Do you want to know how visitors find and see your website? The easy way to figure it out is by using Google Analytics on your site. In this complete beginner’s guide to Google Analytics, we’ll explain everything you need to know about Google Analytics, why it’s important for your website, and how to get started using it.
Understanding Google Analytics for Beginners
What is Google Analytics? Google Analytics is a free tracking tool that gives you detailed data on your website visitors and their actions on your site. It’s the most comprehensive analytics tool in the market.
With Google Analytics, you can easily make data-driven marketing decisions to grow your traffic and boost sales and revenue.
Below are a few benefits of using Google Analytics.
- It’s free: It’s a freemium service and offers solutions for websites of all sizes.
- It provides easy to understand reports: It gives you a better understanding of what works and what doesn’t on your site. Even if you’re not an analytics expert, you can easily interpret the data to improve customer experience on your site and boost revenue.
- It’s comprehensive: It gives you everything you need to know about your visitors whether you’re a publisher, small business, eCommerce site owner, etc.
Why Use Google Analytics?
While it’s certainly a nice feeling to know you’re getting traffic to your website, that isn’t the only reason to use Google Analytics.
In fact, Google Analytics give you a lot more information than just the number of your visitors.
You can also learn about:
- Location: You can identify the geographical location of your site visitors.
- Traffic source: You can identify what websites send traffic to your site.
- Content: You can find the most popular blog posts and pages of your site.
- eCommerce: You can identify the shopping behavior of your customers and get a report on sales and revenue.
- And much more…
When you understand your site visitors, the content they like, and how they find your website, you can tailor your strategy to grow your traffic even more.
For example, after looking at your Google Analytics data, you might find that there’s a certain day and time when you get the most visitors on your blog. By publishing a new post at that time, you can reach more visitors with your content.
Or, you might discover that despite spending hours each week updating your Facebook page, it doesn’t really send you much traffic at all. Then you can decide to invest your time in a social media platform that sends you more traffic, saving yourself some time and attracting more visitors.
By basing your website strategy on insights you learn from Google Analytics, you can more effectively grow your traffic and save time in the process.
Ready to get started? Let’s take a look at how to set up Google Analytics on your WordPress site.
How to Install Google Analytics on Your Site
To set up Google Analytics on your site manually, you’ll need to copy the tracking code from your analytics account and add it to every page of your site.
But if you’re after an easy solution to set up Google Analytics, all you need to do is to install and activate the MonsterInsights plugin.
MonsterInsights is the best Google Analytics WordPress plugin that makes analytics setup easy and also allows you to take the full advantage of various powerful Google Analytics features.
The best thing is it lets you connect your WordPress site with Google Analytics in just a few clicks, without even having to touch the tracking code.
For a step by step guide, you can read how to connect your WordPress site with Google Analytics.
Using Google Analytics Reports
Upon installing Google Analytics on your site, it can take a few hours to start collecting your website data.
Once it starts collecting your website data, you can go to Insights » Reports in your WordPress dashboard to see how your website is doing. MonsterInsights gives you a quick overview of your traffic stats, so you don’t always have to log into your Google Analytics account to get an overview.
However, if you need more detailed traffic stats, you can log into your Google Analytics account.
Let’s take a look at a few important traffic reports you can find in Google Analytics.
1. Google Analytics Home
The homepage of your Google Analytics profile gives you a quick overview of your traffic stats for a preselected timeframe. You can easily change the date range if you want.
Here are a few stats you can find in the homepage of your Google Analytics account:
- Audience overview: The number of people who visited your website during the selected date range.
- Real-time report: It tells you how many visitors are on your site right at the moment.
- How do you acquire users? You can see what websites your visitors are coming from.
- How well do you retain users? It gives you an overview of returning visitors of your site.
- And a lot more…
2. Audience Overview
The audience overview report is another important metric you find in your Google Analytics profile. It gives you an overview of the number of people who have visited your website. To find the report, you can navigate to Audience » Overview.
A few important metrics you’ll find in the Audience Overview report are:
- Sessions: A session is defined as a group of interactions a visitor takes within a given time frame on your website. In simple terms, whatever a user does in a single visit, like browse multiple pages, purchase products, download resources, etc. is counted as a single session.
- Users: The number of visitors who arrived at your site during a selected date range.
- Pageviews: The total number of pages viewed.
- Bounce rate: The percentage of visitors who leave your site after just viewing one page. You can read more about bounce rate in Google Analytics.