Using Google analytics can be a daunting experience for the uninitiated, and consequently many business owners forego it altogether. This is a mistake. Making friends with this magnificent tool is the first step understanding how and why your website is performing the way it is, and gives you tremendous insight as to how to correct things moving forward.
Everyone has to start somewhere, so in order to keep things simple, we’ve knocked it down to 5 reports within analytics you’ll want to watch. This is workable, and will give you a glimpse into just how powerful this tool can be for you.
5 Analytics reports to keep an eye on
Search queries – Analytics used to show more keyword data than it does now, but a very useful way to get some of this intelligence is by viewing the search queries report. You should have your Google Webmaster account linked to your Analytics for this to work properly. After you do that, you can see very valuable data such as the keywords you are currently ranking for, the amount of impressions they get, and the click-through rate on that page.
Mobile usage – Knowing how well your pages are doing with mobile devices is important data to know when nearly 50% of all traffic is emanating from these.
Referral data – This report shows you which sites are sending you referral traffic. This is good to know, and if that traffic slows in the future you may want to look into why it is happening.
Session data – This has to do with the amount of time a visitor spends on your site. This is important data to be aware of, as the length of time a visitor is actively engaged on your site has a big impact on your page performance in the search rankings.
Raw page views and exits – This is how many times your pages are viewed. Closely related is the pages where visitors exit the site from: you want to know this and investigate why.
Keeping a watchful eye on these basics can help keep you informed as to how well your pages are doing, and go a long way toward helping you better optimize your business.