How to Get Started with Google Analytics
What is Google Analytics
Tracking who is visiting your website, where in the world they are coming from, what device they are using even how long they are looking at a page for is all possible with Google Analytics.
Google have created a free tool allowing website owners to create a free Analytics account and begin capturing metrics or data related to your website visitors. If you don't have Analytics set up for your site, we'll walk you through the basics of getting started.
Why you need to use Google Analytics for your website
If you have a blog or website, knowing what your visitors are doing and how they are interacting with your site is imperative. Understanding how people are reacting to the content, information or products you're showcasing to the world will help make better decisions leading to more engagement, sales and a better web presence.
Analytics will help answer many questions about who's visiting your website. Below are some of the metrics Google Analytics will track and produce for you.
- The number of visitors to your site
- How long those visitors are spending on your site
- Where do these visitors come from
- What age and gender are my visitors
- Which social media channels are driving traffic to my site
- Which websites are sending visitors to my site
- Where do my visitors go to next on my website
- What can be done to improve the speed of my site
- What blog content or pages do my visitors like most
- How many visitors are converting
There is more to this list, but the above are the most commonly used by website owners. Detailed analytics will help paint a better picture of who your visitors are and what marketing tactics could be implemented to drive more traffic.
Installing Google Analytics
With a better idea of what Analytics is, let's start digging into how to get everything setup for your website.
Create your account
Using your Google Login details head to Google Analytics and sign up for the Free Solutions for Small Business.
Sign into Google with your Google Account Details and click "Sign up".
Select the "Website" tab and enter your details and click "Get Tracking ID" and accept the terms.
Next, you need to add the "Universal Analytics tracking ID" to your website.
If you are already using Yousemble adding this tracking ID is a simple copy / paste exercise. Your ID will look something like UA-XXXXXXXX-X ID (There will be a random mix of numbers or letter in place of the X's)
Select and copy this ID and head to "Settings" > "General" > Then Paste your ID in the "Google Analytics ID" field and click "Save".
Google Analytics will be successfully setup for your website. For a step-by-step video, please see the following tutorial.
If you are not using Yousemble, you'll need to copy the "Website Tracking" script and implement it before the closing </body> tag of your website. Consult your web developer if you are unsure how to do this.
Setting up your first Goal
With Analytics tracking new visitors to your website lets implement your first "Goal". Goals will tell Google Analytics when an important event has happened. For example, when someone submits a form on your website you will be able to track the difference between the number of visitors visiting your "Contact" page and of those visitors the number submitting the form. Another example will be if you sell products on your site, the amount of engagement on that product page to actual sales of the product.
To set up your first goal click on "Admin" at the top then click on "Goals".
Click on "New Goal" (Red Button) and under the "Goal Setup" select "Custom" then click "Continue"
Enter a "Name" for your goal and select "Destination" then click "Continue"
When using Yousemble, every form that is submitted adds "&form-name=thank-you" to the URL. For example your contact page address would look something like "/contact&form-name=thank-you".
Enter that URL in the "Destination" field with the option "Equals to" then click "Save"
You can create up to 20 goals for your website so make sure you setup important ones.
How to view your data
To start analysing the information Analytics is tracking click on "Reporting" at the top, then "Audience" > "Overview" on the left. Filter the results by hour, day, week and month. Explore the "Demographics" and "Interests" links on the left and learn more about your visitors.
Now that you have the basics starting digging further into your Analytics data to discover more about your visitors. The more insights you have, the better decisions you can make about your site content and customer behaviour. If you have any questions about Google Analytics let us know by leaving a comment below.
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