Setting up Google Analytics
To begin using a Google Analytics account you need to first create a Gmail account. After you’ve created this head to https://analytics.google.com/ and log in with your Gmail address.
Once you sign in you’ll see the page displayed above with a “sign up” button on the right-hand side. Click on the button and the process will
begin. The set up of Google analytics is pretty straight forward, above is the list of details that you need to fill out:
Account Name – This is the name of the analytics account which you can call whatever you like, things such as the company name or an abbreviation is a good idea.
Website Name – This is just simply the name of the website, not the URL.
Website URL – You don’t have to include the “http://” just the basic URL.
Industry Category – Select the category that your website represents the best. This won’t change the way your data is collected but it will help google try and customise the way the report will look to you.
Reporting Time Zone – Choose the timezone that your business is operating in. Once you’ve filled out all of the details click “Get Tracking ID” to finish.
Now everything is from this end is set up it’s time to add the UA(Universal Analytics code) to your website. The platform I’m using is WordPress which makes this a quick and easy. To add this code you first need to download one of the various Google analytics plugin available
The one I always recommend using is the “Insert Headers and footers” plugin, head back to your Google analytics account and copy the tracking code from the main dashboard. Then go to your analytics plugin page like the one below and paste the code into the “web property ID”.
That’s all there is to it!, your site has now been linked to your Google analytics account which will now begin gathering data from this point forward.
Once you enter your analytics account, you will be taken to the Audience Overview section of the account. You can take a look at the Dashboard section which you will find in Dashboard -> Private -> My Dashboard. Here you will get a complete overview of your analytics account that the audience section will go into more detail.
Above is the general dashboard that you will see in every analytics account, it summarises everything in the audience area of the analytics account from the number of users that entered the site to the locations that they are coming from. This site has just recently been put live with analytics set up in the past week and is slowly beginning to show the user sessions. Now we’ll head to the audience section of analytics. There a plethora of data for you to have a look at and individual features that have a great way for you to make the most of an analytics account.
The dashboard of your google analytics account will show you a basic overview of the information of traffic on your site such as the number of sessions that took place(people visited the website).
Before you can use analytics effectively, you need to understand each matrix and how you can use the information to improve your campaign. Google Analytics will break down each matrix into 3 different categories – Acquisition, Behavior, Conversion. Acquisition
Sessions – Shows you the number of old and new sessions to your site.
% New Sessions – This is the first time users met
Average. Session Duration – This is the average of how long each session lasts
Bounce Rate – This is when a user clicks on a page on your site and never advances before leaving.
Pages / Sessions – This is the average amount of pages on your site that a user visits per single session.
Page Interview – These are aggregate pages viewed by all users on your site. Even returning to a previously viewed page will count as a new
Average. Session Duration – This will take the average time users have spent on your site from each of your sessions.
Target Conversion Rate – Shows you the percentage of total users divided by the number of conversions on your site.
Goal Completion – The total amount of conversions on your site
Target Value – The total value received from all your conversions.
This section displays the amount of users who are actually on your site at the beginning of the day. You have the option to display users who visited your site within the last day, 7 days, 14 days or 30 days.
This is a great way to narrow down areas that your traffic may have spiked or decreased. If you find that within the last two weeks for example that the number of users has dropped significantly from the weeks before then you may want to have a look at your site and see what may be causing the issue.
The user explorer tab will allow you to have a look at each individual user and find out how they acted and what actions they completed on your site. If your site has e-commerce functionality, you can also see how many times a user has purchased something from your store as well as the total amount spent.
Demographics and Interests
This section of analytics breaks down each of the different demographics entering your site. Age, gender and interests are a great way of understanding how all demographics are interacting with your site and if you are reaching your intended audience.
Overview – This shows you the overview of the age and gender demographics split into sessions, you can compare this with the multiple other metrics that google analytics tracks.
Age – This will show you all of the relative metrics for each of the age ranges. The age range starts at the age of 18-24 and it increases in blocks of 9 until the 65+ range.
Gender – Again the same as age it will show you the metrics between the two gender types male-female. In-Market Segments – This is the users that are considered closer to buying from your site.
It gives you some information about what users are using to visit your website. The Browser and OS section lists the total sessions and breaks them into several browser types such as Google Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer, etc. Here is a list of metrics that track this:
Browser – This is the browser that devices like Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer etc. use.
OS (Operating System) – The two main operating systems are Windows (Windows) and iOS (Mac).
Screen Resolution – Shows the screen resolution of the device used to view your site. This is a good way to understand how many users are using a
Screen Colors – The depth of color that the device uses is enabled.
Flash version – Flash player version used by the user.
Java Support – Displays users who have Java support in their browser and which do not.
Network – gives you a list of Internet service providers that people are using.
These metrics are a good way to show how important these factors are. If you find that your users are coming from a lot of different browsers, then you need to make sure that your site performs the way it should all of them. You may find that many people do not have Java support with their device, so you may want to avoid using any complex Java script on your site. When reading through this information consider all these factors and visit your site to suit the needs of your users.