Wondering what Google Analytics is? Do you know how to use it on your site? This guide will help you.
Google Analytics is a free online tool that allows you to track and analyze your website traffic. Also, it shows how visitors behave or interact on your site. But many beginners find it complex to use, and they don’t use it.
Then again, Google Analytics is the most used digital analytics service, among many alternative analytics tools. But Why?
To answer these questions, we’ve compiled this article to show how Google Analytics works. Moreover, this post will show you how using Google Analytics will help to improve your website.
Let’s get started.
A. What is Google Analytics? And What it Does?
Google Analytics (in short GA) is a free online web analytics tool provided by Google. It’s a tracking tool that collects website or app data and generates useful reports about your website users and how they interact with your site.
With Google Analytics, you can learn:
- how many users are viewing your site,
- number of views a page or content has received,
- who your website users are (age, gender, device of users),
- where they’re from (language, location),
- how they found your site (via a direct link, social media, search engine, or ads),
- which pages on your site they’re most engaged with,
- how they’re using your site (scrolling, clicking),
- and more.
All these metrics help you to know your customers or visitors better and how your site is actually performing. Then, with the help of these, you can make informed decisions about your business. And, strategies based on actual data will surely provide you better results than those made by guessing.
In a nutshell, Google Analytics is an essential growth tool every website needs to grow. It gives you insights that are necessary to understand your customers or visitors better and to make better growth strategies.
Now, let’s check out an example of how to use Google Analytics!
For example – let’s say you have an online shop. Now you want to know how visitors use your site. So, this is where Google Analytics comes in handy.
Google Analytics gives the exact number of visitors to your store, total pageviews, conversion rate, revenue, etc. Also, you can learn about where the users come from, the device used by them, etc.
These are just some common types of reports you’ll get from Google Analytics. We’ll explain other types of metrics in the following sections below.
B. Importance of Google Analytics (Top 7 Reasons Why Use it)
In this competitive market, creating a website is just the first step. Next, you should start various growth and marketing strategies to grow your site.
Among many growth strategies, Google Analytics plays a vital role in helping with your business growth. It enables you to monitor your website traffic in real-time and evaluates how your site is performing.
Based on the results, you can improve your website for better user experience and conversion. Consequently, this leads to a successful and profitable website and enables you to stay ahead of the competition.
Here we’re listing a few points about the importance of Google of Analytics and how it helps your business’s growth.
1. Comprehensive tool to check your site’s traffic
Google Analytics is a powerful tool that lets you measure and analyze the traffic coming to your website. It reports the total number of visitors on your site, including new or returning users, and their each and every interaction with the website.
Besides that, you’ll understand the audience demographics report, device used, their interest in your website content, and many more.
2. Easy way to review your strategies
Analytics provides detailed statistics and data about your website. It shows visitors’ engagement on your website content to compare the best and low-performing content. Also, you can check whether your SEO efforts are working or not.
This information really helps to know what your website audience is expecting from your site. Hence, you can improve your website content and products and target more audience.
3. Make data-driven decisions for your business
Data-driven decisions mean working towards business goals by verifying and analyzing the business information. Google Analytics provides the tools that collect, extract, format the data, which gives a deeper understanding of customer experience.
Thus with this information, you can make a smarter decision for your business goals.
4. Easy Integration Google’s Marketing
Google Analytics provides valuable information about your website and links your GA account with various other Google marketing tools. These tools include Google Search Console, PageSpeed Insights, Google AdSense, etc.
Similarly, marketing tools are essential to track the performance of your marketing activities in Google Analytics.
5. Helps to Improve Your Site’s SEO
Google Analytics collects reports regarding your website performance. This report helps to identify your website’s slow pages, search keywords, organic search your website is getting, and more.
Hence, looking at these reports, you can work on it and deliver the best to your audience, which automatically improves your site SEO.
6. Enjoy a Powerful tool for Free
The best part is that Google Analytics is available completely free of cost. You just need a Google account to use Analytics for your website.
C. How Does Google Analytics Work?
As we know, Google Analytics collects data of visitors and generates a report. But how does it work? In short, it gathers user information, processes them, and then generates a report that is easy to read.
