If you have done any researchTracking data on your website, You've probably heard of Google Analytics. But what exactly does Google Analytics do?
Google Analyticsis a free website analytics service from Google that gives you insightshow users find and use your website. With Google Analytics you can track the return on investment ("ROI") for your online marketing.
You can filter and sort your visitors using dozens of "dimensions" e.g. B. where they came from, which browser they use etc., and with "metrics" such as.
You can use Google products like your Ads account andsearch console. You can also use tracking codes to tag and track themadvertising,social, PR Campaignor anyArt Campaignon any platform/website.
All you have to do is install a small amount of "tracking code" with a unique tracking ID on every page of your website.*
*Installation varies by website software. If you useself-hosted WordPress, then you just paste it into your theme's header oruse a plugin. If you are using a hosted builder such asWix,Platz,Google Sites,The Popes,Weebly,Jimdo, orSitebuilder– then use the built-in embed option. Not all customization options are available for all platforms (ie.Wix vs. WordPress). You can also use Google Tag Manager to install not only the Google Analytics code but also other tags from Facebook, Twitter and other data sources.
*Just aside - all screenshots in this post are real to show real Google Analytics data in action. They come from several websites I own. The date ranges have each changed and I have blocked all sensitive data.
How does Google Analytics track data?
To get more detailed information about the traffic source, you canUse UTM parameters. These are tags that you add to the end of your URL to provide Google Analytics with more information about your links, e.g. B. which campaign your content comes from and which social channel generates the most revenue.
Was misst Google Analytics?
The building blocks of Google Analytics reports areDimensionsandmetrics.
Dimensionsare the attributes of your data, such as For example, the city the traffic is coming from, the site you are measuring, or the social media channel you are evaluating.
metricsare the quantitative measurements for these dimensions. For example, if you were looking at how your ads are performing in Paris (the dimension), your metric would be 2,000 recorded paid sessions.
Metrics and dimensions make up every single report in Google Analytics.
What can you do with Google Analytics?
In short, Google Analytics helps you make marketing campaign decisions based on data. You can justify spending more on your advertising,Find out where to advertise, and even determine whattypes of contentYou must be out there.
Google Analytics categorizes data into theABCs:
- CThe version
Additionally, you can use it to break down your audience and real-time traffic. I'll break these down a bit more.
Acquisition refers to how you get website traffic / website visitors. Simply put, you can use acquisition reports to see how your traffic is arriving on your website.
When you first look under "Acquisitions Report" in your Google Analytics dashboard, you'll notice that the "Overview" tab gives you a high-level view of acquisition, behavior, and conversion data for your top traffic sources by channel (recommended, direct, organic search, and social).
This gives you the most important data up front – the number of sessions recorded,the bounce rateof these won visitors and their conversions for your most effective channels. It offers a quick and easy way to see how your top channels are performing.
Acquisition reports are a great way to see which are the best ways to drive traffic to your website and take specific actions. Using other views you can look at different types of traffic.
Let's say you want to know which search engine is generating the most organic traffic. In the Source/Medium view, you can see down which individual sources and media have acquired the most customers (e.g. Google/Organic vs. Bing/Organic).
Or you can investigate which referral sources are responsible for driving the most referral traffic to your site by looking at Referral View. Use this information to make decisions about where to promote content. For example if you find thisDriving on PinterestTo bring a significant number of people to your site, work on publishing content there.
If you just want to look at social recommendations, check out the Social Networks tab. This only focuses on the social media traffic. Use this tab to discover the networks where people are interacting with your content. You can also see what content is performing best in each community. For example, you may find that your broader entertainment content performs better on Facebook, while your business-related content performs wellis LinkedIn.
The great thing about Google Analytics is the integration with other tools. The Acquisition section can be integrated into your Ads account so you can track how your campaigns are performing in terms of attracting customers.
Use the Ads section to see keyword performance and identify popular searches that drive traffic to your site. Use this information to create more targeted campaigns based on popular searches and topics people are searching for.
You can also integrate withsearch consoleto see how your landing pages are performing. Are certain pages great at bringing people to your site but way down the bottom of Google search results? Arespecific keywordsGetting them to show up in search results, but resulting in a below-average CTR? By integrating your Search Console data with Google Analytics, you can see all of this data andOptimize your website to increase click through rate.
