The Basics of Your Website Analytics

It’s April, people! It was a long and rough winter, but we made it and we’re better Mid-Westerner’s for it! If you’re a weekend warrior like me, we can finally use all of that stored up energy to power wash the deck, go for a long run, dig in to your website analytics, plant a garden, re-seed the lawn…wait…back up…did you say, “dig in to your website analytics?”

Website Analytics Gives Direction To Your Web Strategy

Sure did! This month, we’re talking about why your site analytics matter. I’m going to start by talking about just that – why your analytics matter. I have so many clients approach me with comments like “I just feel like I’m getting less calls” and “are people even going to my website?” The response is always the same – are you looking at your site analytics and, if not, then let’s look at them together.

There’s a reason why we incorporate Google Analytics with every web build we complete. The data gleaned from your analytics dashboard is critical to analyzing your web user’s behavior and making strategic pivots in your web strategy. Every business is different, which means that your metrics of success will be different than ours when it comes to what we see in our respective analytics dashboards.

Understand Your Google Analytics Dashboard

First – the very genesis of a healthy analytics strategy is, well, making sure that your site is connected to your Google Analytics dashboard. Start here: Getting Started with Google Analytics. Once you’re connected and your dashboard has had some time to populate some data; get to know the core components of your analytics. Here’s a few helpful definitions and applications to get you started:

  • Users: The number of actual individual humans that have visited your website in a given time period. (sometimes called “unique visitors”)
  • Sessions: The number of actual visits to your website. Now, if your sessions are higher than your users; this means that some of your users viewed your website more than once!
  • Devices: This data tells you the type of screen they’re using to view your site. Depending on your industry, you’ll see some differentiation between desktop vs. mobile, but regardless of your industry, your site needs to be mobile friendly and responsive for every user that visits you on their phone or tablet.
  • Bounce Rate: The percentage of people who visit a single page on your site without digging any further. Depending on purpose of the page, a high/low bounce rate can be a good or bad result.

We’ve only scratched the surface here. Next time, we’ll chat about how we can take the data we have and incorporate it in to your web strategy. In the meantime, I’d love to talk to you about your analytics! They really do matter… so let’s look at the them together and get you on a path to a more strategic web plan!