Understanding Google Analytics Data
You’re probably using Google Analytics to track visitors to your website, but are you getting the most out of the information it can give you?
There are simply thousands of ways to carve up the vast amount of data it can give you, but here are the reports that I find most beneficial at a top level and come back to again and again throughout my work.
This shows you your percentage of mobile traffic, which is important for your site optimisation as well as targeting ads.
The demographic is also important so that you can monitor your target audience.
Report: All Traffic > Source / Medium
The best thing you can do with your traffic is add tracking parameters to the end. This will signal to google where the traffic has come from and allow you to analyse and compare results. I’ve written a blog about setting this up here.
If you are using these parameters the source/medium report will show you results per marketing activity. Add a ‘secondary dimension’ of campaign to get even more granular.
Report: All Traffic > Channels
Google will automatically segment your traffic by marketing channel even if you don’t use tracking parameters, so this report will give you a very top level view of what it/isn’t working.
Report: Site Content > All pages
What pages are your visitors spending the most time on or bouncing off quickly from? Knowing this will help you prioritise your optimisation strategy and also identify any problems on site.
Report: Site Content > Landing pages
Where do people enter you site? Knowing that will make sure you maximise what they are seeing on those pages. This is especially useful when broken into marketing channel.
Report: Site speed
If your website is slow it will negatively affect your search engine optimisation, so it is worth checking in on this every now and again.
Now, in terms of the metrics shown to you within each report, these are what to look out for:
- Users – Number of people.
- New users – People who haven’t visited your site before. Remember that returning visitors are more likely to convert, but some marketing activity you will want new visitors for, so whether this should be high or low is dependent on the circumstances.
- Sessions – Separate visits to your site. This will be more than the number of users because of returning visitors.
- Pageviews – How many times a page has been viewed by users.
- Avg. Time on Page – The longer the better.
- Pages/session – More pages means more engagement, which is a good thing.
- Bounce Rate – This is whether someone left the page again without engaging at all. The lower the number, the better.
- Avg. session duration – Longer visits mean more engaged visitors.
Finally check out my recent Instagram post about how to create Google Analytics segments, which will allow you to view all reports for just one section of your traffic – @digitalmarketingmama.
If you have any questions on making the most of Google Analytics please get in touch on Instagram or via my website. I would love to help!