Let’s explain the 3 steps in detail.
- Data Collection
- Data Processing
Now, let’s see the 3 steps in more details.
1) Data Collection
To track your website, you need to create a Google Analytics account and add your website details to it.
Once the tracking code is set up on your site, Google Analytics will drop a cookie in the user’s browser. Using the cookie, it’ll start collecting information about your users and their activity on your site.
When users start interacting on your site, the tracking code generates a ‘hit,’ sending it to Google Analytics. The hit collects all the information regarding the interaction of users at the exact time and moment.
Also, Google Analytics groups the user activity into a period of time called ‘Session.’ The session starts when the user enters your site and visits the first page. If a user is inactive on the website for 30 minutes, the session ends, and a new session gets started.
2) Data Processing
After data is collected on the GA server, it processes the data and formats to generate reports. It processes the hit requests, applies filters, etc.
When processing data, Analytics organizes data on different categories like whether the user device is mobile or browser and other factors. After that, it transforms data into dimensions, metrics, and stores it in the database.
After the data is processed, it’ll be ready to display in the analytics dashboard. This report gives a record of how a user behaves with your website.
You can access your Google Analytics data by going to https://analytics.google.com/analytics/. But make sure that you’ve logged into your Google Account that you used for creating your GA account.
D. How to Set Up Google Analytics? (Step-by-Step)
Google Analytics is a free site analytics tool offered by Google. Hence, it only requires a Google account for setup and use. Like other free services by Google, you can use this tool free by simply signing up with your account.
Once you create your Google Analytics account, you must add your website to your Analytics account. After it’s added, you’ll get a tracking code which you should add to your site to allow Google Analytics to start tracking your site.
Hence, the Google Analytics setup process mainly has 2 steps as follows:
- Create a Google Analytics Account and Add Your Site
- Find Tracking Code and Add it to Your Site.
We’ll explain these steps in detail below. Keep on reading.
Step 1. Set up a GA Account, Add Your Website Property
1. Go to the Google Analytics homepage by clicking this link. Next, click on ‘Set up for free.’ Now, sign in through your Google Account.
You don’t need to create a new Google Account for Google Analytics if you already have one. Otherwise, create a one and plan to keep it forever because, with this, you can have access to GA.
2. Once you log in, click on ‘Start Measuring.’
3. Now, you need to add an Account Name. Also, make sure you’re using an appropriate account name that matches your Website or company. Click Next from the bottom of the page.
4. Choose whether you want to measure a Website or App. Here we choose the website.
5. After that, set up your website property. Without delay, add some details about your site like:
- Enter website name (www.sitesaga.com)
- Website URL (https://www.sitesaga.com/)
- Industry Category – Select the option that represents your Website.
- Set your local time zone.
On the next screen, you should accept ‘Data Processing Terms’ as required by GDPR and ‘Google Measurement Controller – Controller Data Protection Terms’.
Click on ‘I Accept.’ So, this is the final step in setting up Google Analytics Account
7. At last, you’ll get a tracking code which you should add to your site.
Step 2. Install Google Analytics Tracking Code on Your Website
After setting up an Analytics account, you’ll get Google Analytics code. Navigate to the GA dashboard, and at the bottom, you’ll see the Admin section. Click on it, and you’ll see a new screen with various options.
Select Tracking Info and then Tracking Code. There you’ll see a box with code.
Now, you should add this code to the header <HEAD> of your website. You can do it in different ways, depending on your website platform. Here, we’ll show some methods.
- Installing Google Analytics in WordPress Website
- Connecting Google Analytics in Blogger
- Adding Google Analytics to Wix
- Adding Google Analytics Tracking Code to Shopify
- Installing Google Analytics to Squarespace Website
- Adding Google Analytics to a Static HTML Website
Let’s begin with a brief tutorial on how to add Google Analytics to WordPress.
i) Installing Google Analytics in WordPress Website
Installing Google Analytics on a WordPress website is extremely easy. Google provides a plugin called Site Kit to easily connect Google Analytics with WordPress.
