Think Google Analytics is just web traffic statistics? Think again. Gaining insight into your web traffic can inform your web marketing strategy and turn visitors into clients.
When you log into your Google Analytics (GA) account you’ll immediately see a dot-to-dot line graph and corresponding numbers tracking the web traffic – visitors, sessions and pageviews – for a given period. Here are three useful metrics for that traffic and how to use them.
1.Analyse traffic sources
How do your visitors find you? On the left of the GA screen you’ll see a heading: ‘Acquisition’. It will break down the sources of your traffic and the numbers from different sources.
You can find out whether search engines, social media or other websites generate the most visits; perhaps people come directly to you by typing in your URL, or arrive via other direct sources, such as your e-newsletter? Delve and you will gain further insight, for example, what search terms on which search engines landed the most visitors, or which social media platform gave you the biggest signal boost.
Once you understand how people find you, you can use that knowledge to leverage value from your marketing efforts. You may find, for example, that LinkedIn content gives you more visitors than boosting a Facebook post.
2.Find out who’s visiting
GA knows a bit about the people who land on your website and that’s all delivered to you under ‘Audience’. You’ll see basic demographics such as age, gender, country and language, as well as the technology they use to access your site. Go even deeper with the subheading ‘Interests’ and find out what else Google knows about your visitors.
The ‘Affinity category’ shows how visitors align in peer groups, for example Technophiles or Avid Investors. It also reveals what they seek online, such as Education, Travel, Real Estate and so on, based on an aggregate of their online behaviour, including other searches they make and other sites they spend time on.
Use this information to ensure your website appeals to your target demographic. If you find your site strongly attracts a particular demographic and you want to broaden your appeal, you can make adjustments to try to acquire the visitors you want.
3.What your visitors do
Another aspect of traffic that deserves attention is what happens when a visitor comes to your site. The ‘Behavior’ section will show you popular traffic flows – for example, if they land on a certain blog post, do they then proceed to a similar post, or your contact page? – as well as popular landing and exit pages.
The time spent on your site should also indicate whether you’re providing compelling content, but be careful about this. If the Average Time on Page is low, it is not necessarily a bad thing. For instance, you could be attracting traffic to your contact page, which means visitors may convert to other methods of communication, such as email or phone, and may not stay long on the page.
Once you get a sense of how people move within your website, try different techniques to keep them there longer, or present visitors with a clear call to action.
As with any set of metrics, it’s best to analyse trends over time. Check back regularly, at least once a month, to see what effect your changes have had, then adjust and try new improvements. Google Analytics is an easy way to find out who visits you and why – information you can easily use to your advantage when casting the net for new clients.
Contact PLAN Australia for more ways to attract clients and drive business growth.