There is no way to know how well a website is attracting visitors unless you have the ability to measure the traffic. And, without being able to analyze how and what is attracting those visitors, it becomes near to impossible to establish logical goals.
Google Analytics is the sliced bread of internet marketing, especially with Big Data now more readily available for small businesses. The first question you need to clarify is what you want your website to do for your business. It could be as simple as selling a product or as complicated as teaching a course in global economics.
The purpose of the foundation is to measure your success. Once you have one clearly defined goal, you can begin to analyze who, what, where and when visitors are dropping by and how you can improve the number of purchases made.
Using Data for Goal Success
The amount of raw data provided by these tools is enormous– and using this information to improve your website and reach your conversion rate objectives is the prime directive. One of the most useful features in Google Analytics is Event Tracking to:
- Discover which ads are getting the highest number of hits – allowing you to eliminate ads that are failing.
- Discover the type of visitor that is clicking on your ads – reassess your view of your own demographics.
- Discover preferred placement and style of your “sign up” forms for newsletters, email updates or new product announcements – then, make the placement consistent on each page**
** According to multiple surveys, including one by Google, ads and sign up forms that pop up when a visitor enters your site or after 30-seconds on your site are the most despised. They don’t want to be asked to sign up for a newsletter when they don’t have any idea whether you provide information that they want in the first place.
Instead of filling in the form, they leave your site never to return again – ever! There is another issue with this pop-up forms: you cannot optimize your site for mobile devices with pop-ups and banners flying all over the place.
How to Amplify Google Analytics Value
The GA report that is available is fairly straightforward, but if you don’t know what you are looking at or looking for, it seems to only tell you that someone dropped by your site on Wednesday at 5 a.m.
In order to get the most out of Google Analytics, combine it with Google Webmaster Tools. This allows you a more in depth view of who, what, where and why you are or are not getting the conversion rate you need.
- How many search query impressions.
- Where your search query position places in Google.
- How many incoming links to your site.
- What door visitors are using to get to you.
- Number of clicks leading to % of clickthroughs.
The number “links” pointing to your website are like personal references for strangers. While Google has penalized some linking activity, a natural incoming link is given a positive.
The greatest weight for ranking purposes in Hummingbird is a combination of content-plus-incoming links from “natural” or “organic” sources. In other words – buying links is the worst thing you can do to rank in Google.
Sadly, Bing does not provide users with a similar tool to see how their sites are ranking there. Bing puts nearly all its ranking value on links. As such, it’s important to balance the number of outgoing links with incoming links plus organic links in order to rank in Google, Bing and Yahoo.
Knowing how to analyze data and make recommendations that will optimize your site involves combinations of complex information. For professional SEO assistance, you can choose to contact me and I’ll be happy to help you!