This plugin connects not just Google Analytics, but also other 5 useful marketing tools by Google. They are: Google Search Console, AdSense, PageSpeed Insights, Optimize, and Tag Manager.
Install Site Kit WordPress Plugin
To get started, log in to your WordPress website dashboard. Next, go to ‘Plugins> Add New‘ from the menu, search the plugin, and install it.
For more details, please check our full guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.
Set Up Site Kit Plugin
After you activate the plugin, it’ll show ‘Congratulations, Site Kit is activated’ message with the Start Setup button. Simply click on it to start the setup.
After that, you’ll be redirected to a new screen. There you can see 3 setup steps; Verify site ownership, Allow Site to Access Google Account Data, Set Up Search Console. After that, there’s a ‘Sign in with Google‘ option.
Click on that button. Next, you should allow all the permissions.
After that, you’ll be redirected to the setup page again.
Now, you just need to click on the ‘Proceed‘ button to verify site ownership. If your email is an administrator user on the WordPress site, then it’ll verify in seconds.
Next, you should also allow your site to access your Google account data. And, finally click ‘Add Site‘ to Search Console.
That’s all! On the next screen, you’ll see the ‘Congratulations, Site Kit setup is done’ message. Click on the ‘Go to my dashboard‘ button.
Now, you’ll be back to your WordPress dashboard.
Set Up Google Analytics with WordPress
Go to ‘Site Kit>Settings‘ from your dashboard menu and click on the ‘Connect More Services‘ tab. Next, click on the ‘Set up Analytics‘ link.
Next, you’ll see ‘Sign in With Google’ page. Click on your Google account to continue.
Next, you should allow Site Kit to see and download Google Analytics data. Click on the ‘Allow‘ link.
On the next screen, you’ll need to confirm your choices again. That’s all! Next, you’ll be redirected to your dashboard where you’ll see ‘Congrats on completing the setup for Analytics!’ message.
That’s it! You’ve installed Google Analytics in WordPress without actually using it. Pretty simple, right?
The Site Kit plugin automatically adds the tracking code to your website after you allow permissions to access your account data. Also, it lets you view your website reports right inside your dashboard as explained in the next section.
Alternatively, you can use MonsterInsights plugin which is yet another popular Google Analytics plugin for WordPress.
View Dashboard and Reports
Now, you can start viewing your Google Analytics reports right in your WordPress dashboard.
Go to the ‘Site Kit> Analytics‘ page from your dashboard to view the reports. But it may take a few hours, probably 24 hrs for Google to collect data and prepare reports.
ii) Connecting Google Analytics in Blogger
Blogger is a popular blogging platform by Google. Since it’s also a Google product as Google Analytics, you can find Analytics integration option by default in Blogger.
Adding Google Analytics on Blogger gives you useful information about who is visiting your Blogger blog, how they’re finding it, and many more. Follow the steps below to get Google Analytics working with Blogger.
Sign in to your Blogger account and visit your dashboard. Go to the Settings option from the left menu. On the Settings page, you’ll see the ‘Google Analytics Property ID’ option.
Click on it, then you’ll see a popup box where you’ll paste the tracking ID. So, you need the tracking code now.
So, first, go to your Google Analytics account (https://analytics.google.com/analytics/). Then, click on the ‘Admin’ option at the bottom left corner. On the Admin page, navigate to the ‘Tracking Code’ option below the ‘Property’ column.
On the next screen, you’ll find the tracking info. You can find tracking ID right at the top of the page. Also, you can see it in the tracking code as well. It’ll look like this: UA:XXXXXXXXX.
Now copy this tracking code. Then, go to your Blogger settings page and paste in the Google Analytics Tracking ID popup box.
After that, click the ‘Save’ option. It’ll take a few days to show your blog information on Google Analytics.
iii) Adding Google Analytics to Wix
Wix is yet another popular website builder. You can use Google Analytics with Wix as well but you should be a premium plan user to use this feature.
When you visit the Wix dashboard, navigate to Settings > Tracking Tools. You’ll see a page where you can add different tools like Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager, Facebook Pixel from New Tool options located at the top of the page. Choose Google Analytics for now.
