Getting started with Google Analytics

Your brand spanking, shiny new website has just been signed off and gone Live!  What next?  Let me suggest that if you do not already have a Google account, you set one up and immediately get some Google Analytics on your site.   Setting up a Google account is so easy, just go to the home page, click the top right hand corner where it says sign in and then look for Create an Account.  As soon as your account is live, look for try something new – or go to Google analytics.

Next, sign up for your analytic account and verify your website.  Google will give you a small piece of javascript which is simply copied and pasted into your website code just before the end of the body tag – and you’re done.  Now let’s see what you can measure.

The dashboard will measure activity over the last month (roughly speaking) giving you an immediate picture of the number of visitors, unique visitors, new visitors, repeat visitors, bounce rate, page views, region the visitor came from etc

Click into these figures to drill deeper into the data, I like to know where abouts in the world visitors are coming from to see if it is worth expanding our marketing efforts in any particular country or region.  The traffic sources are crucial – is your offline advertising driving the traffic, networking bringing in direct traffic or are you being found on the search engines?

Chances are you will have a mix of traffic sources with the majority of traffic coming through the search engines (read Google).  To analyse how these users found your business on the search engines, drill into the search engine traffic to see which keywords they used.  Expand the report out to see all keywords used and then use the boxes at the bottom of the report and “exclude” your domain or the most common word used to describe your business.  So, for example if your business is known as Le Chalet Mordun and your URL is then exclude mordun and monitor the keyword trends to see what is now reported each month.  Are there words in there that are not applicable to your business, words that describe your core services etc.

Use these findings along with your sales reports to see which traffic is converting into new clients / product sales for your company, what words people are using to discuss / find your business and what is missing – are there key products and services that you would like to be found for but get little traffic for.

Analyse this section of your website over a few months and you can start to put together a picture of how your website is working for your business, what people do whilst on the site and areas for improvement which can then be used as the basis of a Search Engine Optimisation campaign.

Google analytics is an incredibly powerful tool and it’s free – if you need help setting up a new Google analytics account on your website or would like an analytic consultation to get the most out of this tool for your business email me for further information.

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Gail Mullard

Digital Marketing Strategist. Gail makes sure you are positioned expertly online, that your brand speaks to your target audience and that you make the most of digital communications. Loves to talk strategy!

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