Google Analytics is a marketer’s most valuable resource in understanding how consumers interact with your website, uncovering key demographics and onsite traffic patterns. Whether you have a personal blog or business website, Google Analytics exposes important measurements and information, such as which pages are the most visited, how many visitors converted into leads or customers or how visitors navigated through your website.
Interested in augmenting your website’s effectiveness? Read this Google Analytics report for beginners and find out how you can leverage Google Analytics to improve website content, increase quality traffic and generate conversions.
Google Analytics Glossary
- Pageview – A pageview is calculated each time a tracking code is viewed, including refreshing a page, hitting the back button or opening the same page in a new browser. Regardless if the browser has been cached, recurrent views of a page are counted as a pageview.
- Session – A session is a series of page views over a period of time, including usage data such as Screenviews, Events and e-commerce.
- Pages/Session – Pages/Session is the average number of pages visited during a session. This is an important metric in understanding how engaged users are with your website, conveying how many pages they are navigating through.
- Bounce Rate – Bounce rate is the percentage of single page visits before leaving your website altogether. The lower the bounce rate, the more engaged users are with your website. This metric is useful in interpreting site content effectiveness and can illuminate any complications with your site’s mobile optimization, UX flow or content relevancy.
- Conversions – Conversions are tracked each time a goal has been completed.
- Goal – Based on what is relevant to your website’s objective, you can set goals to measure specific actions a user executes on your website.
- Campaign – Also known as custom campaigns, a campaign is a personalized parameter added to any URL that collects referral traffic information.
- Unique Monthly Views – Unique Monthly Views (or UMV), is a tallied sum of individual viewers to your websites.
Consider the following user behaviors:
1. Website Traffic
Conveniently located on the left side of the Google Analytics menu, the Behavior reports tool granularly analyzes your website’s visitors by isolating keywords, pages and sources. The Overview provides you a consolidated view of all visitor traffic, including total page views, unique page views, average time spent on a page, bounce rate and so on.
The Behavior Flow Report is a visual stream of paths visitors take when navigating through your website.
TIP: You should be monitoring direct, organic and referral traffic (although all traffic is important). Direct traffic identifies which users directly searched for your website’s URL. Organic traffic measures users that find your website by clicking on a search engine result. Lastly, referral traffic documents website traffic that comes from other outlets, such as press placements.
2. Website Content
This segment of the Behavior report offers insight into how users are interacting with your website’s content. At a glance, you can analyze site speed and page performance. This information is useful in assessing the quality and relevancy of your website content, and if need be, adjust content offerings to satisfy audience interest.
3. User Engagement
This behavior report examines two parts: Visit Duration and Page Depth (both useful in top-level user interaction analysis). Visit Duration reveals the amount of Visits and Pageviews each time bracket received.
Page Depth analyzes the aggregate number of pages a user viewed, but this data can be skewed if the website is a blog versus an e-commerce site. In other words, a blog might receive fewer Pageviews because there is less content to navigate through, compared to a vast e-commerce site.
A Tip from an Expert
“I really enjoy taking advantage of layering Google Analytics dimensions on top of AdWords data, in the Google Analytics platform. AdWords provides a ton of rich performance data and Google Analytics can complement this data by measuring user behavior and site interactions after a user has clicked an AdWords ad. For instance, in AdWords non-converting keywords are often turned off because they appear to not be performing. However, through Google Analytics, you can measure the quality of users to see if non-converting keywords are still participating in driving high quality traffic or generating micro KPIs. Essentially, Google Analytics provides a rich lens to look at data from all your marketing efforts enabling you to better understand how all of your efforts are working together within your funnel or business cycle.” – Corey Zalewski, Media Manager at Katana