After you add GA from the left sidebar, select the Edit options. It’ll give you space to add the tracking ID obtained from Google Analytics and Click Apply.
You have successfully added Google Analytics to your Wix site. After a few days, you can see the traffic of your site.
iv) Adding Google Analytics Tracking Code to Shopify
Shopify is a widely used eCommerce platform. Adding Google Analytics on Shopify will help you find out how customers are using your store. This helps grow your store and know about your customer what they are expecting from your store.
Once you copy the Tracking ID from Google Analytics, go to your Shopify Dashboard. Navigate to Online Store from the bottom of the Dashboard and choose Preferences options.
Now you’ll see a Google Analytics account section. Paste the Tracking ID inside the box and click Save. You have successfully set up Google Analytics in the Shopify store. After 24hrs to a few days, you can view data collected by Google Analytics.
This is just the first step to set up Google Analytics. If you have a large e-commerce store, you must upgrade to Shopify premium plans.
v) Installing Google Analytics to Squarespace Website
You can use Google Analytics to track the performance of the Squarespace site. The setup is easy and can be done in a few minutes.
Sign in to the Squarespace account and open Dashboard. Navigate to Settings and choose the Advanced option from the bottom of the Dashboard. From the Advanced options, select External API Keys.
After that, you’ll see a Google Analytics Account Field section. Paste the tracking code you copied from Google Analytics in the box, and it’s done.
After 1-2 days, GA will display your website data.
vi) Add tracking code to Static Website
A static website is built using HTML code and contains static content. The content doesn’t change with the user’s action and remains static. Few examples of a static website are: Historical events website, Forms, Sports Results, etc. Information is these sites are not changed with the flow of time.
Adding Google Analytics tracking on static websites is easy as compared to a dynamic site.
First, copy the tracking code from Google Analytics and paste it on each page you’d like to track in Google Analytics. After that find your website page and add code to the header section of each page.
Now you can test the code by going to Google Analytics Dashboard.
E. How to Use Google Analytics Reports? (Explained)
Google Analytics displays the interaction of your site visitors in the form of reports. These reports give an overall view of how well your website performs and how your audience uses it. It helps you get an idea of the improvements that make your site better in the coming days.
The reports are located in the Report Section of the Analytics dashboard. You can access your Google Analytics Reports by going to this page: https://analytics.google.com/analytics/.
Here we’ll discuss all the reports that are available in Google Analytics.
- Realtime Reports
- Audience Reports
- Acquisition Reports
- Behavior Reports
- Conversion Reports
- Custom Reports
1. Realtime Reports
Realtime Reports display the information about users and their activities on your site in real-time or as soon as it occurs on your site.
The reports are updated continuously with every single change. It usually analyzes how many active users are on site right now, location, top active pages, pageview (per sec/min), and many more.
You can find the Realtime reports on the left sidebar of the GA dashboard under Reports. Moreover, the Realtime Report looks like this.
Generally, Realtime Reports consist of sub-categories under it. They are listed below.
- Traffic Source
The Overview section displays the number of active users on the website, the device used (mobile or other), the page view per sec /min, top referrals, top keywords, top active pages, etc.
The location section gives real-time data on visitor’s current geographical addresses. There you can see the number of active users on your site along with pageviews (sec/min).
Below there is a list of countries and the number of active users in the form of a percentage. Moreover, the report also shows the location in the form of a map. When you click on the map, it shows the specific country with the number of active users.
This section shows different sources that send traffic to your website. It may be direct, referred, search engine, and others. When you view the traffic source page, you’ll see 2 metrics: Active Users and Pageviews.
Active Users count the number of users engaged with your website within the last 5 minutes. On the other hand, the Pageview displays reports of the total number of pages viewed of the last 30min.
These metrics show reports in a table with Medium, Source, and Active Users.
The content section of GA shows a detailed report of visitor’s interaction throughout every page. It shows the URL of the current page users are viewing along with the page title. Also, you can view the percentage of active users on each of your pages.
Event tracks actions like clicking links, buttons that people do on your site. It shows the live events happening on the website.
Let’s say when a user enters a website and clicks on the video to play. After some time, they pause it and then stop. So, this play, pause, and stop are the events of the user on your site.
