Google Analytics for Small Businesses
Using Google Analytics is a smart move for small business owners. Unfortunately, the data and metrics this platform provides can feel overwhelming.
Yes, Google Analytics provides an astounding amount of information, but once you’re capable of navigating the platform, it’s very easy to extract helpful insights that will help you grow your small business and better serve your customers.
PointA uses analytics to help our clients meet their digital marketing goals. Learn five metrics or tools you should know in Google Analytics to help you structure the most effective digital marketing plan!
The acquisition report in Google Analytics tells you how people are coming to your website and interacting with it. Google breaks out each traffic source into a “Channel.” Whether they landed on your website from a social link, from the organic SERP (search engine results page), or they came from the local pack in your Google My Business (GMB) listing; you can find all of this and more in this section of Google Analytics. Don’t feel overwhelmed by the percentages and numbers. We’ve broken out a few important metrics for small business below:
1) Organic Website Sessions
One you’re in the Acquisition section, click on All Traffic > Channels in the Analytics dashboard. Our focus in this section is organic sessions. A website session is when one visitor spends more than 30 minutes on your website. This is our preferred metric since it tells a much bigger picture than a page visit or a new user.
Once you’re on there, you can drill into each different channel to view the number of sessions on each. Perhaps you notice a high bounce rate from the social channels, which could indicate thin content or a poor mobile user experience. Analyzing sessions from each channel in this section of Analytics will give you a great idea on which channel performs well for your business and where to focus your marketing efforts. It can be helpful to look at year-over-year data to see how your business is growing (or not).
2) Landing Page Traffic
Once you’ve figured out how to analyze page sessions from each different channel, you can dig deeper to extract more insights. One valuable dimension is “Landing Page” or the page the visitors land on. Breaking out traffic by landing page allows you to identify well and poor performing pages. This information can guide your optimization strategy and provide unique insights on your existing audience. We recommend you view landing page traffic in the organic search channel.
3) Google My Business Traffic
Your Google My Business profile is an important factor in the local search landscape. Did you know you can see how people are interacting with your website when they click on the “Website” button in your GMB listing? This can tell you why people are visiting your website, what they’re looking for, and help you identify any content gaps that you need to address. To find this organic traffic data, you’ll need to change to “Source” as your primary dimension in the Acquisition dashboard of Google Analytics.
It’s important to remember that Analytics will only segment this traffic if you tag your website URL with UTM parameters. To do so, make a UTM tag in with Google’s Campaign Builder, and replace your old GMB website URL with this new URL.
It should look something like this: www.oneupweb.com?utm_source=gmb&utm_medium=organic&utm_campaign=local
4) Google Search Console Queries
Google Analytics conveniently pulls data from Google Search Console, putting it all in one convenient place. This feature has not replaced Google Search Console, and we encourage you to monitor that space for indexing errors and more. One of our favorite features in Google Search Console is the Queries dashboard, which shows you what queries people use to have your results show up in the SERP. This is a great place to formulate a keyword strategy and identify which terms you’re ranking for and any keyword gaps in your content strategy.
Any small business owner knows they need to be familiar with their audience. The Audience section in Google Analytics makes this easier than ever. Although privacy protection is making some of this data increasingly vague, it’s still very valuable. Dig into each section in the Audience dashboard to get know your website visitors.
You can also use this section to see what device your audience is using and extract information to understand how well your website is optimized to perform on different browsers and devices and technology. It’s also helpful to add a secondary dimension to see how certain landing pages perform on different devices with a certain audience and more!
Help When You Need It
Running a small business is hard, and so is maintaining your business’s digital presence. That’s where we come in. PointA helps small business like yours maintain an authoritative and up to date online presence while using the data that matters to make informed marketing and content decisions.
Whether you need help setting up and optimizing your Google My Business profile, or you need a data-driven paid marketing strategy, we can help.
As the small business division of Oneupweb, we’ve taken our most effective strategies and techniques for big companies and packaged them for small business owners who need results. Give us a call at (231) 882-1100 or contact us online, we’d love to hear from you.
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