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Google Analytics - Which Key Reports Should I Really Be Using?

As a small business, time is often short and the interface of Google Analytics can be rather daunting at first glance! So which reports should you really be using how can you assess your overall website performance week by week in just a few minutes?

There are hundreds of reports within Analytics ranging from the most basic traffic reports to incredibly advanced data filters. The kind of report that you wish to view should really depend on your own site objectives. Some Webmasters are purely focused on traffic, others wish to know the number of leads, sales or sign ups that are produced through the site each month whereas others are more concerned with customer retention or the percentage of new visitors each month.

Google Analytics logooct112When you log in to your Google Analytics account and click “view reports” you will instantly see what we call the analytics dashboard. This dashboard is a quick summary of key site metrics such as visits, bounce rate and average time on site. You can slice  this data into customised date ranges by using the calendar feature in the top right of your screen.

It is very important to keep a close eye on these statistics, especially if you are conducting any marketing in the form of trade press adverts, exhibitions or email campaigns etc.. A particular event may trigger a huge increase in traffic and it is important to identify the effect that this has on your site visits, bounce rate and percentage of new traffic to the site.

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Similarly, you may be adding new keywords to your Pay Per Click campaign or optimising your site for new keywords – keep an eye on the bounce rate of the site in the weeks following this to ensure your are driving relevant traffic. An increase in bounce rate will often indicate that traffic is of poor quality or the landing page you are sending it to is not of sufficient relevance to maintain the interest of the site visitor.

If there is a desired action that you wish your visitor to undertake – for example, a purchase or a download, it is extremely important that you set up “goals” to track these actions. It is then possible to discover which keywords and traffic sources have driven the highest number of completed goals. Was it Google? Or Bing? Or perhaps a blog site or paid directory that you have recently decided to use.

Google analytics certainly takes time to master – but there is a wealth of information at your fingertips that will enable you to get the highest return out of your Website. If you want to learn more about how you can get the most out of tools such as Analytics, ask one of our Search Engine Marketing Management team today on 0845 456 1022 about our upcoming training courses.

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