Google Analytics (GA) has done more than any other platform to bring the practice of data analytics to the center of organizations. By offering a free-to-use, intuitive solution to businesses of any size, it has offered the promise of full transparency into customer behavior. Moreover, as part of the broader marketing analytics movement, it has helped shape the language we use daily. Our handy guide explains some of the most frequently heard, but at time confusing, terms GA has brought into everyday parlance in the marketing world. Pitch decks and strategy sessions abound with references to “data-driven decisions” nowadays, which is a healthy trend for businesses overall. Beyond the buzzword status this phrase has attained, it is true that businesses that integrate analytics into the decision-making process simply get better results. Google reports that business leaders are more than twice as likely to act on insights taken from analytics: As Google continues to … [Read more...] about Google Analytics: Misunderstandings that hold marketers back
Google Analytics has announced new social reports today, designed to help marketers measure the return on investment for social media activities. “Many social measurement tools focus on social listening by monitoring keywords and buzz. While they’re helpful in many cases, these tools don’t connect the dots to show how investments in different social channels ultimately lead to sales or business objectives,” said Phil Mui, Google Analytics group product manager, explaining how the new tool is designed to go beyond listening. “Our goal with the new reports is to tie social activities and referrals to measurable, meaningful economic value so businesses can more effectively evaluate which social channels are impacting their bottom line, and which tactics will lead to measurable economic value,” Mui said. The New Social Reports The new set of reports will be available under the “Social” tab in Google Analytics. Some may see … [Read more...] about Google Analytics Launches New Social Reports To Measure Social ROI
Google Analytics is a hugely useful and in-depth tool for measuring and monitoring your website’s performance, as long as you can learn its language. After setting up Google Analytics on your site for the first time, it can be hard work to navigate your way through all the different terms referring to parts of your site or the activities users carry out on it – especially when so many of them sound similar. What’s the difference between a ‘session’ and a ‘pageview’? Are ‘users’ and ‘visitors’ the same thing? How does your site’s ‘bounce rate’ differ from its ‘exit rate’? Does ‘time on page’ really reflect what it says it does? If you’ve wondered something like this at any point while staring down a mass of analytics for your site, worry not. We’ve put together a handy guide to break down the meanings and uses of some key but confusing terms on Google Analytics, and … [Read more...] about Google Analytics: a guide to confusing terms
Following my last post on behavioral targeting, which was an overview of the field, I will provide a more hands-on approach in this post. To briefly recap, behavioral targeting involves creating multiple “personas” that represent multiple users of your site, and using analytics to create a unique experience for each persona group based on observed and predicted behavior. The first step to a successful behavioral targeting process is finding the right targets. It is not always obvious which users should be “bucketed” together. Creating effective buckets requires knowledge about the site and a careful analysis of the data. It is important to have clear objectives; this way we can pinpoint the type of person we are targeting, measure our success and optimize for maximum effect. This can be done using any web analytics tool that provides advanced segmentation. But you also need to think hard about the marketing implications of segmentation and persona creation. I … [Read more...] about Behavioral Targeting & Google Analytics: How To Create Personas
Previously, I covered the basic steps involved in setting up a Google Analytics account. In this column, I’ll focus on four GA reports to help you better manage your PPC campaigns. If you are like most search marketers, you’ve often wished for more insight into your campaigns than what AdWords alone can provide. You may also be looking for a “one-stop” place to analyze all of your PPC data from all engines and campaigns. Recent upgrades and enhancements to Google Analytics make both possible. Google Analytics offers tons of fancy charts and graphs that can be intimidating to even the most seasoned search marketers. To turn that stream of data into useful and actionable information, you must create reports that give you the information you need when you need it. This month, I will discuss how to create and use four fundamental GA reports to help you manage your campaigns. These are: Goals > Funnel Visualization Custom Reporting Traffic Sources > Search … [Read more...] about How To Use Google Analytics To Maximize B2B ROI: Part II
A day after warning publishers against advertorials, will Google’s search team now have to penalize parts of its own company for running advertorials? Perhaps, and if so, it wouldn’t be the first time. It’s also another absurd chapter in Google’s war on paid links. Google Says: Advertorials, Beware! After news came out yesterday that Google had apparently penalized Interflora for running advertorials — and also reduced the PageRank values of many UK newspapers that carried these — Google finally blogged a general warning against such practices. From its post: Please be wary if someone approaches you and wants to pay you for links or “advertorial” pages on your site that pass PageRank. Selling links (or entire advertorial pages with embedded links) that pass PageRank violates our quality guidelines, and Google does take action on such violations But as Aaron Wall at SEO Book covers today, examples of Google running advertorials could put … [Read more...] about Will Google Penalize Chromebooks, Google Analytics, AdWords & Google+ For Using Advertorials?
If you are a marketer, you know just how important it is to keep track of your analytics, and there are plenty of resources to make sure you are your own analytics expert. These analytics help show you what content does best with your audience and helps you understand who your audience is and what they want to see. If you are savvy when it comes to analytics but prefer to use a plugin to implement and verify the Google Analytics tracking, this article is definitely for you. Basic Google Analytics implementation is quite simple to use, however the more advanced side of Google Analytics Tracking, for example Enhanced E-commerce, Content Grouping, Custom Dimensions, and many more are complex and they require more of a technical understanding of the code. Luckily, there are some really helpful plugins out there that were made to help you track all of these important analytics in a super simple way. I have created a list of 18 plugins that were created to make your Google Analytic … [Read more...] about 18 Plugins to Speed up Your Google Analytics Implementation
The holidays are all about tradition and bringing cheer to your family, friends, and clients. For me, that applies to the Google Analytics metrics I have come to know and love when sending my clients their monthly reports. For most of us, the holidays are the all-too-short-lived time where families gather ’round a tree, get and give gifts we may or may not use, and eat a harvest of homemade food. For others, the more data-driven geeks like myself, that slew of holiday treats takes second place to the festive findings of my Google Analytics dashboards. Whatever you’re looking forward to this holiday season, I’ve got some easy Google Analytics reports for my SEO marketing friends that will make your extra two-and-half days off a little more om. Ahead, find 6 Google Analytics reports that brought me lots of cheer for this year during this cornucopias gourd filled fall season. Hint: You may want to add these to your wishlist! Before I dive into the details of Google … [Read more...] about 6 Google Analytics Reports That Will Bring Every SEO Lots of Cheer!
There have been multiple blog posts written over the years on how to use Google Analytics to identify and fix 404 Error Pages. I have even written one myself and it’s a common slide in many of my talks. But with the newest features that are available within Google Analytics, these blog posts are due an update. Custom Variables vs Events The first question is whether to capture details of the 404 Error Page within page level customisations or as an event. My approach is to capture more information about the page using page level customisation. Since viewing a 404 Error Page is not an event, it should not be treated as one. Google Analytics tracking Step one in the GA tracking for Error Pages is to rename the page name to /error-page/404-error. This means all views of this page are grouped together, making them easier to identify and analysis becomes significantly easier. There are two key pieces of information to capture on each 404 Error Page. The first is the URL of the page … [Read more...] about Fixing 404 Error Pages with Google Analytics