Google Analytics is an incredibly powerful and useful tool that can help you better understand your audience. It can track how visitors use and engage with your site, as well as gain insights that you can use to drive improvements in conversions.
Google Analytics has come a long way since it was launched in 2005. As the science of data is getting better and better, so are ways of leveraging it for profit. Today, Google Analytics 4 is the latest installation of Google Analytics. This new version has some excellent tools and capabilities that can be used by website owners to identify new opportunities and get better results than ever before.
Google Analytics can tell you some amazing things about your website performance. Since not many people know how useful it can be, here are 7 things Google Analytics can do for you.
Google Analytics doesn’t just allow you to see who has viewed your site in the past, it also allows you to see how many people are on your site right now, in real time! Visit the Real-Time report to view how many visitors are looking at your website right now, the country they’re searching from, and to see how they’re engaging with your website content.
While you can’t find out exactly who is visiting your site, the Audience report within Google Analytics lets you learn a lot about them. This report is pretty comprehensive, giving you information such as your users’ age, gender, interests, profession, and geographic location. You can use this information to better understand them and create messaging that speaks to their interests and needs. This is an especially useful tool when it comes to customising your content and voice to better engage your audience’s interest.
If your website has a search feature, the Site Search feature in Google Analytics will let you see what terms your site visitors are entering in the search box, and whether they’re finding what they’re looking for. This is a great way to keep tabs on whether your site’s content is meeting your audience’s wants and needs.
Google’s In-Page Analytics tool will list all the internal links on your site. What this will do is tell you which links were most popular with visitors. This gives you insights into where to place key calls to action, and which pages might need a little TLC and updating to increase your user engagement.
Google’s Users Flow report shows you how visitors travel through your site, including what page they start on, how many visit a second page, and what order they view pages in. It maps out where they start and how they move through your site, even where they exit your site. For example if you have a large number of people exiting your site on your contact page, perhaps there is an issue with the page or another reason why people are failing to contact you – the user flow report will allow you to flag this.
In the behaviour section of Google Analytics, select ‘Site Content’ then ‘All Pages’ to see a list of all site pages in order of popularity. You can sort the list by number of page views, average amount of time spent on the page, number of visitors that enter the site through that page, and more. What this tells you is what your most popular pages are.
Hopefully you already have a mobile-friendly and fully responsive website. But if not, the Mobile section of the Audience report will tell you what devices your site visitors are using, and what percentage of your audience is accessing your website from a smartphone or tablet. This will give you an indication of how many of your users are viewing your website design from their phones.
So, that’s our breakdown of seven things Google Analytics CAN do. However, there is often a misunderstanding of what Google Analytics can’t do, so we’ve also put together a brief summary and breakdown of four things Google Analytics CAN’T do:
Google Analytics can tell you a lot about the people who visit your site, but it won’t tell you who they are. Google Analytics cannot track individual users. You can find out how old they are, where they live, and much more, but not their name, IP address, company, or any other identifiable information.
With Google Analytics, you can only see data from the time you started tracking your site – you can’t go back in time and see traffic and other information from before Google Analytics was installed.
You can get extremely detailed information on what your site visitors do on your site, including what pages they visit, how long they stay there, what buttons they click. But once they leave your site, you can’t track what other sites they visit and what they do there.