What are the benefits of using Google Analytics? The popular tool is often installed by website developers, but many business owners don’t understand how to use it or what it does. Some aren’t even aware that it’s functional on their site. Those in the know understand that it’s a roadmap to online success.
Here are 8 reasons to use Google Analytics.
It Lets You Know How People Found Your Site
How are visitors arriving at your website? They may have found it through organic search, social media, referral, email, paid search, display, or simply by typing in your URL. Like an old wise fisherman, the savvy website owner likes to know where the bites are coming from. The insights gained from Google Analytics will allow you to make data-driven decisions and invest your time and energy in the areas that are likely to net the biggest return. Otherwise you’re essentially flying blind.
Google Analytics Allows You to Track User Behaviour
Understanding the behaviour of those who visit your site allows you to continuously optimize your site for conversions. Which pages do people visit most? How long does the average visitor stay? How many pages do they visit before leaving? It’s all about user experience and populating your sales funnel, and even subtle upgrades to your user journey or web copy can pay dividends.
Businesses will often create various landing pages, with each corresponding to a different form of advertising. This will allow them to understand the behaviours of those who arrived at the site via social media, as opposed to those who heard a radio ad or saw a billboard. Over time these findings will allow you to fine tune all aspects of your marketing in order to appeal to various audiences.
You’ll Be Able to Set Goals and Follow Your Progress
Another reason to use Google Analytics is the ability it gives you to measure your progress against benchmarks. If you’re fond of SMART goals (and really, who isn’t?) you already know that the M stands for measurable. Do you want more people reading your blogs for at least two minutes? (We do, and you have, thanks!) Maybe you want more video clicks, or for a higher % of those who begin filling out a subscription form to actually submit them. A web host without Analytics is like a golfer with no scorecard, they’ll never really know if they’re improving or not.
Google Analytics Tracks User Demographics
Analytics will provide you with valuable information about visitors, or at least those who have opted in on data collection. Understanding the location, time zone, language, gender, device, and browser used by your visitors will help you cater to them more effectively.
You’ll Make Better Content Creation Decisions
Do Peak Ed Designs’ readers prefer our posts written about Google Analytics? Or the ones on generating great content ideas to get unstuck? Thanks to GA, we know the answer, and we don’t have to follow people around creepily looking over their shoulder. Various types of content (blog posts, videos, infographics) score better with different types of visitors. The same goes for different topics. Track the data and begin filling your content calendar confidently.
You Can Monitor Internal Site Searches
If your site has search functionality, Google Analytics will provide you with the queries your visitors have entered. This will help you understand what they’re looking for, while alerting you to information that may be missing from your website, or at least not intuitively found.
You’ll Be Able to Identify Problems with Your Website
Problem diagnosis is another reason to use this tool. Are people leaving your site without visiting a second page, sending your bounce rate skyward? Is there a certain page that tends to be the exit point from which visitors leave the site? Before you can solve these problems, you must first identify them.
This one probably needs little in the way of explanation. One of the most popular aspects of Google Analytics is its price tag, or, actually, its lack of one. Sure there’s a bit of a learning curve if you want to access and properly analyze all of the data, but getting started is not excessively difficult, nor will it hurt your pocket book.
Privacy Concerns and the Future of Analytics
Privacy has become an increasing concern amongst the general public in recent years, forcing Google and other analytical platforms to respond. Staying in compliance with changing laws and social expectations has led to updates to the way that information is collected and tracked. Internet users and web browsers are becoming increasingly stingy, which makes it important to stay current on data collection techniques and best practices.
In late 2020, Google released ‘Google Analytics 4’, describing it as ‘privacy-first’ tracking. Gaps in information, often the result of cookie opt-outs, are being filled in using machine learning. While the Analytics platform, as well as data-tracking itself, continues to evolve, it will remain relevant in one form or another for the foreseeable future.
A website is not like a painting to be completed, hung on the wall, and admired. It’s a living, dynamic creation that should be continuously monitored, maintained, and improved. At Peak Ed Designs, we believe in creating websites that help your business grow. That’s why we offer personalized web solutions that fit your company, as well as maintenance packages to ensure that your site remains a healthy contributor to your bottom line on an ongoing basis.
I want a website that is optimized to help my business grow!