Why is web analytics and tracking so important?
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The idea behind web analytics is quite simple: you want to know who comes to your website, where they are coming from, and what they are doing.
Just like in many other aspects of business, once a large amount of data becomes available, patterns will start to emerge. Your site analytics helps you to catch those patterns. In turn, it will also help you with the design and development of your marketing campaigns.
Attracting potential customers to your website is not an easy task. It is often costly and time-consuming. That’s why it is important to know what your visitors actually do when they interact with your content.
Not only does this process have the potential to increase leads and conversions, but it can also help to increase your search engine rankings. Given this, it is no surprise that Google provides some powerful analytical tools for free.
Thanks to services like Google Analytics (GA), you can start analyzing the behavior of your visitors completely free of charge. GA can be set up fairly easily by signing up for a free account here and then installing a little bit of code on your website.
After setting up a free account, it is important to set up Goals in GA to track your conversion funnels. There is much more that you can learn from analytics than you might initially think.
If you need help setting up Google Analytics for your website, you can apply for a free analytics and tracking consultation with one of our digital marketing experts. You can also download our free Analytics and Tracking guide.
Why is web analytics important?
Google’s website analytics collects data in the form of numbers. These numbers offer a ton of great knowledge once you know how to read them. This is also very true when it comes to web traffic.
Web analytics can tell you which days your clients buy most often, and which days they stay away from your website. There are reports that can tell you which articles on your blog are the most interesting to your visitors, giving you hints when it comes to creating future content.
Numbers can also tell you whether your online sales funnels are performing well and help you improve them.
The beauty of the Internet is that you don’t have to operate blindfolded. You can track almost every move of your visitors once they end up on your website, like page views, clicks, and more. Even better, you can find out where your visitors are coming from.
Website analytics is a very powerful tool that can be used to increase your search engine rankings, visitors, and leads.
Website Analytics & Tracking Guide
How do you measure your traffic?
There are two main pieces when it comes to user tracking:
Where your website visitors come fromThe moment a visitor lands on your website, you can learn a lot about them right away. These are a couple of questions that Google Analytics can answer about your visitors:
- Where are they physically located? (continent, country, state, city)
- What equipment do they use? (desktop or mobile devices, Mac or Windows, Chrome or Safari, etc.)
- How old are they? What is their gender?
- Where did they come from? (website, Google search, or a click on a Facebook ad)
Even if some of these bits of information don’t seem useful to you, don’t disregard them right away. There is a lot of value in the smallest details.
Take time to dig deep into the data to find out at what time of the day and what day of the week mobile users fill out form submissions most often, or what partner sites refer the most valuable traffic to your website. Let the data drive your website design.
Visitor behavior (what they do while on your site)The second section consists of everything on-site:
- Which web pages did they visit?
- How long did they stay on your website?
- Which page did they ‘land’ on, and which one was the last they’ve visited?
- Did they submit a contact form (which you had set up as one of the goals)?
Thanks to web analytics, you can find out which of your online campaigns are the most successful. On the other hand, you can also identify any problems on your pages. Analytics gives you the insight to analyze the way that users progress through your content and how they interact with it.
You can analyze your landing pages and other parts of your site to find out what is most successful with specific demographics. The possibilities are endless, but it is important to find out which parts of analytics are most important for your online business.
Other ways of tracking users online
Analyzing statistical data is great for inferring facts and getting insights on a macro scale, but you can also focus on each individual visitor when you analyze your traffic. Web analytics tools like Hotjar, LuckyOrange, and ClickTale offer tools and methods to track each visitor’s actions, even in real-time.
You can gain a lot of important insight to improve your website visitors’ experience and reduce your bounce rate. In turn, this will also help to increase your search engine ranking.
These tools can record mouse movements and other interaction with your website and then let you replay it later on. By looking at these key performance indicators, you might be able to see problems that users are having on your website.
For instance, you might find out that a ‘Buy Now’ button doesn’t work on certain browsers. You might also see that viewing your website on a low speed connection creates problems for your visitors.
Another tool worth mentioning that is provided by these services are heat maps - visual representations of clicks and mouse movements on your website. The warmer the color on the heat map, the more popular the element is.
One common finding is that people like clicking on photos of other people (it’s just a thing we do). With this in mind, you might want to add a link on photos to make your funnels and ROI more successful.
If you need need help figuring out which tracking tools will help your website, you can apply for a free analytics and tracking consultation with one of our digital marketing experts. You can also download our free analytics and tracking guide.
Other ways of tracking users online
Web analytics and tracking are great tools. They provide a lot of data and are a great vault of information about your users and how they interact with your website.
It is important to remember, though, that just recording them is not enough. You need to spend time analyzing that data to really make those numbers work for you. Dig through the reports and create custom ones that help you find the most useful bits of information.
Use it properly, and you will find a way to make your website convert better and rank higher on Google.
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