Finally, you can use Campaign View to track visitors who came from campaigns that you set up yourselfUTM-Parameter. Keep in mind that these results apply to campaigns that you have structured using UTM codes - not your advertising campaigns, which are automatically synced.
The behavior reports are all about seeing what visitors are actually doing on your website. By using these user behavior reports, you can evaluate the performance of your website content and determine whether your visitors are taking the desired actions.
When you access the Behavior tab for the first time, you'll see an overview again. This view gives you a chart showing the amount of traffic your website received during the period under review.
You'll also see page views, unique page views, average time on page, bounce rate metrics, and exit percentage metrics. All of these metrics describe how a user interacted with your page. Here are some brief definitions:
- Page Views: Total number of pages viewed.
- Unique Pageviews: Number of unique people who viewed a specific page at least once during a visit.
- Average time on page: The average time users spend looking at a page.
- Bounce Rate: The percentage of visits to a single page. (For aFor an in-depth lesson on bounce rate and how to use it, click here.)
- Percent Abandonment: Percentage of users who abandon a page or set of pages
After the Overview tab is the Behavior Flow view. This shows the path visitors typically take when visiting your website, from entering to exiting. Use this to see where people tend to get on and off.
understand page content
Next is the Website Content section, which reports on how visitors interact with different pages (or pieces of content) on your website. Google Analytics breaks this down into a few different reports: All Pages, Content Drilldown, Landing Pages, and Exit Pages.
The All Pages report shows your site's top pages based solely on traffic. Use this to see what content is performing best on your site.
The Content Drilldown report can be used for the areas of your website with folders like /blog and /news. This report shows you the top-level folders of content on your site and the top-level items within those folders. Simply "drill down" into the folders to see individual performance. This gives you a more holistic view of how different content areas are performing on your site.
The Landing Pages report shows you the top landing pages that your visitors use to reach your website. This report shows you conversions based on your goals, so you can see which pages convert the most people. Use this information to optimize your campaigns and drive more traffic to the pages with higher conversion rates.
Exit pages are about where people leave your website. You should use this data to see where you drop the ball. Check out these pages to see if you're missing an opportunity to send users elsewhere on your site.
Understand website speed
The next section of the Behavior tab is about website speed – this is directly about load time. Use this section to determine which areas of your site may need changesoptimize due to their slow loading speed.
The Overview tab gives you a snapshot of the average load time of all pages on your website. This is also broken down by browser. Here are a few definitions you need to know (note that all times are in seconds):
- Average Page Load Time: The average time it takes to load pages
- Average Redirect Time: The average time spent redirecting before a page is fetched
- Average Domain Lookup Time: The average time spent doing DNS lookups for a page
- Average server connection time: The average time spent establishing a TCP connection for a page
- Average Server Response Time: The average time it takes your server to respond to a user request (an important factor forhosting company)
- Average Page Download Time: The average time it takes to download a page
The Page Timings report shows you how long your most visited pages take to load compared to the total load time of your website. Use this to determine which pages you need to optimize based on their slow loading speed.
To optimize the slower pages,Check out my guide to improving website speed.
Next, you'll see the Speed Suggestions report, which gives you advice from Google on how to optimize specific pages on your site. It also gives you detailed information for each page!
Don't get bogged down here — start with the top-traffic pages. Those are the ones that really matter.
Last is user timings. This feature requires special code on your website (in addition to the regular Google Analytics tracking code). If you decide to continue using this feature, you can see how quickly certain elements on a page load - like a video. From there you can see if it is affecting the user experience.
Understand Site Search
Another feature of the behavior reports is site search, which shows how people are using your site's search function.
The Overview tab shows you general metrics for visitors who use the search box on your site. You can also see the search terms they used and the page they landed on. Use this information to find keywords to use in Google Ads.
The usage report shows the number of visits that used the search box versus those that didn't. This allows you to see if your search box is improving metrics like bounce rate and conversions.
The Search Terms view provides detailed information about the search terms that users are using on your site, such as: B. how many times this term was used, the number of pages this term triggers and the percentage of search exits and refinements. You can use this data to determine how easy it is to find information on your website and what information people are looking for - then you can create ads that take users directly there.
