By Selena Conmackie
Here is the deal. Most of us are just excited to get a website up. But what do you do AFTER your website is up and running? Right, there is more than when either you or your web developer hits Publish and your web content is out in the wild wild interweb of a universe. Like anything else in your business, you need some data to know if what youʻve implemented is working. Because if itʻs not, you want to have stats to make the changes. As military spouse entrepreneurs, we wear all the hats and I want to make sure to help you build your toolkit! So letʻs dive in and talk about Google Analytics. (Donʻt be scared, I promise, we will get through this.)
In the ever-evolving digital landscape, the significance of online visibility cannot be overstated. You took the time and money to build a website for your business. Is it working for you? If your business is striving to gain a competitive edge and outrank your competitors on Google, mastering the art of Google Analytics is key. It’s my absolute favorite (and the most powerful) tool because it can empower you with valuable insights into your website’s performance, enabling you to make data-driven decisions and optimize your online presence effectively.
Let’s deep dive into the world of Google Analytics and explore how you can harness its potential to keep you competitive. As of this writing, Google Analytics has moved to their new model called GA4 or Google Analytics 4. If you have their older model Universal Analytics or UA, that code will stop receiving data and youʻll until July 2024 to export your historical data for your records.
Understanding Google Analytics
Google Analytics is a robust and free web analytics service offered by Google that allows website owners and marketers to track and analyze website traffic. By providing an in-depth analysis of your website’s visitors, their behaviors, and interactions, you gain valuable data to evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing efforts, identify areas for improvement, and make informed decisions to enhance your online visibility. Did I mention this tool is free?
Setting Up Google Analytics for Your Website
To begin your journey to digital dominance, the first step is setting up Google Analytics for your website. Follow these simple steps to get started:
- Create a Google Analytics Account: If you don’t have a Google Analytics account, head to the official Google Analytics website and sign up using a Google account (e.g., Gmail). https://analytics.google.com/
- Add Your Website to Google Analytics: After creating an account, follow the prompts to add your website’s URL to Google Analytics. You will receive a tracking code that must be added to each page of your website.
- Install the Tracking Code: Your tracking code can be added to any CMS platform (WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, GoDaddy, etc.) Just follow the instructions for your platform.
- Verify Installation: Once the tracking code is added, verify its installation using the “Tracking Status” feature in your Google Analytics account.
Mastering Key Metrics: Insights That Propel Your Business Forward
With Google Analytics up and running, it’s time to familiarize yourself with key metrics and reports that offer vital insights into your website’s performance.
Total Users and New Users
These two metrics have been continued from Universal Analytics and are included in GA4’s acquisition reports to a similar end:
Total Users: Unique visitors to your channel within a specified period.
New users: First-time site visitors.
The Demographic Information and Technology areas give you an understanding of who your visitors are and what devices they are using to access and interact with your site.
Interaction in Google Analytics is closely tied to events. When you navigate to the Engagement tab, you will find a comprehensive breakdown of activities based on pre-defined settings, such as page views, scrolls, clicks to exit, and searches, or customized settings tailored to your specific needs.
Within this report, you will come across essential event count metrics, providing valuable insights into the number of actions taken and events triggered by individual users. This data enables you to gauge user engagement and interaction with your website or app, helping you make informed decisions to optimize user experiences and drive better results.
The Engagement tab in Google Analytics also encompasses conversions through various channels. It provides valuable data on the frequency of conversion events being triggered, offering insights into user actions that lead to successful conversions.
To ensure accurate and reliable results from this data, it is essential to set up this activity in Google Analytics 4 (GA4). You can achieve this by accessing the platform’s Settings and then selecting the Conversions tab. Properly configuring conversion tracking allows you to effectively monitor and analyze the success of your conversion goals, empowering you to make data-driven decisions and optimize your marketing efforts for improved outcomes.
The correlation between engaged sessions and regular sessions introduces a significant metric known as the “engagement rate” for your website or app. This valuable percentage value serves as a key indicator, allowing you to assess the level of user interaction and involvement your channels foster on your pages.
Analyzing Landing Pages: Optimizing First Impressions
The landing pages on your website play a pivotal role in attracting and engaging visitors. You can assess the performance of each landing page, identify high-performing pages, and optimize underperforming ones. Crafting compelling content and employing persuasive calls-to-action on these pages can significantly enhance your conversion rates.
Embracing Real-Time Data: Stay Ahead of the Game
Google Analytics offers real-time data, allowing you to monitor website activity as it happens. This feature is invaluable for tracking the immediate impact of marketing campaigns, product launches, or special promotions. Keeping a close eye on real-time data enables you to make timely adjustments and seize opportunities as they arise.
In today’s fiercely competitive digital world, gaining visibility and outperforming your competitors on Google is crucial for business website success. Using Google Analytics can unlock valuable insights into your website’s performance, audience behavior, and marketing effectiveness. Armed with data-driven decision-making, you can refine your strategies, enhance user experience, and boost your search rankings.
Remember, arm yourself with the tools for your business. You have worked your butt off for it!
About Selena Conmackie
Some call Selena their Social Media Gal, Website Designer Extraordinaire Guru, Genius (their words, not hers). But she’s also a Military Spouse following her husband with her kid and dog in tow to wherever the Army sends them. So, just add Rockstar Mom and Ah-mazing Wife to her list. H A U O L I is the name of her small boutique business. It means Happy in Hawaiian and has a special meaning that became the inspiration for her new journey. Her goal is to help your business to succeed — and social media plays a part in that. She enjoys the game of hashtags and algorithms and helping her clients optimize their online presence.