Google Analytics is a fantastic free tool you can use to better understand your website and be more effective in your online marketing efforts. If your website strategy consists of “set it and forget it,” you are missing out on valuable opportunities to gain insight into your online impact. Google Analytics can help you answer questions like:
How many people visit my site each day?
Which pages of my website do they visit most?
Where is my web traffic coming from?
How much time do people spend on my site?
What pages do visitors exit my site from most?
You might be surprised by what you find. For instance, you might discover that more people come to your website from your Linkedin profile instead of a web search, in which case you might want to put more energy into optimizing your website for search. Finding the answers to these questions can help you to see how effective your website is, and make adjustments to your online strategy accordingly.
Google Analytics delivers a plethora of data on your website and can be slightly intimidating if you’re not familiar with it. To start, there are a few key metrics you can begin monitoring:
-Bounce rate. This refers to the percentage of people that come to a page on your website and then leave. Ideally, you want visitors to click to other pages on your site, meaning they’re interested in getting more information. A high bounce rate (generally something over 60-70%) may can indicate that your website is not well targeted toward the majority of people who visit it, or it may be difficult to navigate. Consider reviewing the pages with a high bounce rate keeping mind that they should be user-friendly, keyword-optimized for your target market, and direct people to other pages on your site through links.
-Top entry pages. Google Analytics can show you which pages of your site most visitors enter through. You might be surprised to find that your homepage is not necessarily your top entry page. This can give you some insight into which pages are giving visitors their first impression of your site so you can structure and design them accordingly.
-Top exit pages. Much like the entry pages, you can determine which pages visitors are most likely to leave your site from. By pinpointing these pages, you may be able to determine if there’s a specific reason people tend to leave your site. Maybe these pages have broken links, are poorly designed, have insufficient information, or otherwise function improperly. Once you understand why visitors are leaving your site, you can address those problems.