A Business Manager’s Guide to Google Analytics

2018/08/06 08:00

analytics for business managers

Important Google Analytics metrics that every business manager should be paying attention to.

If you have ever stared blankly at an online report from your marketing department, this is the guide for you.

Google Analytics (GA) is a key tool for every business as it provides invaluable data and information that can boost your turnover and help you make better business decisions. At a first glance, however, the GA platform can seem a bit overwhelming, especially if a lot of the metrics aren’t terms that you deal with on a daily basis.

Fortunately, as a business manager, there’s definitely no need to understand GA inside and out but there are a few key metrics that you should be aware of.

The purpose of Google Analytics reports

Google Analytics reports matter because they give businesses in-depth insights into how consumers perceive and interact with their brand online.

Having access to this data will help your business establish the following:

  • How relevant you are to your target audience
  • Who your target audience is and where they reside
  • Whether your website is providing customers with the right information or enough information
  • How easy it is to convert or get in touch with your company via your website
  • Where most of your traffic is coming from in order to optimize promotional efforts
  • What problems your customers are experiencing, what pain points they have and whether your brand is effectively solving those problems
  • The types of devices that customers are using to access your site

These are just a few of the insights that brands can garner from GA but what are the metrics that have a direct impact on turnover?

Key Google Analytics Metrics for Business Managers

Below are the metrics that all businesses managers should understand:

  • Acquisition

How to get there: Acquisition > Overview

By generating an acquisition overview, you’ll have access to data on where the majority of your website traffic is coming from. This is important because if you know that 60% of your traffic is coming from Twitter but only 8% is coming from your Google Search campaigns, it would make sense to put more budget towards promotional efforts on Twitter. The Acquisition overview will give you data on:

  • Organic Search Traffic: Users who found your site via Google or another search engine
  • Referral Traffic: Websites that aren’t social media sites that sent traffic to your site
  • Direct Traffic: Users who typed your website’s URL directly into a browser
  • Social Traffic: Website traffic that stemmed from social media platforms
  • Paid Search Traffic: Any website traffic from paid search campaigns

If you have an e-commerce site, you will also be able to track your conversions from each traffic source.

  • Goals

How to get there: Conversions > Goals > Overview

*Keep in mind that your marketing team will have to set these goals up first

Setting up Goals in Google Analytics will allow you to track a user’s journey through your site. Goals can be linked to almost anything too. From completing a form that leads to a download to successfully purchasing a product, goals will show you how many users are completing their journey on your site.

Not only will this be able to highlight potential issues in the customer journey but it will also show you which products, services, and offerings are most appealing to your target audience. So, which metrics matter when reviewing the flow of your goals?

Basically, you want to pay attention to the pages where users are dropping off as this will tell you where there may be problems on your site and in the user journey.

  • Demographics

How to get there: Audience > Overview

Taking the time to see whether the demographics of the users visiting your website actually match your customer profiles could be an important exercise. You may even find that you need to adjust your customer personas or add a new persona to the mix.

The demographic overview report will give you data on:

  • Customer gender and average age
  • The segments they fall into and what their interests
  • Where your customers are located
  • How many of them are returning to your site or are brand new visitors
  • The devices they’re using to access your site
  • Landing Pages

How to get there: Behavior > Site Content > Landing Pages

Knowing what your top landing pages are and how visitors are engaging with them will give you an idea of their goals once they land on your site and whether your site is delivering on their expectations. Once you open an overview of your top landing pages, look at the following metrics:

  • Landing Page: The page in question
  • Sessions: The total number of times visitors have engaged with that page over a specified period of time. The more sessions a page has, the more popular it is or the more likely it is that it’s showing up in the search results
  • Bounce Rate: This will tell you how many visitors reached a page but left almost immediately. A high bounce rate indicates that a page isn’t meeting user expectations and requirements
  • Avg. Session Duration: This is the average amount of time that visitors are spending on that particular page. If they’re spending a significant amount of time on a page, it could indicate that the information or content is meeting their needs

Again, if you are running an e-commerce site, you will be able to see which pages are resulting in the most conversions. It’s important to look at the pages that are performing well as well as those that are performing poorly so that you can apply any learnings from your high-performance pages.

If you want further assistance with understanding your Google Analytics reports and how they apply to your business, KOBIT simplifies data collection and analysis so that you can focus on applying the feedback from your reports.