Translated by Sinéad O'Sullivan
We often hear about metrics, data, reports, about websites and apps.
In fact, it is very important to understand what you are doing and how you are doing it. Thanks to monitoring tools, you know what works and what can be fixed or improved. In this regard, the most used is Google Analytics, so what is it?
Google Analytics: what is it?
It is a platform through which you can analyze a large amount of data regarding your site or your app. It has many features, some easier and some more complex, which give a 360° overview of the online performance of your work. It is estimated that it is used by 30-50 million sites worldwide, making it the number one monitoring platform.
Thanks to all this data, it is possible to understand how people arrive on your website or app, how many times they visit it, which page is the most visited and which one has the worst results. By learning to understand this data you can further improve your performance, becoming more specific for the target you are obtaining, also thanks to this, achieve even better results.
How Google Analytics works
First, Google Analytics is free. You just need to create a Google account and access Google Analytics from there. From there, it's easy to continue. You must fill out a lot of data to be able to enter your website or app, but Google makes the process clear and simple.
Once this is done, Google will provide a Tracking ID, which is a small row of digits and letters. This small string must be inserted in the pages of the site or app that you want to monitor. It seems complex, but it's not: Google Analytics will clearly indicate how to do so.
Google Analytics: what it is in detail
Once you access your Google Analytics account, you have a home page that collects what it considers to be the most important data about the site or app you are monitoring. The first three are:
- The traffic on the site and the number of conversions that have been obtained, both organically and paid
- The volume of users each day, hour by hour
- The number of users who are on the site, in real time, and on which pages they are
The home page collects other data that it considers relevant. In this regard, it is good to make a distinction between two characteristics of the data:
- Dimensions: These are the "attributes" of the data, such as "source". They cannot be measured quantitatively; they are only descriptive.
- Metrics: These are numbers that quantitatively describe data, such as the average time users spend on the app or site you are monitoring.
Under the home page there is a section dedicated to personalizing the account, which can be modified by adding certain data and sections that you always want to have at hand. When you open your Google Analytics account, this section is empty.
Google Analytics collects, in addition to the home page and the personalization section, five other sections. These five sections are located under the report macro section. Each section also has a number of sub-sections that explain in detail the data shown in the general overview of the section you are viewing.
1. In real time
This is a section that collects real-time data on what is happening on the site or app. You can check them by the minute or hourly. It is a useful section for those who want to check the immediate impact of a post, a campaign or to check any changes applied to the site. You can also see where users are connected from.
Show all user data. There are several characteristics that may be relevant in the analysis that is being carried out. For example, you can see demographics and geographic data. Furthermore, users' interests can be monitored or what technology they have used to access the site or app.
In this section, you can also monitor a lot of data about the site. For example, we talk about the bounce rate. That is, the frequency with which users enter the site and leave immediately after, perhaps because they have selected the link by mistake. The other data that is monitored is the average duration of the sessions of all users.
This section is all about showing where customers come from. So, for example, it can be understood whether the site appeared organically or via sponsorship if they searched for it on Google. Or again, if they arrived from social channels, if they typed the address directly into the search bar, and so on.
In this section, Google Analytics shows the behaviors that users have on the site or on the app, i.e., what they do. Which page they visit the most, which one they visit the least, how long they stay on a certain section and much more. In practice, it shows how users interact with content.
This is the section dedicated to the conversions obtained. A conversion is obtained when a user performs an action on the site or app that leads to a result. Conversions can be macro when it's a complete purchase transaction, such as in the case of an e-commerce. They can be micro, however, when other kinds of actions are performed. There is talk, for example, of getting a membership, or other actions that could lead to a macro conversion.
Google Analytics provides a ton of data, but sometimes it's really hard to navigate this mountain of analytics. For this reason, one of the services offered by us at Ekeria is the management of Google Analytics. We take care of every aspect, from creating the account for your site to the final analysis of the data obtained.