The Metrics – What To Look At In Google Analytics?
what to do/look at/click on/not touch in Google Analytics
What metrics should you be looking at in Google Analytics?
If you’re a fully-functioning member of the digital business world then you’ve probably got a website. Having a website is an awesome way to get your message out there to a huge array of people, with platforms like social media able to boost your reach even further. But how do you know if anyone’s actually visiting your website? What metrics should you look at?
This is where Google Analytics can help. GA is your personal investigative genius, on hand to help you keep track of your business activities, understand what’s working and what isn’t, and learn more about the people that matter most to your success – your customers. Put simply, it’s free online software that gives you data about the people who use your website.
Data might seem daunting but with it you can really push the performance of your site and therefore your profit.
Now that we’ve clarified that Google Analytics is your business’s best friend, it’s time to talk about how to get the most out of it. There are tons (some might say a metric ton) of different thing you can look at in GA, and it’s easy to fall down the rabbit hole of metrics and graphs, only to resurface three hours later and wonder what happened. Did you take the red or the blue pill?
That’s why we’ve rounded up the key metrics you should start with on your foray into analytics:
1. New/unique visitor conversion
Depending on whether it’s their first time on your site or not, online visitors can behave differently. Understanding how new visitors behave can help you to break down your conversion rates and understand what people are driven to do when they visit your website for the first time. Online users like an easy life; prioritise usability and make your calls to action (CTAs) such as ‘Improve your life today, click here’ as clear as possible.
2. Incoming traffic sources
Understanding where your web traffic comes from can help you determine where to focus your digital marketing efforts for maximum effect. You may find that different types of traffic are more likely to convert, so you can plan how to make the most of this. When it comes to traffic, look for three different types:
- Direct visitors – these people typed your URL into the search bar.
- Search visitors – these people clicked on your site based on a search query they entered.
- Referral visitors – these people came from a different website that had linked to you, such as a blog.
3. Bounce rate
Bounce rate tracks how many people hit your site and then leave straight away, without interacting or exploring any further. As a simplified overview – high bounce rate (close to 100%) = bad.
A high bounce rate can mean that your landing pages aren’t optimised for conversion, are difficult to navigate, or that visitors aren’t getting the information they were expecting. If your web pages have a high bounce rate, then it can point you in the direction of things to improve.
4. Average session duration
This metric tells you the average length of time someone spends on your website, which can indicate whether or not your site is providing useful, relevant information. The more relevant the content, the more time someone will spend reading in enjoying it – and the longer the session will be.
Look at the correlation between session time and conversions – if people are spending a long time on a page but then not interacting, it may be that the content is confusing, or the next step isn’t clear. Optimise your CTAs and see how it affects your average session duration.
5. Page views
Page views are defined as the number of pages people view on your website. As a rule, more is better. After all, you probably want people to explore as many pages of your website as possible to find all of your awesome content. If the amount of page views per session is low, look to optimise your CTAs and review your meta data for keyword relevancy.
Google Analytics offers a ton of information to business owners looking to understand more about their online presence, and these are just a few of the metrics you can explore.
Want to know more? Well, you’re in luck. Our Intro to Google Analytics course gives you the lowdown on the tools and techniques you need to use GA to your advantage – whether it’s understanding how your customers interact with you or finding out if you’re hitting your goals.
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