Sophisticated digital marketing efforts and promotional tools are playing a more important role in advertising and SEO efforts than ever before. Finding ways to make it easier to understand Google Analytics can ensure that business and organization owners are better able to promote themselves. Lacking insight into the latest marketing methods could prove to be a liability that no business owners can afford to overlook.

Search engine optimization, pay per click advertising methods and other resources that are designed to increase inbound site traffic may be far harder to utilize for those who are struggling to understand the results. A firm grasp of the analytical tools used by major search engines can help to ensure businesses can adjust their marketing strategies more quickly. Possessing a clear picture of how search engine ranking work offers some potential benefits.

Google Analytics offers business owners beneficial information for decision-making, however, many struggle to understand how to read the data.  Upon reviewing the data, the biggest obstacle is deciphering it into business logic in order to direct marketing efforts.

Smaller operations, new start-ups, and businesses that may lack the resources needed to maintain a larger staff may help by seeking outside assistance. Working with the right firm, service or professional offers numerous educational opportunities. A little support can go a very long way when it comes to crafting and implementing a more efficient marketing strategy.

Being able to digest statistical and analytical information with greater ease and success can be a major concern. Lacking the insight needed to utilize marketing tools more effectively can lead to many potentially serious problems or costly issues. Seeking the assistance of a qualified professional or working with the right service provider will ensure such concerns are less likely to create complications.

Start with Objectives. Before you even open your Google Analytics account, what are you trying to accomplish with your website?  Are you trying to get more traffic to the site, or convert that traffic into leads or paying customers?  Are you running ad campaigns and trying to determine the ROI of the ad spend?

Google Analytics can help you answer these, and many more, questions.

Tracking Web Traffic

The Audience section tells you basic information on who the web visitors are.  Simple demographics such as age and gender.  You may want to check out the Interests tab before you advertise to make sure you are targeting the best audience.  In this example, it would be a good idea to target men between the ages of 18-35 who are sports-minded.

Google Analytics Audience > Affinity

If your objective is to know how much website traffic your site is getting each month, use Audience > Overview.  Here you can set your date range and determine how many sessions, or website visits, your site has received within that period of time. The chart shows how many of those visitors are new vs. returning.

Google Analytics Audience > Overview

You can also compare the results against another time period.  I find this very helpful to know if our SEO and advertising efforts are bringing more site traffic.  You can compare the results to the previous month, year, or custom dates.  I like to compare to the previous year if the business sales fluctuate by month, this way I have a truer picture of our efforts.  For increasing website traffic month over month, then comparing to the previous period is very helpful.

Google Analytics Audience compared to previous period

How did you get that traffic

In the Acquisition section, you can find out where the traffic came from.  In this example, this site gets almost all of it’s traffic from organic searches, such as on Google or Bing.  Direct is when someone knows your website URL and types it into a browser to access your site.  Referral is traffic coming from another website, such as a press release or another site linked to yours.  Social is from any social media site.

Tracking where the website traffic came from

To really determine where the traffic came from, you can go deeper.  Acquisition > All Traffic > Source/Medium will tell you exactly which search engine is sending traffic your way.  This can help direct your ad spend on various ad accounts.

Google Analytics traffic source

What did the site traffic do

Which pages did the web visitor land on while clicking around your site?  The ‘/’ represents your homepage.  On this site, the Menu page actually had more traffic than the homepage.  Tip: Notice how much traffic you get on your About page.  This is one of the most underutilized and overlooked pages on a site yet typically lands in the top 5 pages for all the web traffic on a site.

To access, go to the Behavior section.

Google Analytics site behavior

Tracking Leads

If you are tracking your site for lead generation, then Goal Conversions would be valuable.  There are several ways to track goals, for example, tracking a Thank You page to a form,
Google Analytics Goal Conversions

If you need help driving traffic to your site, determining your ROI for advertising, or increasing goal conversions, request a quote today.  Our professional marketing team understands now to move the needle on your Google Analytics account.