Google Analytics: Don’t Overlook this Free, Relevant Tool

If you have a website, hopefully you are already aware of Google Analytics, a free tool that can be used to track several elements related to your website’s traffic. It is imperative to regularly review your site’s performance, but navigating through and understanding all of the details provided by Google Analytics can be overwhelming. These are the areas we consider most important to review.

  1. Compare year-to-year data: Provides trending information on a monthly and annual basis. The graph shows data regarding traffic patterns, spikes during the day, highest traffic performing days, etc.
  2. Compare month-to-month: Provides a quick snap shot of how the site is performing from one month to the next. This is such a quick but important review. During a recent analytics review for one of our clients, we uncovered a precipitous drop in traffic from the previous month and were able to quickly address the situation and recover.
  3. Users: Review unique visitors, total visitors, new and returning users, and total page views per session.
  4. Bounce Rate: Review bounce rate and time on site. A bounce rate over 60 percent is alarming, and may result from a content issue, broken links, poor call to actions, etc. However, when mobile bounce rates are higher and time on site is less, this is often a sign of customers just looking for a phone number.
  5. Organic Traffic: Organic traffic is when a user finds your site through an Internet search (ex: Google, Bing, etc). We always review organic keywords and organic traffic. Often times these key performance indicators provide insight on how our SEO work is progressing.
  6. Direct Traffic: Through effective traditional marketing efforts, we grow brand recognition, which drives users to type in your URL directly. Direct traffic results shows that these efforts are working.
  7. Mobile: Mobile search is very important for obvious reasons, but we also review what operations platform consumers are utilizing. Over the course of the past year it’s amazing how much android technology has gained on IOS.
  8. Location: City and state searches help us pinpoint PPC opportunities and ensure that what we are currently working on is delivering the results we desire in our key markets.
  9. Referral Traffic: Referral traffic shows which external sites are driving traffic to your website. This could be in the form of an online press release, directory, social media platform, or email marketing campaign. Referral traffic shows where our strengths lie, beyond our site, and what marketing efforts/platforms are working well to drive new traffic.
  10. Visitor Flow: Allows us to monitor what page a user entered the site on, what pages they visited, and what page they were on when they exited the site. Very important! This can really pinpoint how effective certain campaigns are and how they have an impact on a page. In addition, we can also locate where we are losing visitors and what we can do to improve those pages.
  11. Page Traffic: We’re able to see which pages of the site users are visiting. This tells us if our marketing efforts are working or if we need to make adjustments to boost traffic to a specific product or service offering.

Hopefully this will help you navigate and understand your Google Analytics and encourage frequent review. If you are struggling with analytics, please give us a call. We are happy to answer your questions, provide training or even take on the responsibility of continuous monitoring for your site.