Monday, 23 January 2017

Google Analytics - a beginner's guide

Google Analytics is a pretty handy tool for online businesses. (And regular businesses who happen to have websites.) Put simply, it tracks all the lovely people who visit your website, and translates the information into a bucketload of graphs, charts (not least of which is the fabulous pie chart. Mmm, pie) and other exciting information, in order to help you get the best out of your website.
Google analytics

What does it do?

Essentially, Google Analytics provides with all the information you could ever want about how people interact with your website. It tells you things such as:

  • How they got to your website – was it by referral from another site, a Google search for a keyword your site ranks well for, or did they blammo your URL straight into the address bar?
  • What they did when they got to your site – did they stay long? Or did they click off almost immediately after arriving (which is indicated by a high “bounce rate”). Which pages did they visit? Are they new visitors or have they been here before?
  • A little more information on the people who visit – such as what country they're from, and even what city. Which browser did they use? Were they on a mobile device? It can even tell you which service provider they use and what operating system they're on. And the screen resolution they used to view your website – can't forget that!
  • In short, Google Analytics gives you lots and lots of information that you can use to your advantage.

  • What can you do with it?

    You can use it to help figure which are your most successful pages (and with a bit of brain work, perhaps you can figure out why). You can use it to analyse the heaviest sources of traffic to your site – so you can then go all out maximising those sources' potential, or you can focus on sadder, lonelier sources that need a little more attention (do you need to put more effort into your keyword research? Or do you need to start plastering guest posts all over the web to get those referral links?).
    Once you've gotten to grips with Google Analytics, you can really start taking advantage of its capabilities.
    You run a business, so you're almost certainly interested in conversions (and if you're not, how are you still in business?). Google Analytics allows you to track and analyse conversions, letting you see what's working and what's not.

    For example, you can set goals that allow you to measure how well your site is doing in certain areas, such as how many people visit your “thanks for registering!” page (so you know how many people are signing up to your email list successfully -- and, more importantly, if there's a problem that's stopping them), or how many people are actually downloading that free ebook you've got slapped up on your site.

    Google Analytics is a vital tool for all businesses with a website. And best of all, it's free, so it'd be well worth your time to take an afternoon to get to grips with it and install it on your site. You'll be tracking conversions and figuring out to increase your sales in no time!









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