Just been introduced to Google Analytics and don’t know a “bounce rate” from a jam scone? No worries!
In this article I outline the three most basic and perhaps most important Analytics stats for the newby to understand.
DISCLAIMER!: Before you start, please check out my post on setting up Google Analytics so it actually works, otherwise the data in your account may be drawn from false sources and therefore meaningless, which means you must not under any circumstances make meaningful business decisions based on this data.
Anyhow, here are three basic stats to get you started with Google Analytics.
The first screen upon opening your account is your “Audience overview” which will show some general statistics about what your visitors up to when they are on your site.
One of these key stats is the “bounce rate” which is technically defined as the amount of visitors who see only one page of your site then piss off, either by closing the site, pressing the back button in the browser or something else. Therefore the less people ‘bounce’, or the lower your bounce rate is the better.
The bounce rate is a key measure of how much your visitors are engaging with your site i.e. more pages visited = more engagement. In most instances it is a GOOD THING when your visitors view more than one page of your site, for example buying a product or submitting a contact form message.
How do you improve your bounce rate?
A high bounce rate may not necessarily be a terrible thing for all websites. For example, a local business site with a prominent phone number and address on the homepage may be all users need from the site, thus negating the need to interact with the site further.
Would you like to know how many of your visitors are viewing your site from their phones? Easy, go to the menu on the left side of your account and click Audience then scroll down to Mobile then click Overview and you should see this screen:
As you can see, the table shows three rows, with stats for desktop users, mobile users and tablet users (or Tabloozers as we call them). In the screenshot above, mobile users only make up 6.91% of the total traffic – not very much at all. You can also see the bounce rate is above 90% for mobile visitors – a terrible stat, but not a big worry as the mobile usage is low.
So you’ve done all this hard work creating service pages or blog posts but have no idea if anyone is looking at those pages? Stress no longer, simply go to the left side navigation menu, scroll down to Behaviour then click on Site Content then click All Pages to bring up the table of your 10 most viewed pages.
The first page shown in the table is a back slash “/” which signifies your homepage. The following rows show the URLs of your pages with the next most views.
This table shows what content on your site people are viewing, how long they’re spending on the pages, the bounce rate of the pages and other things.
OK! Now go have fun with your Google Analytics account!