Rules to Better Google Analytics Reports - 3 Rules
Google Analytics gives you a great insight into how, when and where your website is used. If you're not using an analytics package in your website, you're flying blind when it comes to understanding how, when and where your website is used.
By using Google Analytics, you will be able to see what your visitors are viewing and what they aren't, what they spend large amount's of time on, what pages are causing errors, what pages are directing visitors to you, which browsers and devices are being used to see you site and more. All this information help you better structure your site to what your visitors like. It also allows you to compare site traffic from one month to another.
The most useful reports:
- Which are your most popular pages of your website
- Which sites are referring the most hits to you
- Which keywords are bringing users to your site
- If you have downloads, which are the most popular
To add Google Analytics to your website:
- Log into your Google account,
- Go to Admin ,
- Ensure both Account and Property
- Specify your website details,
- Find your Tracking Code,
- And add the script to your website
Once deployed, this script will start tracking metrics and interacting with Google Analytics.
You are good to go!
Understanding and taking advantage of tracking codes on URLs is very important to working out where to spend your SEO efforts and $$$.
What is the difference in these 2 URLs?
With the second URL you will get reports like this:
This enables the page owner to find out how visitors are finding the page. For example, if they're advertising ProductX on Google, and on Facebook, and in email blasts, all linking to the same page, they can customise the links from each of these pages with a unique tracking code. This code will identify the traffic that comes from that source, along with other useful information like which advertising campaign the traffic came from.
With the long URL, there's a lot of additional information that can be taken from the link:
- utm - An Urchin Traffic Module (UTM) code is the way that businesses track sales from their origination point (like a tweet, email or a brochure) down the funnel to their conversion page.
- expid – short for 'experiment id' , it relates to using Google Experiments, which is a way of testing different versions of pages to see which one converts the best
- source - The source is where your link is hosted, like search, affiliate website or email campaign name or anywhere else.
- medium – used to identify the medium the link was used upon such as: email, CPC, or other method of sharing.
- campaign - The medium is how it's delivered, like a postcard, PPC, email or social media. The campaign is typically what you're promoting, or the special way you're promoting it (like a holiday sale).
- referrer – this relates to the "expid" code earlier in the URL – it shows which variant of the a/b testing you were referred from (in this case, it is the "b" version of the experiment)
Keeping on top of your web site analytics can be daunting given the vast number of reports that are available in Google Analytics.
Using the Content by Title report is an excellent way to view the improvement in pages that have been created for specific keyword terms.
Choose the date range you want to view (eg 12 months)
Filter the report by the keyword term you are interested in viewing (eg TFS or SQL Server or SharePoint, etc). This assumes that you have used these keyword terms in the titles of the pages (see Rules To Better Google Rankings for more details on best practices for increasing your Google presence).
The overall trend of your pageviews should be increasing.