The data you receive from Google Analytics is amazing. When you open your first few reports, you’re “wowed” by the details and stunned by the targeted results. It has a “cool” factor that can’t be denied. In reality, it doesn’t really matter how cool the information is. It’s what you do with that data that really counts. To make Google Analytics or any analysis of your website worthwhile, you have to act on the data. By studying the data on a monthly or bi-monthly basis, you can make decisions that will change the way people use your site. For example:
- Bounce rates – examine the bounce rates for each page. If they are high and people aren’t staying on the page for any length of time, consider revising the content with something more meaningful or attention-getting. Or, add a call to action to get people engaged.
- Compare the popularity of landing pages and exit pages – you can keep a tally of a few different landing pages to see which ones have the highest click-through rates, and adjust your support marketing accordingly.
- Contact forms – pay special attention to information about your contact forms by setting up what are called goals. If the form is abandoned more often than completed, you know something is turning your potential leads away. It could be the complexity or length of the form, the information you’re requesting or the time it takes the form to load. Make some changes and see what happens. Also, note the paths most frequently taken to get to the contact pages. If getting there in two clicks is what you want, then use the research you find to help reach that objective.
- Referral sources – see where your visitors are coming from on the Internet. Are they typing your website URL into the address bar directly (direct visit), clicking on a keyword search result (organic) or clicking a link on another site (a referral)? This information can help you develop ideas for marketing partnerships, promotions with referral sources or some ways to change your site to meet the needs of a new audience.
We use Google Analytics frequently to analyze website visitor data and measure Internet marketing effectiveness. By using the information you already get from your analytics, you have a factual basis to justify changes in your website content, design or navigation. Try it and see what happens!