Having an effective website isn’t just about building a professional-looking site and increasing traffic. It’s important to increase the quality of traffic to your site as well – that is, you need to be sure that the people who come to your site are people who are actually in the market to buy your product or service. You then need to make sure that they are able to find what they’re looking for quickly and stay on those pages for a while.
Google Analytics can help you do this. By setting up an account and installing your tracking code on each page of the website (or having your internet marketing agency, medical web design, or legal web design firm do it for you), you’ll be able to monitor traffic to your site and improve the pages that need the most attention.
The Dashboard: An Overview
When you first log in, you’ll be faced with a series of graphs and charts on the main page (called the Dashboard). The top line graph shows the number of visits to your site every day for the past thirty days; use the calendar in the upper right to change those dates. Below you’ll see total visits for the selected time period, average pages per visit, average time spent on the site, and the bounce rate. The bounce rate reflects the percentage of visitors who leave the website after viewing only one page.
Analyzing Your Pages
Further down you’ll see the Content Overview, which shows the five pages on the site with the most pageviews. Clicking on view report and then Entrance Sources on the right sidebar will allow you to see exactly which websites are bringing in the most traffic to each individual page on the site. As people click on links on other websites leading back to yours, Google Analytics records this information. Clicking on Entrance Keywords will allow you to see which keywords were searched in a search engine to find each page on the site. By typing question words such as “what” and “how” into the Filter Keyword bar at the bottom, you can see which questions people are typing into search engines to find your site. This data helps you see where traffic is coming from and which keywords are drawing people in.
Using Google Analytics can help you generate leads and tailor your site to provide exactly what actual potential clients are searching for. There are dozens of other features on the Analytics menu to help you take control of your website traffic, but understanding
a) which pages are most frequently visited
b) which keywords are bringing people to each page
c) each page’s bounce rate
will help you be better-equipped to plan effective content for all of your important pages. Google Analytics is an invaluable internet marketing tool which no SEO campaign should be without.