We were originally going to call this blog ‘The what-the-hell-is-going-on-with-my-website/campaign/landing page checklist, but, that’s a little bit of a mouthful. This Google Analytics checklist covers the basics and first steps you should take if the chips are down on the old conversion front.
It’s reported that marketers are expected to spend over 11% of their total budget on analytics, however only 22% of marketers say they have data-driven marketing initiatives that are achieving significant results. This suggests there’s a slight disconnect with having the data, ready and willing, but not knowing exactly what to do with it.
Tip: deploy a Google Analytics audit before you begin any campaign or project, the information you can gain for the current performance of your website can hugely affect your future strategy.
Google Analytics is one of those wonderful tools, whereby you can get completely lost in the granularity of its data, however, if you don’t have the time, patience or inclination to while away your hours scrutinising page performances, here’s a few handy, go-to pointers:
First step, where is your traffic coming from? If you know this you can work backwards through each channel to gauge your visitor’s behavior and hopefully the reason behind it. Your traffic source from is a great indicator of the strength of your social presence, SEO strategy, site links etc. Use this to identify top performing social networks, improve your AdWords campaign and so on. Once you’re armed with this info, next is to find out what people are doing on page.
Tip: Be sure to set up goals and conversion tracking, you can easily see the path users took in order to convert
This is just a great visual representation of the behavior of the visitors on your site. It allows you to map journeys through your website and specific pages. Dependent on where the visitor starts, where they came from etc. should give you some good indication of page drop offs and potential opportunities certain pages present.
If there are pages with huge amount of drop offs, you may need to look at the UX of that page. Are there enough CTA’s available, enough compelling information etc.? Can you lead your visitors to any conversion pages, or relevant, interesting content?
Bounce rate & Exit rate
These two indicators tell us, for the most part, what is wrong with a page. If you’ve got a high bounce rate, your visitor immediately doesn’t like what they see, if you’ve got high exit, they’ve checked you out but decided they don’t need to go any further. You should consider where the traffic is coming from in relation to these metrics, it can tell you a lot about the message of that initial touch point and if there is a disconnect with that and the page they land on
Tip: set up filters on your account such as excluding your own IP address if you’re after accurate data
Date ranges & comparison
Often overlooked as a powerful tool or performance indicator, the comparison feature on the date range can give useful pointers as to what you may have been doing right a month ago that you aren’t doing now. Has there been a steep drop in traffic from a specific source? Are you no longer getting traffic from certain social channels if your content promotion has changed?
Tip: add in annotations as and when you do something considerable with your marketing, be it a press release or significant email campaign. No one wants to sift back through the archives to find out what caused that spike 6 months ago
Google Analytics is only part of the picture and this blog is a mere drop in the ocean when it comes to performance auditing and optimisation The data available should be used in every step of the way with regards to marketing. Google Analytics can tell you the quantitative side of things, but more often than not, the issue lies with a bigger element of the marketing plan.
If you would like a chat about where your sales/leads are coming from, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org, we’re more than happy to talk all things from strategy to bounce rate.