Google Analytics is a term not everyone is familiar with, but it should be. If you have not installed it on your webpage, or did it but never had the time to look at your data, then look no further. I will guide you through your first steps. It’s probably difficult to imagine, but some sites still do not utilize GA (Google Analytics) to put a number on their website traffic. Today I will show you a few basics on how to start using Google Analytics, from a pure newbie’s point of view. You will learn why you might need it and how you will use it. Let’s get into it.
- Why You Need Google Analytics
If you are a website owner, or you are a blog owner, or especially if you own a statistic website, you definitely need Google Analytics. It is used both for personal and for business reasons. Google Analytics will help you answers some of these questions: How many individuals have clicked on my website? Where are these individuals from? Is my website mobile friendly, or do I need to make it more mobile friendly? Which sites redirect traffic directly to my site? Which marketing tactics motivate people to click on my website? Which pages are the most interesting and the most popular on my website? How many individuals have become leads or customers? Where did these come from? How can my website speed be improved? Which content on my blog/website my visitors like the most? Apart from these most popular questions, there are many, many more Google Analytics can answer for you. These are crucial, however, for most GA users. Next step is to get GA on your website.
- Getting Google Analytics on Your Website
Now firstly, you will need to get yourself a Google Analytics account. If you already have a Google account for other Google’s services like Gmail, Google Drive, Google Calendar, Google+, or YouTube, then you can simply setup your Google Analytics account using your existing Google Account. If you do not have on however, you will need to make one. This Google Account you will need to keep forever and it needs to be one that only you will be using. No collective account for this one. When you have your Google account you should go to Google Analytics and press the Sign into Google Analytics. Afterwards, you will be presented with a three-step process you must take to be able to use Google Analytics. In these steps choose what is applicable for you and your website. Since you might have multiple websites under your ownerships, Google has thought of that as well. You can have multiple Google Analytics accounts under one Google account (100 to be precise). There are several scenarios you can check out at their website.
- Tracking Code – Installing
When you’re finished with the step above you should click ‘’Get Tracking ID’’ button. This will bring up a popup window with Google Analytics terms and conditions. After you’ve read them your code will be generated. You must install this code on every website you own. The process depends on what type of website you have. The processes vary slightly so make sure you know on what your page is built on.
- Setting Up Your Goals
After the tracking code has been installed, it would behove you to set up Goals. You will find them in the Admin link at the top of Google Analytics and then pressing on Goals under your site’s View column. Goals tells Google Analytics when something of significance happened on your webpage.
- Site Search – Setting Up
You will gain valuable data in the long run by setting up this quick setting called Site Search. Site Search comes into play with any website that include a search bar or box. Just run a search on your website, but keep the tab open. Your URL will be required. Next, traverse to your GA Admin menu and under View, click on View Settings. Search for Site Setting and toggle it to On. This will track any searches made on your website.
- Viewing Google Analytics data
What good would all the data collected do, if you cannot access it simply. Fortunately, you can. Every time you log into GA, your Audience Report will pop up. If you own more than one website, you will be redirected to the list of websites and you can choose a particular site and check its traffic from there. Google Analytics offer more than 50 different reports on your websites so make sure you explore what it can do and what you desire to know. Let’s mention the most popular ones.
- Most Used Types of Google Analytics Reports
- Audience reports. This tells you a lot about the visitors that visit your site (age, gender etc.)
- Acquisition reports. This report tells you all about what brought visitors to your page.
- Behaviour reports. This report focuses on everything content related.
- Conversions. Your Goals will tell you here how many conversions your webpages have received.
- Shortcuts and emails. While not strictly a report it is important to full utilize the shortcuts on GA as it can get cluttered. You can access the shortcut to quickly access a particular report or have that report be mailed to you on regular basis.
That’s it! These were just a few steps and tips on how to start with Google Analytics. Of course, there is a lot more to be said, but for starters this will do just fine. When you will explore the GA on your won you will find more and more useful things to do.