I was reading Bruce Clay’s September Newsletter and came across a couple of inaccuracies in Jim Sterne’s web analytics article, specifically this part:
Google won’t report on downloads of files like PDF’s, jpg’s of Flash. You want to know about server error messages? You have to look to the pay-to-play vendors.
Well Google Analytics may not give you those reports out of the box, but it’s not too difficult to put these two solutions together:
1) Tracking files downloaded from your site:
2) Tracking 404 error pages:
This could also be used to create error pages and tracking for 5XX errors.
And on a side note, for those of you who use WordPress, here’s a handy way to create a custom 404 page:
If you have your Google Analytics code in a footer include file, you could create a second include and call it from the 404.php.