Finally, there is the Pages report. This is a copy of the Search Terms report, but instead of focusing on the term, it focuses on the pages that the searches originated from.
understand the events
Events are used to track specific interactions on your website, such as B. Clicks on external links, video playback, resource downloads, etc.
This departmentrequires a special tracking codeto work. If you use oneWordPress plugin like MonsterInsights, then it works automatically.
The summary report shows a summary of the interactions you're tracking. These are tracked based on the event tracking code you set up. So if you're tracking newsletter signups and video plays, that information will appear here.
The Top Events report looks at the events with the most engagement. Suppose you have multiple video downloads. Use this section to see which video is downloaded the most. This can tell you what your audience is most interested in - then you can create more of that type of content.
The Pages report under Events shows you the top pages where visitors are interacting with your events. So when you're working with multiple pages of assets, you'll not only see which events are performing best, but also which pages are getting the most event traction. This can help you optimize your pages and focus your efforts (and events!) more on the pages that are performing well.
Next, you'll see the event flow report, which shows the path visitors take when they interact with your event. You can see where people are arriving and where they are getting off.
Finally, there are experiments. Google lets you run experiments like A/B testing to see which landing page works best for your specific goals. If you want to optimize these goals, you should use tests to see which pages are performing best and which pages need adjustment.
The Conversions section of Google Analytics is all about understanding how people convert on your website, which is essential to improving your conversion rate.
Conversion reports are divided into four sections: Goals, Commerce, Multi-Channel Funnels, and Attribution. Let's look at what these mean.
The Goals section, like the other sections, begins with an Overview tab. In the overview you can see a short summary of the number of target conversions on your website, i.e. H. the total number of conversions.
Here it is important to note that in order to be successful, you should set good goals. For example, if you run an e-commerce business, you'd rather track purchases than filled shopping carts, right? That's a more reasonable picture of how many people actually converted. Make sure you set yourself up for victory by setting specific (and accurate) goals.
Next is the Destination URLs report, which shows the URLs where people are actually converting. The primary view is just the actual goal completion page (i.e. thethank you pageafter registration). To see the page that leads to this conclusion, use the secondary dimension drop-down menu to show Goal Previous Step -1.
The Reverse Destination Path report works similar to the Destination URL report, but shows you the previous three steps to completing the destination. Use this to see the paths people take to convert and how many steps it takes someone to reach that conversion stage.
Next, look at funnel visualizations. This only works if you set up the goal to track multiple steps in the conversion process. Essentially, what you will see is the typical path of the conversion, as well as the places where people drop out during the process. This can help you find roadblocks to conversions — like a complicated checkout process or a broken cart page.
You can also use the Target Flow Visualization report in the same way.
Understand the eCommerce space
Next up under Conversions is the Ecommerce section, which is specifically for businesses that sell products on their website.
In the summary report, you can see your ecommerce conversion rate, average order value, unique purchases, and even the quantity of products sold.
There are also some detailed reports here. The Product Performance Report shows how yourindividual productsperform. Use this to see which products are great and which aren't. Pay attention to trends in seasonality and price.
You can also look at the total sales you've made using the sales performance report. This breaks down your sales performance on a daily basis.
Next you will see the transaction report, which shows income, taxes,shipping , and the quantity of items purchased for each transaction made during the period you're measuring.
Last but not least, you have time to purchase, which shows the time it takes for a visitor to purchase an item after arriving on your website. Use this data to see if there are anyhurdles in the buying process.
Understand the Multi-Channel Funnels section
Use multi-channel funnels to get a complete view of a customer's journey on your website. Rather than attributing the conversion to the last recommendation like Google does, this section helps you see other actions a user is taking that help them convert - such as: B. reading a blog post, downloading a guide, or signing up for a newsletter.
The Overview report shows a summary of all marketing channels that help drive conversions on your website. Use this to see which channels are contributing more conversion traffic. If it's social, you might want to focus more of your efforts on it (instead of getting paid).
Next comes the Assisted Conversions section - this shows the number of conversions that a channel has indirectly influenced. For example, your blog might have 50 supported conversions. It wasn't the last touch, but 50 of the 100 visits to your blog resulted in a subsequent conversion.
