Any business owner in 2016 should now be aware that their customers are headed online. The demand to optimize a business’ online presence is not going to decline with the rate the technology has been expanding.
With that said, your business should attract customers, understand their problems and provide solutions efficiently with consumers seeking instant gratification. If you are a site owner, marketer or anyone interested in the revenue and you don’t have an analytics platform, then you will no doubt be left behind without analytics to support your marketing insights and behavior. To get started with data and analytics, it is first imperative to master the almighty Google Analytics.
Here are some great features every marketer or business owner should learn about:
Google Analytics Explained & Main Features to Learn Now
Google Analytics is a detailed analysis service that measures website activity and performance. It is a web analytics software developed, offered and maintained by Google. It provides a variety of insightful information for marketers, business analysts, and IT staff. It is easy to set up and does not require you to host your website with Google. There exist both free and paid services that show you the performance of your site and ad campaign. Analytics shows you the search engine activity on your site and how the strategies you are using are either working or need adjustments.
Feature of Google Analytics include:
- Advertising and Campaign Performance
- Analysis and Testing
- Audience Characteristics and Behavior
- Cross-Device and Cross-Platform Measurement
- Data Collection and Management
- Mobile Apps
- Product Integration
- Sales and Conversion
- Site and App Performance
Google Analytics Concepts You Need to Understand for Your Business
1. Site Search Analysis with Google Analytics
Tracking and studying various searches on your site is a valuable part of site analysis. Website search analysis can provide useful insights into what people are looking for from your site. If your site has a search bar, you need to ensure you are making the most out of this valuable report in Google Analytics. The site search reports provide data on the type of content people are looking for from your site.
2. Google Analytics Site Speed
- The page load-time for a sample of page views on your website
- The execution speed of the pages
- The speed of the browser in parsing the documents and making them available for interaction.
3. Data Collection and Management
With Google Analytics, data collection and management provides accurate insights into the customer that can be customized to your needs and get shared across your business. There are collection and management APIs that help you manage and collect data in scalable ways. The analytics measurement protocol measures digital platforms beyond web and apps.
The event tracking shows you how visitors interact with your pages and mobile apps. This is very important and helps for those websites that want to track downloads or video engagement. I had a client that built a whitepaper and wanted to increase brand exposure and subscribers to the blog. Event tracking was a great tool for comparing the ratio of those users that downloaded the white paper compared to the number of users that converted to the e-mail list.
Finally, The Google Tag Manager lets you quickly add and update website tags and mobile applications. This feature is great for marketers mainly as it has so much flexibility and speed of implementing. An example of mine was a client who wanted to test independent landing pages. We used Tag Manager to deploy quickly without the help of a developer to add the snippet of code and this proved to be very efficient.
4. Data Consolidation
Google presents business owners with an integrated solution that preserves data integrity, reduces friction and seamlessly connects disparate data sources. This helps business in their content management. The AdWords campaign imports data seamlessly to give you crucial information about what visitors do after they have clicked your ad. The AdSense will offer you insights on better ways to earn with relevant ads placed on your sites. The Google Display Network links your account to measure the success of campaigns.
5. Data Analytics and Reporting
Reports can be segmented and filtered out to reflect the actual needs of your business. The real-time views will let you know which new content is popular and how much traffic any new promotion is driving to your site. Acquisition reporting will help you understand user acquisition and traffic sources. The analytics will also provide you with audience reports and bench marking. The cohort analysis will give you insights into user retention and value while conversion reporting measures your sales, downloads, video plays and help you define your business goals.
More about Data Analytics and Reporting can be found at https://www.google.com/intl/en_uk/analytics/features/index.html
These are some basic steps to get you started using Google Analytics or researching what to learn first for business in 2016. What are your thoughts? What are the best options for your business?