Any good carpenter will tell you that if you don’t have the right tools for the job you will not be very successful. One of the best tools available to anyone is the free Google Analytics Tool. This allows you to collect tons of data regarding how people interact with your website, such as:
Number of visits
Time on site
Time on specific pages
What other sites led them to yours
If this is all new to you, you can be overwhelmed with all the data, resulting in not knowing what to do with it. But as with anything that is important, learning how to understand analytics and then being able to implement necessary changes is essential to success and growth.
1. Traffic Sources
Most of the time your first-time visitors will land on your site through an external link instead of typing in your specific URL. These external pages that link to your site are your traffic sources. The main traffic sources come from search engines, social media, email campaigns, and links from external sites. If you can develop and grow these four sources of traffic you will be amazed at the results! Even though search engines have more potential to bring in the most traffic, all four are important.
2. New and Returning Visitors (“HITS” and “BOUNCE RATES”)
People value their time more than ever today. They demand quick, accurate results for their searches, and they will not spend long looking for the answer. When a visitor lands on your website but then leaves without going any further, this is called a “bounce.” The percentage of these types of visits get measured against the overall traffic, which makes up your bounce rate. This will reveal if there are any outstanding usability issues with your website/if it is user-friendly or not. A high bounce rate is not good, and can be due to long loading times or a non-user-friendly navigation menu. Many times the site is just unattractive and the visitor leaves, just like you would if you walked into a grocery store that was unorganized and wasn’t clean.
Visitors are everything! It’s one thing to have a new visitor, but it’s gold if they return. Typically if your recurring traffic is 30% of your total traffic you are on the right track. If it’s below 20% your site isn’t engaging visitors like it could. The right analytic tool can track Pageview Hits, Event Hits, Transaction/Ecommerce Hits and more. You can also track items searched and/or bought, as well as the amount spent. How beneficial!!
3. Desktop and Mobile Visits
More and more people are using their phones as opposed to the desktop computer or laptop. Mobile phones are easily accessed, are usually within reach, and are carried everywhere we go. This means your website needs to offer a strong mobile experience.
By analyzing mobile traffic you can track the percentage of users on your site that are doing so via their smartphones. Older websites tend to only focus on the desktop experience, and aren’t responsive sites. It may be that you need to update and refresh your website. Regardless, if you are seeing more desktop traffic than mobile, it is still a good idea to track both, keeping your site updated and designed to facilitate these platforms.
4. Overall Traffic
The number of visits you get over a specific time frame is your web traffic measurement. This is important because it reveals if your site is getting the attention and results you desire. Keep in mind that in the beginning stages of your site your numbers may be low - but over time you should see consistent growth.
If you are not showing up in the first few pages of a Google search, odds are that you will not be found, and there will be little, if any, traffic. At VisionAmp our websites are built with data-management layers and the technology to target your specific audience. We guarantee you can have a website that not only generates more traffic and income, but one that will provide a great customer experience online.
Well, that may not be a word, but you get the drift. Do you have the time to take the steps necessary in order to insure that your customers can find you? If people cannot find you, they cannot buy from you. If they cannot buy from you, your business will not succeed.
Since 2007, VisionAmp has been “Building websites that work!” We understand and implement analytics to your advantage like no other company in town. Our team, with over 100 years of combined experience, can help your business enhance its online presence, and improve its positioning on Google to spread the word about your company, its goals, products, and purpose.
For more information, or to speak with a member of the VisionAmp team, give us a call today.
-Written by David Jackson, VisionAmp Content Specialist