In: Ecommerce, Web Design

Google Analytics Explained: An Overview

Jun 27, 2014

Google Analytics is the most powerful analytics tool out there for website owners, website developers or marketing experts. Google analytics offers many useful metrics regarding your website and your visitors. Signing up on Google Analytics is simple and also free. This article is to guide you through some of the overwhelming data so you can find and measure the right metrics for your own (website’s) good. As ecommerce and website marketing specialists, we at ATAK Interactive want to educate you about the basics of Google Analytics and how to use it in the most efficient way, for you. In future posts we will dive into more detail, but this article is our initial overview. We’ll post more about Google Analytics in the following weeks; those posts will be more specific and detailed, honing into specific sections, but let’s start with the basics.



When Logging In

First of all, every ratio and number you need, for now, is available on your Google Analytics accounts sidebar (on the left). One does not need to do any extra moves to activate those numbers, just log-in.


Your Target Audience

By far, the best way to identify your target market and get to know more about them is to give them a survey, but that takes time and money. Google Analytics is able to check and deliver clever metrics; easy and free. On the left of your Google Analytics account’s dashboard you will see an “Audience” tab under Standard Reports. This tab gives you important information about who is visiting your website. You can find some statistics about the location of your visitors, the technology that they use such as browser type, or other user demographics. One can accurately see how many visitors use their smartphones, tablets, or computers. Essentially, one will even see visitors’ device choices when visiting a site. If many of your visitors are coming from a mobile device you may what to ask yourself, “Do I have a mobile friendly website?” You may need to think about upgrading to a  “responsive design” for your website.



How Do Your Visitors Find Your Website?

To see where your visitors come to your website from, you should be aware of the “Acquisitions” tab. We recommend two reports from that section for you to be able to see how users find your website. First click on “All Traffic”, which will tell you how your visitors discovered your site; typing your domain into their browser, or by clicking to a link on a search engine, or other. The other essential report will be in the “All Referrals” section to find all sources where a user clicked from another website and transferred to your website. This report doesn’t show any total traffic or direct visitors, but it’s beneficial to see your referral websites where one can possible realize where efforts can best be spent to increase those referral numbers with certain partners.


Food for thought: If you are on social media platforms, you should use the “Social Media” reports section to check which platforms send you more traffic so you can also decide where efforts should be spent and improved on (or avoided due to lack of return).


Want More Traffic?

After we have figured out how visitors come to a website and which devices or platforms they are using we can then act more strategically and accurately to increase website traffic. If one knows that most visitors come from Facebook, one should invest and improve his or her Facebook campaign. If you invest a lot into Pinterest and you only get a few poor leads from there then cancel it or change your strategy. Regarding visitor demographics, one can implement more accurate (targeted) marketing campaigns to appeal to specific user types. It’s all about getting to know your target audience and where are they coming from. Google Analytics helps a lot in this discovery process.


Website Performance

Another important piece to watch is how particular pieces/pages of your website perform. Google Analytics has an “All Pages” report under Behavior and Site Content. This report will illustrate which pages and/or posts are getting traffic and for how long. We suggest for you to check 3 crucial metrics to analyze and interpret this report better; page views, average time on page, and bounce rates.



  • “Page Views” - Page views are the number of visitors that loaded your page.


  • “Average Time On Page” - This metric is the time that your visitors spend on a specific page. You can check all your pages and see which are more popular. More popular pages are pages users spend the most time on. This means the page is interesting. Pages with a low average time may need to be improved with more call to action, better graphics, and more effective text/content. Video can also help.


  • “Bounce Rate” - From a website marketing and ecommerce point of view, the bounce rate metric is one of the most important metrics on Google Analytics. The bounce rate is the percentage that shows how many visitors left your site immediately after they came. If you have a high bounce rate that means your website is receiving the insignificant traffic from irrelevant audiences.


These on site behavioral metrics will show you if your visitors are really spending time on your website by reading your blog or checking your content or not. After you analyze these metrics you can then take a more educated approach when thinking about redesign or content change to increase your average time and page views. Taking these tactics eventually decrease your bounce rates.



Another significant tool to check and see is loading speed of your website and pages. No one wants a slow website as its pretty obvious users will just come and leave. The behavior tab has site speed and page timings so you can find the loading speeds for every single page, and also see suggestions about how to improve your speed on the bottom of the page. You should try to apply those suggestions to increase your speed.


In conclusion, ATAK Interactive believes these free metrics from Google Analytics are incredible for many areas of website management and marketing. We will continue to go deeper on Google Analytics with our next blog articles, but as ecommerce and website marketing specialists we are always here to help grow your online exposure and help your business to get more sales online. To get a free consultation or advice please call us 1-855-472-1892 or visit our website www.atakinteractive.com

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