When you open the event page, there is a table with Event Category, Event Action, and Active Users.
Conversion tracks the goal that you set in Google Analytics. The Conversion section of the Realtime report shows the goal with the number of active users. If you want to view the goal report of the last 30 minutes, click on Goal Hits.
Hence ,that’s all about Realtime reports. Now let’s move towards Audience Report.
2. Audience Reports
Audience Reports let you analyze and better understand the characteristics of users. It gives information on how many users visited your site, who they are, locations, and all other small details, even their demographics data.
You can find the Audience Reports on the left sidebar of the GA dashboard under Reports. It lies below the Realtime Reports.
Generally, the Audience Reports include sub-categories under it. They’re listed below.
- Active Users
- Lifetime Value
- Cohort Analysis
- Cross Device
- Users Flow
The Overview section shows a summary of the Audience report. You can get all the users’ reports, new users, sessions, demography, language, device, etc.
At the top of the overview, you can see a graph that shows the number of sessions, bounce rate, user, average session duration, and many more.
This report can show the number of active users on your site. It displays the report in the form of a graph, and you can view the user’s number of present days, last 7,14, and 30 days also.
If your site content encourages the user to visit or return to your site, you’ll see this number increasing with duration of time.
Lifetime Value shows revenue per user in 90 days after acquition.
The demographics report is related to user age and gender. For more detail, you can go to age and gender categories from the GA dashboard.
Interest report gives an idea on visitor’s preferences on your web content. You can get an overview of what is the topic in general that your audience is interested in.
This helps you to generate different marketing strategies for related content. E.g., If your audiences are interested in Media and Entertainment, you can now create more content on it.
It shows the data in percentage with different categories like the affinity category, in-market segment, and other categories.
This report will give an overview of the language and location of the users. GA collects the language report from the user’s browser as the browser uses code to set the language. It uses English as en-us, en-UK, en, etc.
Moreover, analytics can track users’ continent, subcontinent, country, and city from their browser’s IP address. It displays the data on the map. You can use the table to view the full report of both language and location. It shows active users, new users, returned users’ data, and many more.
The behavior section reports everything you want to know about your content. It consists of 5 different categories.
- New vs. returning – It displays a report on how often new users visit your site or return back again.
- Engagement – Engagement reports measure the time a user spends on your website. Simply, it’s the visit duration of users on your site.
- Technology – The technology report gives an overview of which browser and network users are using for your site.
- Session Quality – Analytics measures the quality of the session by giving a score from 0-100. This score is based on how a user performs on your site. If the score is from 50-100, it means the user has engaged well with your site. Particularly, a low score determines the user is not spending enough time on your site.
Mobile report overview the different device users use for your site. It may be a phone, tablet, desktop.
The ‘Devices’ report lets you see additional details about the devices like mobile device name, mobile brand, service provider, operating system, etc.
This report gives a graphical flow on how users are interacting with your website. It shows all the paths users take from the starting page to the existing page.
Here’s how it looks.
3. Acquisition Reports
The acquisition report gives an overview of all the channels or sources that are sending high traffic to your site. Moreover, it compares the performance of these channels and how they are useful in terms of engagement and conversion.
You can find the Acquisition Reports on the left sidebar of GA dashboard under Reports. It lies below the Audience Reports.
Generally, the Acquisition Reports consist of sub-categories under them. They are listed below.
- All Traffic
- Google Ads
- Search Console
The overview section shows all the summary reports of the Acquisition Reports.
You can see a pie chart at the top of the overview page that gives you the ratio of different traffic sending sources. Hence, a high number of ratios indicate a high amount of traffic coming from the source.
When you scroll down, there is a table displaying a report on how all sources are performing.
All Traffic section gives a clear idea about the different sources or sends high traffic to your site.
To view this, you can navigate to its subcategories. After that, you’ll see all the channels, sources, mediums, and referrals from which users came. Also, it includes bounce rate, new users’ traffic rate, and many more.
Google Ads displays traffic coming from your ads, campaigns, keywords, or URL searches. But you’ll see this data only if you’ve created SEM campaigns on Google Ads and connected your Google Ads account with Analytics. If you haven’t used Google Ads, then nothing will appear here.
