You are in digital marketing and perhaps you’ve proficiency in SEO, social media or even pay-per-click advertising. But, assuming that you know ‘enough’ is something you need to change in yourself if you want to keep yourself well-rounded. In this ever-evolving digital world, there is a need to make sure that your digital marketing efforts are not only driving audience engagement and sales but tracking results as well, so that you can measure and improve. And that brings us to a powerful tool called Google Analytics.
Being a digital marketing expert with an extensive experience marketing high-end clients, I’ve found Google Analytics to be a valuable tool for tracking traffic and uncovering the fresh insights. So, if leveraged correctly, Google Analytics provides with pretty much everything needed to optimize your marketing efforts.
Through Google Analytics, it becomes easier to assess the effectiveness of current marketing strategy and analyze when it’s time to make a shift.
Before we dive into key factors that matter the most in digital marketing, I want you to first know about the tool “Google Analytics.”
What is Google Analytics?
Google Analytics – the market leader, is a free and extremely accurate tool not only for the audience analysis for your website, but also for all your digital marketing efforts.
No matter whether you work for a big or small brand, or what brand promotion ideas you’ve, with the help of analytics you can be a good decision maker and make those promotional campaigns successful.
Google Analytics does not just provide the statistics that analyze the behavior of visitors to your site but it measures the impact of your actions as well. This tool is constantly updated by Google to improve its functionality. Therefore, it is ideal to follow the results of your website and actions that you put in place.
1. Traffic metrics
Any business having a functional website will want to know what the performance is in terms of traffic. In theory, the higher the traffic, the better your chances of getting sales online or through other distribution channels. Google Analytics gives you the statistics of goodwill on your site, for a given period (in hours, days, weeks or months):
- Number of sessions
- Number of unique visitors
- Average number of pages visited by the user
- Average duration of a session
- Percentage of new sessions vs. people coming back
- Bounce rate
However, it doesn’t provide any idea about the number of likes and shares on your social media profile or page. But, this particular aspect is not enough to outweigh the other eminent benefits of Google Analytics. The tool is user-friendly and easy to manipulate. It allows to compare data between two time periods. All you need to do is select the ‘compare to past’ checkbox and then use the controls to set the date range.
2. Traffic composition
If you want to invest in AdWords campaigns, re-marketing banners, or even a traditional marketing approach (radio, TV, print), it’s important to know where your current or potential customers are coming from. Google Analytics is a tool where you can really dig deeper into user statistics of your site such as:
- Geographical origin (country, city, continent, sub-continent)
- Frequency on the site
Knowing your user statistics is the best way to tailor your site, content and images as per their interests and preferences. This will help you in crafting website content and images that resonate with your audience.
3. Traffic source
We can very well understand who visits our site, but still there is a need to know how they found you beforehand. Here again, Google Analytics allows you to understand the performance of different marketing channels to evaluate which marketing efforts are working. Here are some channels you can review in Google Analytics:
- Organic search
- Direct traffic
- Social media
- Referral traffic, from third-party sites
- Email and newsletters
- Paid campaigns (AdWords)
Analyzing the different traffic channels will help you know which channel drives the largest traffic to your site. Below is a screenshot, which appears when I click overview tab under Acquisition section. It shows the top marketing channels that drove traffic to my website during a chosen time period.
For the best results, you can pair Google Webmaster Tools with your Google Analytics account.
4. Traffic behavior
You may know who is on your site and for how long. But, are you able to understand the way they interact with your site? With Google Analytics, you can dig to find out more about which pages on your website are most popular or which pages seem to discourage user. It gives an insight into all the pages, including blog posts, landing pages and exit pages wherein can simply breakdown the data by:
- Unique Pageviews
- Average Time on Page
- Bounce Rate
- Page Value
This way you can find which pages are most viewed by your audience. And then you can reevaluate your web development or marketing strategy accordingly to ensure that the traffic drives to those pages. Google Analytics also guides during a possible redesign and in your advertising placement, building on your current strengths.
5. Traffic conversions
With Google Analytics, it is easy to analyze the conversion path that visitors are following. You can move further in this with conversion rate testing for various elements on your pages like:
- Page layouts
- Images position
This way you can receive the insights that can be used to optimize your conversion funnel. And then you can build corrective strategies to ensure there is no weak link left behind where the users are dropping off, resulting in the decrease in conversion rates.
Pro tip: Get real-time data
Google Analytics has a feature that let users get real-time data on their site. This feature is especially helpful when launching a product, or making adjustments on your site like new promotion, new campaign pointing to a dedicated page, dissemination of a press release or special initiative on social media, etc.
Google Analytics real-time feature gives you practical results with a reading on the origin of the traffic, the keywords used and the content consumed on your site. Through real-time data, you can also create automated reports, shortcuts to your favorite indicators, create alerts or set various conversion goals. The possibilities are great, it is enough to target what you want to measure considering your business reality, and prioritize what is most important.
Be aware that Google Analytics will not give you a customized analysis. It is thus necessary to make an effort of interpretation to understand the behavior of Internet users and figures obtained. In-depth analysis and a good statistics knowledge will help you in powering your digital marketing efforts.
If you have a quest of knowing more then get in touch with me, I would be glad to answer your queries.