If we asked you “what’s driving leads to your website?” could you tell us? Possibly not. At VMS we estimate that around 65% of small business owners are yet to get Google Analytics set up, are not analysing web data, and do not understand how their website performs.
But why does this matter? Put simply, you’ve spent an awful lot of time, energy and budget publishing your website. If you can’t track who visits, how many visit, from where they visit, what they view when they visit, and what drives them to purchase then you’re operating blind.
DID YOU KNOW? Google Analytics is considered to be the most powerful web analytics application. Plus, it’s entirely free. What’s not to love?
If you, or the business you manage marketing for, falls into our 65% then it’s high time you get Google smart. Find out what’s working website wise… and what’s not.
So, here’s a roundup of our Super 6 Google Analytics tools, and a note on why we think they rock:
1 // Behaviour tracking
Sounds a little bit ‘Big Brother’, but understanding your audience can really help you to tailor your site to their quirky behaviours. For example, if your Google Analytics report consistently show that most of your online visitors arrive on your site via your Facebook page, then it’s a straightforward decision to invest more in Facebook. Likewise, if a big fat zero is consistently reported against Twitter you may consider pulling resource away from that channel.
2 // Custom your dashboard
Analytics 5 includes an incredible tool that enables businesses to create custom dashboards. This means that you can decide what top line info you see upon log in, which metrics take priority, and how the information is displayed (graph, chart, table etc.).
3 // Flag up patterns
Google Analytics has a really helpful feature that allows you to create notes on specific days. For example, imagine you posted a new free webinar to your Facebook page. If you made a note stating that on the specific day in Google Analytics then you can look back on web traffic patterns and track whether that particular webinar delivered results. You’d know to look out for a spoke in traffic. Equally, you could do the same if you had any unexpected downtime, which would likely result in a loss of traffic.
4 // Get to know your visitors
The visitors overview is a straightforward overview of all traffic to your website. From the days number of visitors, unique visitors, and page views to averages for each too. As well as this Google Analytics also reports on how much time your visitors spend on your site, and which pages they are visiting and in which order. Our small business clients find this section to be an invaluable tool, providing a stellar top line overview of how their site is performing; real time.
5 // Seek out ‘real’ fans
Analytics cleverly enables you to monitor new vs returning visitors. As well as how often, and how recently visitors return to your site, and how engaged they are once they arrive there. Start to track a large percentage of visitors returning frequently, and you can feel confident that you’re developing a community of real fans. It’s this community who you can count on, perhaps approaching them with ‘recommend a friend’ promotions, or new product reviews.
6 // Direct your traffic
Think of your traffic sources overview as the Border Control Force of your website. Through it you’ll understand where traffic is coming from, how strong your SEO is, whether your incoming links are performing, and whether AdWords is working.
Added to this it also highlights blind spots, so that you can be in control of traffic flow and anticipate future problems.
Top tip – When creating your traffic sources try to spread the load. Just like client business, you don’t want all your eggs in one basket as this could leave you exposed. Best practice is to keep any one source under 50%. If things change (such as a change in Google algorithm) then it’s fairly easy to switch things around to compensate.
DID YOU KNOW? Google Analytics integrates with other Google programmes such as AdWords.
If you’d like to begin putting Google Analytics to work for your business get in touch. Our team can help you custom your dashboard, and carefully consider the metrics you need to ensure your website performs, and your online investment delivers.
- Mark Smith from The Guardian explains the role of Google Analytics for business
- Small Business Marketing Advice site Marketing Donut explains why business owners should seek out the help of a digital marketing agency that understands Google Analytics