If you want to see which paths conversions take, use the Top Conversion Paths report. This shows the most typical paths to conversion that users take. For example, you may find that most of your users find you through organic search and then return directly to your site to purchase a product from you.
If you want to see how long it takes for someone to convert, check out the time lag report. This shows you how long (in days) it takes for visitors to convert after their first visit to your website. Use this data to optimize your conversion process.
Similar to the time delay, the page length report shows the number of times a visitor interacts with your website before converting.
Understanding the Attribution Section
The attribution section of Google Analytics has only one report: the model comparison tool. You can use this to understand the difference in conversions when you change attribution. Let's say you believe that an ad that was a user's first touch point should get the conversion. You can see how your conversion numbers change if you change the attribution of the conversion to that first interaction.
This allows you to see how different marketing channels affect your overall conversions, e.g. B. Paid advertising, email and content marketing.
You can learn more about who is driving your website traffic in the "Audience" section of Google Analytics. This section emphasizes demographics and attributes associated with your traffic. Most of the reports are self-explanatory, but the mobile and geographic reports are probably the most useful.
With this report you can see who is on your website and what they are doingReal time. If you're running a sale, are in the media or just want to see how the site is performing in real time, then you've come to the right place.
Troubleshooting with Google Analytics
Ultimately, Google Analytics is truly a problem-solving tool — it's not the ultimate answer. Data overload is a very real thing, so don't give in to analysis paralysis. Instead, use good problem-solving techniques.
First and foremost, don't enter your Google Analytics account to look for a solution. You want to look for problems. Is the page speed too slow? Do customers drop off at a certain point on the website? These are all problems that you can identify using Google Analytics. Only then can you delve into the root cause of the problem and how to fix it.
Second, Google Analytics is a tool that can go wrong. It's important to understand whereGoogle Analytics spam comes from& What do you think. It's also useful to understandhow to sort unimportant information (or just wrong information).from your point of view so you can see what is important.
Now that you know how Google Analytics works, it's time to dive in. Use these next steps to get started:
- Make sure Google Analytics is implemented correctly. You can use Google Tag Assistant to check this. If you use WordPress,Use an analytics pluginto do it properly. Be sure to carefully review each Google Analytics setting.
- If you have a question or a problem with your website, outline the dimension and metric that shows that problem or answers the question. For example, if you're wondering if people are finding a particular page through organic search, you should look at the organic traffic (that is, channels and page views) to that page.
- Once you have the question/problem, dive further into analytics to find the root cause. If you find that people aren't finding your page through organic search, see if you can use the data to find out why.
Discover related Analytics posts!
- How to use URL Builder: UTM parameter tagging effectively
What can I do with Google Analytics? ›
Google Analytics includes features that can help users identify trends and patterns in how visitors engage with their websites. Features enable data collection, analysis, monitoring, visualization, reporting and integration with other applications.What are 3 examples of data Google Analytics can collect? ›
- Number of users.
- Session statistics.
- Approximate geolocation.
- Browser and device information.
Google Analytics can help you analyze the visitor's behavior and how they are interacting with your business. This will be useful to see any trends across a certain time frame. With the help of data collected in GA, you can find out which campaign has been most efficient and plan for future marketing campaigns.Is Google Analytics a useful skill? ›
Google Analytics provides crucial and valuable insights that can help to create a business success strategy. Google Analytics helps you understand the business aspects. For instance, if you have an online selling product business, you have to study and understand your customers' requirements so you can deliver better.Is it worth to learn Google Analytics? ›
Learning Google Analytics is absolutely worth it for anybody who is doing a job related to digital marketing or data analysis. GA is the most popular web analytics tool in the world and the demand for professionals has been rising since the release of GA4.Can I earn money with Google Analytics? ›
If you're an up and coming analytics expert looking to make a side-income off your skills, that's a lot of potential customers! The demand for people with web analytics skills continues to increase. Companies need help setting up, managing, and understanding their analytics accounts.What Google Analytics Cannot tell you? ›
Google Analytics will only process information from the moment you start tracking on your site. It can't access any historical data before you connect to Google Analytics. You can, however, use data import to combine data collected from other sources.
