It seems like the buzzword everyone talks about in business nowadays is “analytics.” In order to understand how to make one’s business more successful, the business owner or manager is required to analyze certain pieces of information and convert the analysis to a plan of action. The problem many business owners or managers run into nowadays, however, is that there is so much data available it becomes difficult to know how to look at it and what to use.
When it comes to digital marketing, what we at VetsWeb call the 800 pound Gorilla of search engines, Google, is kinda enough to offer an analytics package that can help you better understand your website traffic. Unfortunately, even this data can sometimes fall in the “too much information” category for a manager or business owner with far more on his or her mind. The goal of this article is to help you understand some of the basic information that Google Analytics provides so your business can capitalize on its web traffic.
So let’s first start with the basic home screen of Google Analytics. We will quickly discuss a few key notes that can help your business make some decisions about where to go with your digital marketing by looking at a few key factors.
Google Analytics First Page
Now while all of this data may seem daunting, there are a few key factors that Google Analytics readily provides so we can better guide our website traffic in a way that converts to sales. First of all, the line chart on the default view gives the user a daily breakdown of “sessions” or visits to the site. This is a handy way to track social media marketing efforts like Facebook or Twitter to see if different types of messages result in more site visits on the day of or days following your posts.
To the left is a more detailed look into the numbers, a peek into what Google Analytics offers on its primary page. While the “Sessions” section is on the top left, and represents how many different visits to your site there were in the reporting period (which defaults to 30 days). This is less important than the first number that is outlined with a red box: Users.
The Users section is the number of unique individual users that have visited your website during the reporting period. In this case, there were 147 unique visitors to the site. We will discuss how to compare from previous periods in a later blog, but unique visitors is very important for a business trying to acquire new customers. For an E-Commerce or service type business, there may be a higher amount of repeat visitors, which could also mean a lower percentage of New Sessions is good.
Depending on your marketing strategy, you may be remarketing or pursuing new customers. Fortunately, Google Analytics offers the “% New Sessions” statistic which tells the administrator how many of its visitors in the time period were actually visiting for the first time. This is another tool that can be used along with the Daily Sessions line chart discussed earlier that can help determine the success of your Search Engine Optimization or Social Media Management strategies.
The next number we will discuss is the “Pages/Section,” which can help determine whether or not the website is resonating with your visitors. The higher the number, the better your site is doing its job: informing current or potential customers about the product or service your firm is offering. This is also tied heavily to the number for Average Session Duration. The idea is to keep visitors on the website as long as possible to increase the chance of sales or actions that lead to revenue such as Contact Form submissions.
Finally, we have the “Bounce Rate” section of the report, which is essentially a number that quantifies how well your site is working from the moment visitors arrive. The bounce rate is an indication of the percentage of visitors that arrive on a website and then never move to a second page. These visitors are one page viewers which are not moved by the site, whether it be a design issue, interaction issue, or informational issue. A high bounce rate, 90% for example, can indicate that visitors are underwhelmed by the site. It could be time for a new website design, which your business should consider once every year to two years to keep things fresh.
The VetsWeb team is always willing to go over reports with you as a manager or business owner and help determine factors that could help meet your goals. Typically digital marketing should lead to revenue, but having an ineffective website is not going to help in that regard. Look for more upcoming posts on using Google Analytics and how free data can help grow your business!