Google Analytics has the ability to give users valuable insights into the performance of their digital space. However, without much experience in data analytics, brand managers often struggle to understand the statistics and cannot use this information to their advantage. The knowledge of certain basic tools can go a long way in helping you understand how customers interact with your website. Instead of focusing on the tools, it is helpful to focus on what you’re trying to get out of the data. If it is one of the below, Google Analytics has the answers you need.
1. Targeted Advertising
AdWords and Internet advertising can seem like a costly proposition if you’re not sure of whom to target. The Audience tool gives you information about your users. In particular, the Demographics, Interests and Geo sections can tell you where your users are from and what matters to them. On the basis of this data, you can determine your likeliest customers, and specify that your ads reach out only to them. This can significantly reduce your cost-per-click.
If you use AdWords, you can also measure the performance of your ads using the Acquisition tool and further minimize your costs by getting rid of ineffective campaigns.
2. Identify Problem Areas on Your Website
Google Analytics reports a metric called “bounce rate”. Bounce rate is a session in which only one page was viewed (the landing page) and the visitor exited your site without exploring any other page. A high bounce rate for certain pages can alert you about the possible issues with it. Perhaps the visitor did not find the information they expected on the page, or the page layout was confusing and the content too overwhelming. This metric can alert you about the pages that need improvements. You will find this metric throughout your website data to measure different tools.
Another helpful measure is Site Speed. It gives information about how much time a page on your site takes to load. A high Page Load Time can be infuriating for visitors and could be the reason behind a high bounce rate or non-completion of goals. Perhaps the content size on this page can be reduced to allow a smoother experience for your users.
3. What to Highlight on Your Website
Often brands struggle to understand what is most important for their users and should be emphasized on the website. Just how GA can help you pinpoint problematic areas, it can also tell you which pages and products are most viewed.
The eCommerce tab gives data about your product offering, including which are the most purchased. These products should be featured on your homepage and should be placed at the top of your listings page.
The “site-search” tab gives you data about what is most searched on your site. If the searched items are products, feature them on your homepage. If they are general landing pages, increase activity on these pages to enhance performance on these pages. A high number of “Visits With Site Search” can also indicate a high level of engagement and familiarity of visitors with your brand.
4. Influence How Visitors Reach Your Website
GA gives you data about the channels, devices, browsers and OS from which your site has been accessed. You can use this data to understand what’s working for your website and focus on improving this. For example, if social channels are generating traffic for your website, you can increase activity on your account and/or engage influencers in blogging about your website. Most brands aim to increase organic traffic, that is, the traffic that comes in from search engines. If this is low for your brand, it is crucial that you rethink the content on your site and incorporate relevant keywords.
If you’re wondering whether you need a mobile site, the devices used data can help you make the decision. If mobiles and tablets are used often by your users to access the website, a mobile version of your website can enhance their experience on your site.
Google Analytics can give you cost-effective insights into your brand’s online performance and can alert you to possible issues with it. The full potential of Google Analytics will be realised once you use the data to optimise the experience of each and every individual that visits your website, but for now, this can be a great starting point.