If you are just getting started with Google Analytics, and finding it difficult to understand where to begin, then here are some tips to get you started.
The three most important sections under the ‘Standard Reporting’ tab in Google Analytics help you understand who your audience is, where they came from, and what content they are consuming. Here is a quick overview of the basic questions that you can answer in each of the report sections.
- How many total visitors did you have for a given period?
- How many of these were new visitors?
- How many were returning visitors?
- How much time did they spend on the website?
- How many pages did they view?
- Which geographical location did they come from?
- Which language do they prefer?
- Which device, browser & OS did they use?
- How engaged are they with my social media sites?
- How many came to you via search engines?
- Which are the most popular search engines amongst my audience?
- Which keywords drove the most traffic?
- How many came from email campaigns?
- How many came other referral sources?
- Which social networks are the most popular with my audience?
- Which social posts resulted in site traffic increases?
- How many total pageviews were there for a given period?
- What was the average time spent on each page?
- Which were the most popular sections and pages?
- Which pages were the landing pages or entrance pages?
- Which pages resulted in the most bounces?
- Which pages resulted in the most exits?
- How did the visitors flow or navigate through your site?
Generate reports to answer the above questions, and then try to correlate the data to understand the ‘why’ questions.
Watch this space for more on how to answer the ‘Why’ questions!
Glossary of terms – http://support.google.com/googleanalytics/bin/topic.py?hl=en&topic=11285
Related blog post – http://blog.a2zinc.net/2012/03/16/real-time-data-with-google-analytics/