Curtesy of RazorSocial.com 

Digital marketing is all about testing, analyzing, and optimizing your activities to achieve better results. Without analytics, you are simply wandering around in the dark. Thankfully, there are some great tools out there that can help shine some light on your marketing performance.

  1. Set Up Google Search Console. Google Search Console is a free service that lets you identify and fix website problems. When Google crawls through your website and finds errors, it reports them in Google search console.  If you haven’t set this up already, you really need to.
  2. Use Google Tag Manager. Google tag manager provides a much easier way of managing all the marketing and analytics tags (snippets of Java code) that you have to add to your website from companies such as Facebook, Google, and others. It’s a great tool and you should definitely consider using it.
  3. Identify your most popular posts. Use Google Analytics to find your top performing posts and make sure they are regularly updated and frequently shared. To do this, you need to create the Landing Pages report to see which of your blog posts have the highest page views over a specified time period.
  4. Identify your Bounce Pages. Finding your top posts is important, but so is figuring out which pages on your website are bleeding visitors so you can do something about it. If your bounce rate on a certain page goes over 50%, something is definitely wrong. Once you identified the bounce pages, it’s time to start working on them to improve your website’s ability to retain visitors.
  5. Study Engaged Traffic. It’s important to look at the visitors who stay more than 10 minutes on your website and visit more than one page. This data is important because it shows you the most engaged visitors. You can find this information in GA under Audience Engagement.
  6. Track Mobile Visitors. More and more people are accessing the Web on their mobile devices, which means more opportunities for visits and conversions. This is why it’s important to track mobile traffic. You can access this data in GA under Audience > Mobile > Devices. Here you’ll be able to see which visitors are using which mobile devices to access your site, plus you’ll get the data on their average page views, time spent on the website, etc. This data will give you insight into mobile users interests and preferences, you’ll be able to compare mobile vs. desktop conversions, and much more.
  7. Create custom dashboards in Google analytics. Custom dashboards are really helpful if you want to filter out information to only see those metrics and statistics that are most relevant to you. For example, you can create a dashboard that monitors your users’ behavior on your website. You can easily set up your custom dashboards from the Reporting section of your GA account.
  8. Keep tabs on your website speed. The speed of your website is very important. A lower speed means a higher bounce rate and reduced conversion rate. Google provides a speed test and rates both desktop and mobile version of your site out of 100%. If Google gives you a low score, you can be sure that they will take this into account in search results. Click here to test it out!
  9. Create Segments in Google Analytics. Google Analytics allows you to create segments which are basically individual filters that you configure and apply to your reports so you can see specific data. This can be very useful for ad-hoc analysis or ongoing analysis of data. For example, you could create a segment for traffic that was generated from a social media platform.
  10. Add annotations to the Google Analytics chart. Let’s say you are running a campaign and you start seeing some massive spikes in traffic. In a year’s time, you won’t remember what caused it. This is where adding annotations to your traffic chart in GA comes in handy. In the future when you look at your reports, you’ll understand why there was a spike in traffic on a certain day.
  11. Set up conversion funnels. A funnel on your website is a sales process which consists of multiple pages or steps that your visitors must take to fulfill your goal. When you set up your funnel, you can track the traffic that goes through your funnel and analyze where people are dropping out to correct any possible issues.
  12. Set up Intelligence Events. Imagine if you got a sudden spike or drop in traffic, would you like to know about it? Google Analytics Intelligence Events Reports allow you to set up alerts to get notified when unusual or important things happen on your website, e.g. a huge increase in sales on a particular product page.
  13. Real-time Google Analytics. Google is tracking your visitors’ activity as it happens on your site, and you may want to take advantage of this and really dig into their interactions, check goal conversions on the website, etc. A common use of real-time analytics is for monitoring the immediate effects on traffic from a new blog, social media post, ad campaign, etc.
  14. Compare Historical Traffic Trends. Being aware of what’s happening now is important, but so is looking back at your traffic reports to identify historical trends. Doing this can help you identify patterns and understand how traffic can change over time.
  15. Filter out your IP address – When you are browsing your own website this is recorded in GA as a visitor on your site, so it’s recommended to exclude your IP address. Check out the admin -> filters section.