A critical tool for any website is Google Analytics. Good analytics can capture all types of data on your website including top performing pages, where your traffic is coming from, what your conversion rate is for an e-commerce product page, and many other things. This article will tell you some of the reasons why you need Google Analytics and some information on how to get it setup.
1. You can see how people find your website.
There are over 1 billion websites online right now. Each of them is vying for attention in the overcrowded world of the internet. For your website to do its job – whatever that might be – people have to be able to find it.
Google Analytics has an entire section, Acquisition, devoted to providing you with information on how the visitors to your website found you. Google tracks how many people land on your website after clicking on a link in search results (organic results), how many people come from links shared on social media, from other websites, from paid ads, and by typing your website directly into search.
2. You can track what people do when they’re on your website.
Getting people to your website is the first big hurdle you face, but making sure they stick around and come back is just as important. Google Analytics tracks that information too.
The Behavior section in Google Analytics provides information on which pages people often come to first on your website, what pages they click through to next (if any), and how long they spend on your website.
This information will help you understand which parts of your website are successfully getting traction and determine if you need to rework the design or improve your content to keep people around longer.
3. You can find the most popular pages on your website.
Pretty much every website will have some pages that get more traffic than others. And you’ll also have pages that keep people on the site or achieve conversions more than others.
If you have content that’s ranking high or getting shared a lot that brings a disproportionate amount of your traffic, Google Analytics will help you identify it. Just as importantly, if some pages do particularly well at converting visitors to email subscribers or customers, Google Analytics helps you identify those as well. The best SEO companies on the market will also study these conversions and adjust their work accordingly.
When you can pinpoint the pages that are working the best for your various goals, you can analyze why they work and shape a strategy for your website moving forward based on past successes. Our talented SEO professionals can help you with a growth strategy for your business. SEO work takes time to garnish 1st page Google rankings. Remember, SEO is a marathon, not a sprint when it comes to getting all your keywords ranked well.
4. It helps you track conversions.
Different websites will have different actions they most want visitors to take. You can set up conversion tracking in Google Analytics for your website based on the actions you most want visitors to take, such as filling out a form, signing up for your email list, or making a purchase.
For most websites, this data will be the most important measure of whether your website’s doing its main job. Google Analytics will help you gauge what’s working on your website to achieve conversions and why.
Get Started with Google Analytics
To get started, you only have to set up an account with Google Analytics, add your website as a property, and add the tracking code provided to the pages on your website. That’s a simple copy-and-paste job, and with WordPress sites you have a couple of installation options that are potentially even easier than copy and pasting the tracking code on each page.
Why you need Google Analytics
Do you have a blog? Do you have a static website? If the answer is yes, whether they are for personal or business use, then you need Google Analytics. Through the use of Google Analytics, you can shape a better online marketing strategy. Here are just a few of the many questions about your website that you can answer using Google Analytics.
- How many people visit my website?
- Where do my visitors live?
- Do I need a mobile-friendly website?
- What websites send traffic to my website?
- What marketing tactics drive the most traffic to my website?
- Which pages on my website are the most popular?
- How many visitors have I converted into leads or customers?
- Where did my converting visitors come from and go on my website?
- How can I improve my website’s speed?
- What blog content do my visitors like the most?
Start collecting Analytics
To start collecting basic data from a website:
- Create or sign in to your Analytics account:
- Go to google.com/analytics
- Do one of the following:
- To create an account, click Start for free.
- To sign in to your account, Click Sign in to Analytics.
- Set up a property in your Analytics account. A property represents your website or app, and is the collection point in Analytics for the data from your site or app.
- Set up a reporting view in your property. Views let you create filtered perspectives of your data; for example, all data except from your company’s internal IP addresses, or all data associated with a specific sales region.
- Follow the instructions to add the tracking code to your website so you can collect data in your Analytics property.
Four steps in Google Analytics that will help you gain a clear, comprehensive picture of your business.
Modify your tracking code to collect additional data such as:
- User interactions with links, buttons, video controls, and other dynamic elements of your site or app. Learn more about event tracking.
- E-commerce activity like user engagement with product lists and internal promotions, and how successfully users moved through your purchase funnel and checkout process. Learn more about ecommerce and enhanced-ecommerce data collection and reporting.
Download the Analytics app
Once you have installed the tracking code on your site or app, and have configured your Analytics account, download the Analytics app from Google Play so you can take Analytics reporting with you anywhere (well, anywhere you have a connection). This app can be a great tool for technical SEO monitoring.
Learn more about the Analytics app
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