Search Console displays a report on your site performance. From here, you see from which countries or devices the traffic are coming the most.
- The landing page gives you an overview of the most popular landing page on the website that has got the most traffic.
- Countries section displays a report on traffic coming from different countries. Also, you can see the name of countries that are sending high traffic to your site.
- The devices section provides data on the type of device people are using for your site. It analyzes reports on the device type that is sending high traffic.
- The queries section reports on different keywords and phrases that visitors use to find your side. Also, it shows the impression, clicks, and click-through rate of each keyword.
The social section gives you information about traffic coming to your site from different social channels. They may be a social network, social plugin, and others.
- Network Referrals – It shows the different social sites that send traffic to your site. They may be Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and more.
- Landing Pages – The landing pages are pages where the users come from the social networks land.
- User Flow- It displays a report on a path after coming to your site from social networks.
This section provides reports of visitors coming from the campaign you have set up. It also calculates which campaigns have provided high-quality traffic to your website.
4. Behavior Reports
Behavior Reports give you an understanding of how a user is behaving with your content on the website. Also, you can find what page people visit and what action they take while visiting the website.
You can find the Behavior Reports on the left sidebar of GA dashboard under Reports. They lie below the Acquisition Reports.
Generally, Behavior Reports consists of Subcategories under it which are listed below.
- Behavior Flow
- Site Content
- Site Speed
The overview section reports on page views, unique page views, average time on page. It shows how people behave with your site content, the actions they are taking on your site, and so on.
There is a graphical representation of page view, unique page view, exit percentage, and others on the overview page. When you scroll the report, there is a table displaying pages from your site with the page’s number of viewers
This report shows how users flow through different content of your site. It shows the path taken by the user when moving from one event to another.
When you view the Behavior page, it displays the first-page user view to the last page. It also gives a guide on how long your visitors stayed on your site.
Site Content is related to how users interact with every page of your site. This gives clear insights on which pages the users are more engaged with. Likewise, it’s divided into 4 subcategories to provide detailed guidelines on the Site Content report.
- All Pages – It provides reports of your site’s pages, links, and how users behave with them. The data is displayed on a table with the total number of page views, bounce rate, exit rate, etc. In this case, if the bounce rate, exit rate are high, you must work on such pages.
- Content Drilldown – It makes it easy to read all page reports by grouping all your website pages by the folder they are in. If you click on one of the folders, it displays all the pages inside it.
- Landing Pages – The landing pages refer to the pages from where visitors entered your website. The home page may have the highest number of landings, but it depends on your site. When you look at the landing page report, it shows session time, bounce rate, revenue, and more.
- Exit Pages – Exit pages show the pages from where visitors are leaving your website. From this report, you can work on the pages having a high exit rate. Also, focus on how to keep your visitors engaged for a longer period of time on your page.
Site Speed report checks and gives information on each of your website pages’ speed. Also, it ensures that visitors can load and interact with your website in a given time frame.
This is a really important metric as site speed is an essential thing for the website’s improvement. More visitors are likely to visit your site only when it has a good speed.
Site search displays the reports about the visitors who use the search box to find information, products, or other things on your website. When you look at its report, you can get how many users search your site and the search term used by them.
Events reports give an overall idea about user interaction on the website. This is the best method to know what action users are performing on your site. Events may be files downloaded, playing video, clicking an internal or external link, saving images, etc.
This report is useful if you’re connecting your AdSense account with your Google Analytics account. From this, you can get access to different metrics like click-through rates, revenue, and overall impressions.
The Publisher page displays the top pages that have generated the most AdSense revenue. Similarly, Publisher Referrals displays top referring URLs that are converting visitors to customers through AdSense ads on your site.
Experiments allow you to perform small A/B tests to compare page variations and whether they are meeting the specified goals.
5. Conversion Reports
Conversion Reports give a clear understanding of how well your website performs to achieve predefined goals.
