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An introduction to Google Analytics [Part 1]

30th March 2016

Using analytics in your business is essential if you want to monitor and target your audience, but so many people either don’t use them, or use them incorrectly. We wanted to highlight the best practices for utilising your analytics and give you hints and tips on when, how and why you should be incorporating analytics into your business practice.

Why should you be using analytics?

As a business, it is key that you have a good clear understanding of your customer.

Who are they?

Where do they come from?

What do they want to read?

How long do they stay on your site and what have they searched to get there?

Without this information, how else will you be able to tailor your content to suit and retain them?

By using analytics not only can you measure and track these results, you can also get a very clear picture of the whole customer journey. You can then see how you can convert future visitors into customers. By creating clear goals through your analytics you will be able to understand how your visitors and your customers use your site. And therefore, you can build on that and really utilise that information to gain more and more visitors and customers to your site.

Google analytics are the best, and easiest way to access this information. They are free to use, and just requires you to sign up and register at www.google.com/analytics. You will then need to add a code to each page of your website, and depending on what platform you use this is simple to do. You may need to ask your web builder if you aren’t confident in doing this yourself, but Google answers your questions in a straightforward manner if you feel you are tech savvy enough to give it a go.

So what kind of questions can Google analytics answer for you?

Well, what questions do you want to ask? What do you need to know? Google can help you discover…

  • How many people visit my website?
  • Where do my visitors live?
  • Do I need a mobile-friendly website?
  • What websites send traffic to my website?
  • What marketing tactics drive the most traffic to my website?
  • Which pages on my website are the most popular?
  • How many visitors have I converted into leads or customers?
  • Where did my converting visitors come from and go on my website?
  • How can I improve my website's speed?
  • What blog content do my visitors like the most?

And so much more...!

Google allows up to 100 Google Analytics accounts under one google account, up to 50 properties (websites) under one Google Analytics account, and up to 25 views per property – however it is more than likely that you will just need the one!

Once you have set up your Google account and added your code into each and every page of your website (this is fundamental as you will be able to track your customer journey throughout your site), you can start to add goals. Goals are useful if you want to send a thank you email to a customer after subscribing to your newsletter for example. It means you can not only monitor your goals, but also personalise your service to your visitor. You can add up to 20 goals per account, and it is a simple process to follow once you have a clear idea of what goals you want to set up. You can however leave this part and set up goals once you have familiarised yourself with analytics a bit further, to see how you want the functionality to work later on down the line.

Something else to consider while you are setting up your account is if you have a search facility on your website. If you do, it is worth switching on your Site Search Settings which can be found in your Admin page of your analytics. By having this facility on, you can see what your visitors are searching for within your website. Again, this is crucial when looking at your customer journey and what they want to find.

Setting up your Google analytics account correctly may take some time and effort, but it is well worth putting this effort in the beginning as you will then be able to monitor everything that will help you grow your business.

 

Next time we will talk through how to view your analytics.