Google Analytics is a free and powerful tool. Remember though that it’s a tool that needs to be set up for you and your business. Many people just open a GA account, add the code to their website and think that’s it. Job done. Sadly that’s not the case.
Google Analytics should be tailored to your business.
Here’s our quick checklist on what you should be doing to your GA account to get it ready for your business.
In Google Analytics you have views. A view is a reporting level in an Analytics account where you can access reports and analysis tools. When creating a view in GA will make an unfiltered view. Here it is recommended that you create three views. A reporting view, for your everyday reporting. A test view, which is used for testing any new implementations in GA. Doing this in your test view will mean that your core reporting view data can’t be disrupted if you make a mistake when testing something new. Lastly it’s recommended to create an unfiltered view. A view like this is used for backup in case you need it.
Filters can be used for a number of reasons. One great feature of using filters is to filter out your office and staff’s IP address and actions on the website from being recorded in GA. Why this is important is that in most cases you just want to record your customers using the website. If you have a large customer service team that use the website all the time you don’t want this data to mix with customer data. It will start to create conflicts in your data. It will also not give you a true view of your customers interactions on site.
What goals would you like to set on the website. Would you like to know how many people signed up for your newsletter, click on the contact form? This is where defining your goals internally is imperative. Then creating Goals in GA to capture this data. You will then be able to further analyse the success of your marketing activities and see what’s exactly driving goals and success on your website.
If you’re an ecommerce website or want to set values against goals then you should ensure that you have set your currency correctly. It’s surprising how many don’t do this.
This has been the bane of many marketers lives. Over the past several years spam data has infiltrated its way into GA accounts. If you have seen some in your account, don’t panic. It’s not affecting your website. Just your data, although it shouldn’t be living there. There are methods to remove this data and ensure that not affecting your overall data. Years of spam data can really start to skew your reporting.
This is related to spam data as discussed above. In View Settings you can navigate to Bot Filtering and make sure the box is checked. This (currently) will not remove or stop all bot and spam data but it is recommended to ensure this box is checked. Google has discussed how they are working on spam getting into your data and how to reduce and stop this in the future.
A simple check box that could open up a wealth of information. Most (not all) sites have the functionality to search on a website. What are people searching for in this search box on your website? By activating this in View Settings and adding the correct Query parameter to ensure the data is collected can lead you to new opportunities.
For example, say you sell a range of plain t-shirts. You jump into your site search data and see an influx of people searching for black t-shirts in the site search box. This could indicate that you do not have black t-shirts easily navigable on site. Secondary to this could be that you do not sell black t-shirts at all. This could now become a new product you launch due to the clear demand.
This may seem obvious to have this set up but we have seen time and time again businesses not setting up ecommerce tracking in GA. By setting up ecommerce tracking you will begin to see what your sales are going through your website. But also what marketing helped lead to that sale.
This is a short list of elements to get the correct data on the right track in your Google Analytics account. The data you use in Google Analytics is most likely being used to make business, marketing and budgetary decisions. If your data isn’t correct then you could be making incorrect costly mistakes… Don’t leave it too late to get your data in order.
If you have any Google Analytics challenges and questions then make sure you get in touch with us today. We offer a Google Analytics services that will help transform your data into something actionable. We also offer bespoke training for individuals and teams.