Andrew Rizvi, MSc Digital Marketing Management Student
Google Analytics has become one of the most important marketing tools, if not the most necessary. It allows campaigns to be measured in real time, compare data of previous results and offers so much more to a business in terms of metrics.
Being one of the most powerful tools out there for being able to analyse traffic on your website. It gives you a vast amount of information on metrics, that helps monitor what visitors of the website are looking for and how they are getting to the site. This helps companies put all the information together in hope of increasing conversion rates and therefore sales margins.
This is a list of the important data Google Analytics provides for its users:
- Where in the world the visitors are coming from – very important if targeting a specific audience and can be crucial if using STP marketing strategy aimed towards a certain target market
- How visitors found the website – this is very important for determining which of your efforts are paying off. It shows if visitors found the site directly, through advertisement from other outlets and also even search engines. This is helped by a UTM code that you can then attach to a custom URL in order to track a campaign name, medium and source. This enables Google Analytics to help see where searchers came from as well as what campaigns directed to. This can then be implemented into using Google AdWords to take it a step further in order to increase website traffic and conversions.
- Which keywords were used by visitors in the search engines to get to the website – this is very crucial for SEO. This knowledge allows you to see, which keywords people are searching for to get to your site and then be able to use that to incorporate into your chosen website. This enables for companies to use that information to benefit themselves on search engines for brand awareness.
This helps you make decisions based on data. This can then help justify spending more on your advertising, discover where you should be advertising, and even determine what types of content you need to be putting out there.
Google Analytics categorising data into ABCs:
This allows you to use this information to see how your traffic arrives at the site through different marketing channels. That can also be helped by the use of a UTM code that you can attach to a custom URL. This, in turn, helps a business see where it should best place its marketing resources in order to use demographics, Geographic’s and physiographic segmentations to define its target market.
This diagram shows important data right up front — the number of sessions, the bounce rate of those and their conversions for the businesses most effective channels. It also shows how your top channels are performing and which ones would need to be changed to help production.
In Google Analytics each section has an overview page that covers its features such as behaviour flow, site content, site speed, site search and many more. This is also another crucial aspect for a user, as it allows a potential business to go see what can be improved on the site. This will then help a business understand where its potential conversion rates are falling and therefore go about to improve them, to turn them into customers by looking for patterns and usage rates.
It also gives you a bigger insight into the depth of the metrics in the ‘overview’ page on behaviour also:
- Page views — is the total number of pages viewed during the selected time period. The important thing to understand is that a user may visit multiple pages on your site and each of those visits would count as separate.
- Unique page views — This metric only measures the number of unique page views you receive. This will not count a user visiting multiple times, only his original visit.
- Average time on page — It shows the average amount of time users spend viewing a page on your site.
- Bounce rate — The percentage of single page-visits that didn’t lead to another page visit.
- Exit percentage — The exit percentage shows how often users exit from a page or set of pages when they view the page(s). Exit % is often confused with bounce rate, but they’re not the same.
All of the above can drastically help businesses, not just in terms of production of the site and where it needs improvement. But also, the impact changes can have immediate and the percentage of increase can be seen via this tool.
Conversions This allows for tracking of what actions a visitor would take on your site and takes action you care about and converts to a customer. That action could be through filling out a form, completing a purchase, or by simply showing a high level of engagement with your site. This can be very useful in determining what is successful when measuring which traffic sources result in conversions. This is why Google Analytics predeceasing factors are so important, as people who engage regularly are more likely to interact than a first-time visitor. This is why the overall impact of the use of Google Analytics can be so profound to businesses, due to the fact it offers clear metrics to justify reasoning of spending resources to improve customer satisfaction and conversions.
However nothing is perfect.
In order to understand all the intricacies of the Google Analytic tool, you need to learn it. The issue with that is that the information is sometimes hard to find, may be confusing, and overwhelming. If business users traffic is high then that comes with its own complications, as the price is roughly £117,000. This is an astronomical price for potentially a small to medium enterprise, despite this allowing for better in-depth accuracy in metrics. There could be a layer of options between the free and premium for a company or other options entirely like Adobe to find its niche with capital, which in turn will help provide optimum results via conversion rates if used correctly.
Why should a business use it? Google Analytics allows you to track a vast amount of important metrics, covering all aspects, as well as being able to access it on multiple devices. It Also monitors the effectiveness of your online marketing strategies, user experience, device functionality and the to link between other Google products. The statistics show you what is working well and what isn’t. Once you have identified any issues your site may have, you can create a solution. Google Analytics gathers information needed to improve a website and make it the best it can be and therefore help a business reach its potential.