Lets look at its subcategories which are listed below:
- Multi-Channel Funnels
Goals are a mechanism that tracks the visitor’s specific action after they complete it on your website. Every website has its own goals like purchase, add to carts, sign in, etc. Goals measure all these activities when visitors enter the website and how well the website’s target objective is achieved.
To access the Goals report, navigate to Overview>Goals>Conversion from the GA dashboard.
Overview – This section shows a graphical representation of Goal completion on your website. Below there you can see the total number of Goal completion along with conversion rate, purchased completed, engaged users, and others.
Ecommerce reports are mostly used by business websites focusing on selling products online. It gives an overview of the customer’s journey from starting until they purchase products.
So, when you look at its report page, there is a graphical representation of the revenue and eCommerce Conversion rate. You’ll also get to know more on average order value, unique purchase, purchase quantity, etc.
Multi-channel Funnels gives an overview of all the marketing channels responsible for driving visitors to the goal point.
When you look at its overview report, there’s a graphical visualization of the total number of conversions and the list of channels with the percentage of total conversion at each channel.
6. Custom Reports
Every business has its own goal and performance indicators. The default reports you get within GA may not sometimes fit with your business goal. That’s where you need a Custom report.
The Custom report shows only the information you want to see. You can choose different reporting categories, dimensions, metrics, and many more.
To create custom reports, navigate to Customization > Custom Report and create one. It looks something like this.
F. Dimension and Metrics in GA
Google Analytics shows all of its data in the form of reports. These reports contain two types of data: Dimensions and Metrics.
What are Dimensions in Google Analytics?
Dimensions are attributes of your data. They are qualitative characteristics associated with visitors of your website.
Moreover, the characteristics include your customer’s age, location, language, the device they are using, and many more.
E.g., If a 30-year-old man from the United States accesses your site from a Facebook ad via desktop, the dimension will be as follows.
- Gender- Male
- Age- 30-35
- Location – United State
- Source – Facebook
- Device – Desktop
- Browser – Chrome/Firefox/Internet Explorer etc.
Dimensions are of two types:
- Primary Dimensions
- Secondary Dimensions
Look at the image above. Here we’re tracking visitors Browser and OS(Operating System used by them when they are visiting the website.
In the first column above the data table, you can see ‘Primary Dimension.’ Since we in the Browser & OS report, the primary dimensions are Browser, Operating System, Screen Resolution, Screen Colors, Flash Versions, Other. Here we’re tracking the primary Dimension ‘Browser.’ Thus, the browser is listed in the first column and the country name sorted under it is different from each other.
If you want to change the primary dimension, click on the list of primary dimension list options above the data table, and apply it.
Remember that the primary dimension is already set to default by Google Analytics, but you can choose other options to view more unique perspective data.
Below the Primary Dimension lies the Secondary Dimension. They define the primary dimension data in a more detailed view in the same table of primary dimension.
In the above example, the primary dimension is the Browser, and there is no secondary dimension. Now here we select the secondary dimension and choose Device Category.
Device category shows a report on the user device they are using like mobile, tablet, or desktop.
It looks something like this
What are Metrics in Google Analytics?
Metrics are the numerical representation of data. They express user’s activity on your site in the form of numbers, sums, averages, and ratios.
For example – Dimension lets you know user location, but metrics will give information on how many users visited your site from that location.
Other examples of Metrics include:
- Goal Completion
- Bounce rate
Finding Metrics in Analytics report
In the above image Users, New Users, Sessions, Bounce Rate, etc are the metrics.
Metrics are listed in the first column of the data table. By default, Google Analytics has grouped the most common metrics into Acquisition, Behavior, and Conversion metrics.
The number of users and session duration are the users’ metrics who use chrome from desktop to visit your site in the above image.
And that’s a wrap!
Adding Google Analytics to your site is an important task as it helps to grow your website greatly.
To summarize, Google Analytics is a powerful tool that can be used to improve website performance. Here we’ve covered a lot of content from setting up a Google Analytics account to analyzing the reports.
Hope you enjoyed this beginner’s guide to Google Analytics. Our goal is to help you set up Google Analytics correctly for your websites.
In addition to Google Analytics, you may want to implement other different types of digital marketing and SEO strategies to improve your site performance.
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