Numbers: they’re everywhere. It’s important to know the data behind your efforts – how many people are visiting your site, how many of them are dropping off, where they go, what they see and do… The inferences you can make off of the data are essentially limitless. But where do you even begin?
The world of Google Analytics can be a daunting one, trust me, I know! When I first came to Chapter, I hadn’t even glanced at an Analytics page. Nowadays, I’m able to not only find and present the numbers, but I can also connect the dots to tell stories and find where things might not be adding up, like bot attacks and mystery traffic.
Along the way on our Crash Course on Google Analytics series, we’ll break down the ways you can measure various data on your website. Disclaimer: we’re not data scientists! We love to tell stories, and the numbers help us do that, but we’re not experts. You don’t have to be either.
If this ends up being all Greek to you, get in touch with us for a chat. We can see if we can help you iron out your content and the analytics behind it (no strings attached)!
Let’s dive in…
Digital Marketing: The numbers behind the content
Digital marketing is the cornerstone of what we do at Made by Chapter, and the numbers behind it drive how we use it. If we notice campaigns or certain keywords aren’t performing well, we’ll pivot our strategy to use less of them. We love experimenting to see what we can do.
This would all be difficult without the help of Google Analytics. It tracks the data and breaks it off into sections that are easy to understand and find. With the numbers, we can build reports and talk to each other and our clients confidently about how things are performing.
That confidence takes a bit of effort, but we’ll walk you through the important stuff!
How to set up Google Analytics (GA)
Step 1: Time to set it up. Google makes it easy to start your account and choose the property you want (we suggest a UA property). From there, you’ll follow the instructions in their video to add the tracking code to your website. You’re all set!
Once you have it all set up, you can then choose who has access to view the analytics, any filters or views you want to add (like not counting the IP addresses of your team members who visit your site 20 times a day), and set up Goals, which we’ll look into a bit later on. There’s so much you can do on Google Analytics, so take some time to check it all out. We’ll wait here for you…
The 101 on Website Performance
On your GA home page, you can see if any users are active right now and an overview of users, sessions, bounce rate, and session duration over the last 7 days. Scroll down a bit to see where you acquired users over the last 7 days by traffic channel, source/medium, and referrals. A bit further down you have active user trends and cohort analysis as well as when users visit, where they are in the world, and what their devices are. Finally, at the bottom of the page, the most popular pages that users visit and your goal performance.
Here are some of the website performance insights we use and where to find them:
What we use the most
What the show you
Where users are in the world.
Where users are going on your site.
Which channels, source/mediums and referrals your users are coming from.
If you're using UTM campaigns in your marketing, they will be tracked here.
Where the users land and go from there (including where they drop off).
Landing and exit pages and a great view of which of your pages are receiving the highest views, how much time on avg. is spent there, and your bounce rate.
If you have events set up, this is where they're tracked.
Google Analytics is full of fun information to find, so don’t be afraid to click around and discover something new. You can set up more in-depth views like your users’ interests, user explorer, and so much more. Finding something new is one of my favourite parts of exploring Google Analytics as it adds a new layer of richness and detail to reports.
Sales & Conversions
On our Google Analytics at Chapter, we have a Goal set up under Conversions to track how many people visit our contact page. Because we love telling people’s stories, this is a big part of why we do what we do. Tracking how many people complete this goal is important to us and gives us a way to see if we’re hitting our targets. We know, as a business, it’s important for you to know how many users are falling into your sales funnel and how many are completing it. It’s easy to see that on GA!
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Setting up goals can be simple and gives you an overview of how many users have completed the goal, its value (if assigned one), the conversion rate, abandonment rate, and more. It’s interesting to see week-by-week how users are interacting with this goal. Another way to look into this is through your Behaviour Flow. Here, you can see where users land, where they, and where they drop off.
We know this is just the tip of the iceberg and there’s so much more to learn and explore in Google Analytics. Hopefully, this gave you an overview to set yourself up and have the map to navigate around.
Next, we’ll be looking a bit more in-depth on how to measure Social Media & Blog content on Google Analytics. Stay tuned!
If you’re finding this all a bit too much, contact us for a no-strings-attached chat about how we can help with your content and tracking.