Using Free Tools from Google:
The following guide is for Forge Online clients who receive the monthly Google Analytics Dashboard report for their website.
If you would like to access the Google Analytics data inside your own account, please let us know your Google account email address (we don’t need your login password). We can share our data with you.
Google Analytics is a tool for Conversion Rate Optimisation, Goals & Conversion Funnels
If you would like to learn about using Google Analytics, please log into your Google account and access this link: https://www.google.com/analytics/web/. Learning resources are available inside the Google Analytics console.
Google Search Console is a tool for Search Engine Optimisation & Organic Google Rank
If you are interested in Google data in relation to organic SEO you will need to visit the Google Search Console on this link: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/home. To learn about how to operate the Search Console, we recommend you use the extensive help resource there.
This includes all the visitors to your website, including yourself. It’s shown in the graph on a daily basis. Your aim is probably to get any many visitors to the website as possible, but it’s important to drive traffic of the right type – potential customers. Boosting your website traffic can be done in many different ways. You could run promotions through social media channels, gather clicks from paid advertising like Google Adwords, or optimise your website to increase traffic from organic search in Google or Bing. If you’d like some help generating more traffic to your website, ask your Forge Online consultant for advice on how you can achieve that.
If you would like us to place a filter to remove your visits from the data, let us know. Filters can only be added if you always view your website through a single static IP address, like when your office has a permanent connection to the internet that never changes its IP. You can test your IP by using this link: https://www.whatismyip.com/
While being able to generate business from repeat visits is very important, this kind of visitor is usually what you want more of. It opens your website to doing business with a wider audience and you should aim to get more new users every month. Capture their attention, and they may become loyal clients.
Most new visitors to your website come to the home page first, but if your website is well optimised for SEO, you could many new users going directly to other pages in your website, because each and every page in your site should serve a purpose, like answering a question, or providing useful information, and it might be more effective for your visitor to go there first and by-pass the home page altogether.
The bounce rate relates to how many of your visitors landed on your website but then did nothing else other than leave. It’s tricky to measure, but they might have read your page content and left 5 minutes later, but usually it refers to visitors that leave within 30 seconds. Whether a high bounce rate is good or bad depends on what your website is about. For most websites you should try to reduce your bounce rate.
Average Session Duration and Pages per Session:
This data tells you about how long people stayed on your website and how many pages they viewed while there. For most websites, you might aim to engage your visitor for as long as possible, but actually, if all you want is for a visitor to pick up the phone and call you, then their visit might even look like a bounce – because they landed on your website, found your number, then called you, never doing anything else on your website. Was that a successful visit? You be the judge.
Average Sessions Duration:
Gives you a figure in minutes and seconds format. This is how long visitors stayed on your website on average. It includes counting bounced visits so sometimes these can be surprisingly low. What counts is being able to get this to move in the direction you want. Many very effective websites actually cause apparent bounces, so consider this when setting a target.
This section relates to how many technical goals where completed during a visit to your website. Goals vary a lot from one website to another, and unless you have defined what your performance goals are, then this section may report zero goals completed. You may want to measure goals like:
1. You want visitors to stay on your website for at least 3 minutes
2. You want an enquiry form submitted
3. You want a visitor to buy something
If your website has eCommerce, this graph may report how much revenue your website has generated. eCommerce conversion tracking is not provided free of charge as it takes time to implement and test. If you would like to add eCommerce conversion tracking to your eCommerce website, please let us know and we can quote on any required work.
Sessions by Device Category:
This report will show what kind of device your visitors are using to view your website. It might give you some great insights into your market so you can understand where and how to use advertising, or makes decisions around website content layout to work best for a given screen size.
Traffic Source Overview:
This shows you where in the world your website visitors are coming from. If you’re a local business, overseas visits might not be of any value to you, but generally there’s no harm in overseas visitors viewing your website. Talk to us if you’d like to find a way to get more local traffic, or more international traffic. You can use SEO to gain traffic organically from all or specific regions, or you could use Adwords or any similar paid advertising channels to target a very specific location.
Sessions by Location:
This shows you a ‘heat map’ style display of where most of your traffic comes from.
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Does this sound like you?
Most business owners start a website project with a goal in mind, but end up with a website that can’t achieve what they were really after. At Forge, we’ve discovered that almost every business owner wants their website to get found in Google search, but changes to Google’s website content guidelines since 2013 have meant that many older websites are losing rank fast. We know how to create websites that work for organic search. Ask us for advice when planning your new site.