Google Analytics Key Metrics for Online Schools

2018/08/15 03:21


The metrics that every online school should be focusing on to grow their site.

Whether you’ve just launched an online school or you’re looking to improve your current website, Google Analytics is a highly-effective tool for finding out exactly what works and which parts of your site can be improved.

By understanding how visitors are interacting with your site, you can make the kinds of adjustments and improvements that will appeal to visitors and encourage them to not only spend more time on your site but convert too.

Key website metrics for online schools

Below are the metrics that you should be focusing on if you’re running an online school:

  • Total visits: This metric shows how many users have accessed your website over a specific period of time. Knowing how many visits your website is receiving will give you a good idea of potential conversion rates and will help you set new goals that you can work towards.
  • Page views: Page views will indicate how many pages have been viewed by website visitors over a specific period of time. This metric will give you an idea of how easily visitors can access the content on your site, with a higher number of page views speaking to the quality of your content.  When reviewed in conjunction with bounce rate and landing pages though, page views become even more valuable as a metric.
  • Bounce rate: A high bounce rate indicates that visitors aren’t finding what they’re looking for and once you look at the bounce rate for individual pages, you’ll be able to see which pages aren’t delivering in terms of meeting user expectations.
  • Landing pages: Reviewing your most popular landing pages will give you an idea of the layouts and content that’s working the best so that it can be applied to the pages that either aren’t receiving high amounts of traffic or that have high bounce rates.
  • Traffic sources: Knowing how visitors are reaching your online school will highlight marketing and communication opportunities. For example, if you find that you’re receiving a large percentage of traffic from social media, you can better focus your content and online marketing efforts on the channels that are driving the most traffic.
  • Devices: Determining which devices are used to access your site will give you the opportunity to optimize your site for those devices. For example, if your online school is mostly being accessed from mobile devices, you will need to make sure that your side is responsive and mobile-friendly at every level.
  • Site Search: Knowing how visitors are using the search function on your site will go a long way in helping you improve your online school. Knowing which terms visitors are using in their searches will not only highlight content opportunities but potential gaps or problems in the overall visitor journey too.

The benefits of Google Analytics Goals

analytics for schools

Another incredibly useful feature of the Google Analytics platform is Goals.

Google Analytics Goals allow you to track a visitor’s journey through your site, helping you to better understand the behavior that leads to conversions and where there might be gaps in the journey that cause visitors to drop off.

By using Goals in Google Analytics, you can answer some of these key questions:

  1. What are my key sources of website traffic?
  2. How many users are visiting my website every month?
  3. What improvements can I make to the user journey on my site?
  4. What is the frequency rate of visitors taking a specific action or engaging with content?
  5. What does an ideal conversion pathway look like on my site?

Online school website design tips

Now that you know which metrics are most important, here are a few suggestions for improving the design of your online school:

Re-evaluate your navigation

To begin with, your logo should always be linked to your home page to make it easy for a visitor to return to your home page whenever they need to.

Next, look at the number of links that are currently present in your menu. Research shows that website visitors are far more likely to make a decision when they’re presented with 7 links or less. When a user is presented with too many choices, it becomes overwhelming and they’re more likely to leave your site.

Find ways to simplify your website’s navigation, removing any unnecessary links.

Simplify your home page

Your home page should encourage visitors to move to the next step in the conversion process and should never overwhelm them.

Find ways that you can make your home page more useful and be engaging by providing your visitors with the most pertinent information and a clear call to action. It’s also important that your home page be visually appealing so re-evaluate the images and other media that you’re currently using. Does it truly appeal to your target audience?

Make your website ADA compliant

The Americans with Disabilities Act requires businesses to make their websites accessible to the disabled public. This means that certain requirements will need to be met.

This involves making certain changes that will make it easier for screen readers to access and navigate your site. You can find out more about how to make your online school ADA compliant here.

Highlight popular pages and sections

There are certain pages and sections of an online school that should be highlighted because they’re important to students.

Firstly, your school’s calendar should be easy to find and should contain accurate information such as important dates and events. Next, make it easy for students to find the contact details for your school as well as specific staff members.

Basically, if there are any important pages and features that your students will definitely utilize, make sure that they can easily be found.

Make it mobile-friendly

The majority of online users will perform searches and browse websites from mobile devices, one of the main reasons why Google has introduced mobile-first indexing.

Having a responsive website is no longer an option. Not only will it ensure that you’re providing your visitors with the best possible experience but it will help your online school rank better in the future too.

As with any site, optimization should be a top priority and an ongoing effort. Fortunately, tools such as Google Analytics make this a simple task.