Google Analytics 4 is our next-generation measurement solution, and it's replacing Universal Analytics. On July 1, 2023, standard Universal Analytics properties will stop processing new hits. If you still rely on Universal Analytics, we recommend that you prepare to use Google Analytics 4 going forward.What is Google Analytics for beginners? ›
Google Analytics for Beginners shows new users how to create an account, implement tracking code, and set up data filters. You'll learn how to navigate the Google Analytics interface and reports, and set up dashboards and shortcuts.What is the most useful data in Google Analytics? ›
- Traffic. At the fundamental level, you are interested to know how many people are visiting your website. ...
- Traffic Sources. ...
- Bounce Rate. ...
- Conversion Rate. ...
- Landing Pages. ...
- Exit Pages. ...
- Network Referrals. ...
What are the 4 main reports in Google Analytics? ›
While you can use the data from Google Analytics in myriad ways, the four most helpful reports for your content marketing cover traffic, navigation summary, traffic from organic search, and conversions.When should I use Google Analytics? ›
- You can see how people find your website. ...
- You can track what people do when they're on your website. ...
- You gain data on who's visiting your website and how. ...
- You can find the most popular pages on your website. ...
- It helps you track conversions. ...
- It's free. ...
- It's easy.
Google Analytics is a website traffic analysis application that provides real-time statistics and analysis of user interaction with the website. Google analytics enables website owners to analyze their visitors, with the objective of interpreting and optimizing website's performance.What is the purpose of analytics? ›
Analytics is a field of computer science that uses math, statistics, and machine learning to find meaningful patterns in data. Analytics – or data analytics – involves sifting through massive data sets to discover, interpret, and share new insights and knowledge.Is Google Analytics certificate enough to get a job? ›
This certification can show a potential employer that you have unique and specialised skills that may be of value to them. By including your Google Analytics certification on your resume, you may increase your chances of getting a job offer for your desired role.Can I get a job with just the Google Data Analytics certificate? ›
Graduates of Google's data analyst certificate will have the skills and portfolio to pursue a junior- or associate-level data analyst position.Does Google Analytics require coding? ›
Indeed, you do not need coding prowess to utilize Google Analytics. So, this guide is directed principally to individuals who do not consider themselves or their principal professional responsibilities to be tech. It will touch only on the essential elements to get started with Google Analytics.How many hours is Google Analytics for beginners? ›
How long will the course take to complete? If you go through all the course content sequentially, we expect the course to take 4-6 hours to complete, depending on your level of familiarity with the course content.Can I learn Google Analytics on my own? ›
Google's own Analytics Academy offers free, online courses on Analytics and other data analysis tools. We recommend two in particular: Google Analytics for Beginners shows new users how to create an account, implement tracking code, and set up data filters.How much is Google Analytics certification? ›
How much do the Google Data Analytics Certificate cost? The Google Data Analytics Certificate costs $39 per month by subscription on Coursera.
How much does an entry level data analyst make at Google? ›
The estimated total pay for a Junior Data Analyst at Google is $102,444 per year. This number represents the median, which is the midpoint of the ranges from our proprietary Total Pay Estimate model and based on salaries collected from our users. The estimated base pay is $78,461 per year.How do I become a Google analyst? ›
- Learn about Google Analytics. The first step to gaining a Google Analytics certification is to better understand Google Analytics itself. ...
- Prepare for the Google Analytics certification exam. ...
- Take the exam. ...
- Market your certification.
- Step 1: Setting up Google Analytics (GA)
- Step 2: Adding GA tracking code to your site.
- Step 3: Setting up Goals in GA.
- Step 4: Setting up and Tracking UTM Parameters.
- Step 5: Monitoring Key Metrics.
To protect user privacy, Google policies mandate that no data be passed to Google that Google could use or recognize as personally identifiable information (PII). PII includes, but is not limited to, information such as email addresses, personal mobile numbers, and social security numbers.What should I check in Google Analytics? ›
- See how much traffic you're getting from a new social or blog post.
- Know immediately if a one-day sale or event is driving views and/or conversions.
- Make sure tracking URLs and custom events that you've just set up are working as they should.
- Piwik PRO.
