Anyone who has an online company and doesn’t bother to religiously check their Google Analytics stats is not just missing a trick they are in fact missing out on the life support system of their business. Web site stats can be compared to the human body in not so much that ‘your heel bone is connected to your knee bone’ as that your visitors are connected to your keywords and your bounce rate is connected to your income.
Get the picture? If you don’t know if visitors are leaving your site in droves how can you put it right? Correctly used Google Analytics is one of the most useful tools on the web. It may not be one hundred percent accurate but it is as near as damn it to feeding you vital information about your site visitors.
For instance, by having an idea what terms and phrases are commonly used by your customers you would have an idea what key phrases and terms you should concentrate on. It is rather like knowing what would be the most effective bait to get more customers to come to your website. Popular keywords or keyword phrases that people are searching for will tell you a heck of a lot about them.
If you can build up an intimate picture of how your target audience operates, what motivates them emotionally, what they need and how their problem impacts on their life in real, external and tangible ways, the easier it is to succeed in that market. All aspects of your business are derived from your understanding of your customer, and if you are working off of assumptions, you’re making mistakes and not likely to be enjoying the level of success you could.
Google Analytics is your best friend since each day it tells you what countries your visitors came from, how long they stayed on each page and which were the most popular pages they visited on your site. If visitors, for example, seem to land on your site and then quickly leave, it might be time to add some compelling content to your site. If your site becomes an authority on a specialised subject it could pull in more traffic – but you won’t know if your ploy is working unless you check your analytics and hopefully see an upward trend in visitors.
Also by knowing which of your products are commonly searched for, you would be able to add a new set of relevant terms and phrases to increase your visibility on the web. These key terms and phrases would be very target specific since they are directly sought after by customers, you are then assured that your site will be visited.
Search terms that are used and translate into sales are what you need which once again illustrates the point of using Google Analytics since this is the only way you can ‘watch’ what visitors are doing on your site. Which page are they arriving by? Which page are they leaving by? Do they move round your site and if not why not? Are you failing to keep visitors long enough to make a sale?
Google Analytics will tell you which countries are giving you most of your visitors, which is your top content, how many page views you get each day, your top landing pages, your most common exit pages and probably most important of all what the bounce rate is for your site. A high bounce rate equates to a low income rate!
Another great is the traffic sources data which keeps you informed of your traffic breakdown. In other words what is the source of your traffic? Is it direct repeat traffic or is it mainly made up from new visitors that come from search engine searches? Or does it come from referring sites and if so which are the most reliable referring sites or links? Armed with all of this ammunition means that you are much more likely to be able to get out on the web, attract visitors to your site and keep them there until you make substantial sales.
There is no doubt about it, Google Analytics is a great e-commerce tool and, what is more, it is completely free. If you are not using it you are missing a great opportunity to track your visitors and establish the user pattern on your site. On the other hand if you are already using it, ask yourself whether you have a quick glance at the stats once or twice a week or do you put time aside each day to fully analyse exactly where you visitors have come from and which pages they depart from.
The latter will tell you a lot about your overall site’s appeal and whether visitors move around your site and if so which pages do they gravitate to on a regular basis. If visitors land and leave almost immediately you have a big problem you need to fix. Perhaps they are arriving via the wrong keywords and are disappointed with what they find. At the end of the day only your analytics can give you the true picture.