes. Although the coolest one I’ve seen was a ClustrMap cake to celebrate a large number of visitors.

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