GA4 is a new property designed for the future of measurement: Collects both website and app data to better understand the customer journey. Uses event-based data instead of session-based. Includes privacy controls such as cookieless measurement, and behavioral and conversion modeling.Is there something better than Google Analytics? ›
Piwik PRO Analytics Suite (PPAS) is a privacy-friendly alternative to Google Analytics. It's ideal for sectors that handle sensitive customer data like government, healthcare, or finance. Every organization seeking an analytics software aligned with data protection laws should check it out.Can I track any website using Google Analytics? ›
Do you want to know how to track website traffic with Google Analytics? If you use Google Analytics to see your website traffic, you'll get to see all kinds of data like how your visitors found your site, how long they spent on your site, and what pages they viewed.Can a beginner learn data analytics? ›
Beginners start with data analytics by learning the different types of data and how information is processed to draw meaningful conclusions from it. This data analytics free course can give you a complete overview of data analytics and how it is used.
What are the 5 types of data analytics? ›
5 Types of analytics: Prescriptive, Predictive, Diagnostic, Descriptive and Cognitive Analytics - WeirdGeek | Data science learning, Data analytics, Data science.What are the 4 types of data scope in Google Analytics? ›
There are four levels of scope: product, hit, session, and user: Product – value is applied to the product for which it has been set (Enhanced Ecommerce only).How do I use Google Analytics for my business? ›
- Set up a Google account. You must have a valid Google account to register for Google Analytics. ...
- Create a Google Analytics account. ...
- Add the name, URL and industry of your website. ...
- Add a view to your property. ...
- Add a tracking code. ...
- Verify that the code is working.
The ABC's of Google Analytics: Acquisition-Behavior-Conversion.How many types of Google Analytics are there? ›
In Google Analytics, you can set four different types of goals: URL Destination goals. Visit Duration goals. Page/Visit goals.How do I report data to Google Analytics? ›
- Sign in to Google Analytics.
- Navigate to your view.
- Open Reports.
- Click Customization > Custom Reports > +New Custom Report.
- Enter a Title.
- (Optional) Click +add report tab. ...
- Select a report type: Explorer, Flat Table, Map Overlay, or Funnel. ...
- Define your dimension and metrics.
So despite industry ageism, a recent study by Zippia showed that the average age of data analysts in the U.S. is 43 years old. This takes us back to our titular question: are you too old to start a new career in data analytics? The short answer, in our opinion, is no.What are the 3 main analytics we can do with data? ›
Descriptive, predictive and prescriptive analytics.What are examples of analytics? ›
- Growing sales. ...
- Developing marketing strategies. ...
- Using predictive analytics. ...
- Improving financial efficiency. ...
- Increasing productivity through streamlined processes.
Yes. How hard is it for a fresher from a noncoding background to find a job in data analytics after doing a certification course? A lot easier than it would be if you were interested in machine learning or data science. Data analysts are often business people who know SQL, they aren't IT people.
Can I get a job in data analytics without experience? ›
If you're wondering how to become a Data Analyst with no experience in the field, your first step is to acquire the relevant data skills. Some of these skills are relatively easy to acquire individually, others are more complex.How many hours to complete Google Data Analytics certification? ›
How long will the course take to complete? If you go through all the course content sequentially, we expect the course to take 4-6 hours to complete, depending on your level of familiarity with the course content. If I have a question about the course, who should I ask?Is the Google Analytics exam hard? ›
How Hard is The Exam? With the right preparation, the GAIQ exam can be completed with ease. Make sure to dedicate time to studying and getting ready, but you can always retake it if you don't pass, or want a better score!Do analytics jobs pay well? ›
Do Data Analysts Make Good Money? Yes, data analysts do make a lot of money. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average salary across all occupations in the US is $58,260. The average salary of a data analyst is well above that.Is data analytics a tough job? ›
Data analysis is neither a “hard” nor “soft” skill but is instead a process that involves a combination of both. Some of the technical skills that a data analyst must know include programming languages like Python, database tools like Excel, and data visualization tools like Tableau.How do I start a career in analytics? ›
- Get a foundational education.
- Build your technical skills.
- Work on projects with real data.
- Develop a portfolio of your work.
- Practice presenting your findings.
- Get an entry-level data analyst job.
- Consider certification or an advanced degree.