By Charlie Craine
If you have a Google Analytics account and (at least) occasionally use it to check what people are doing on your website then this article isn’t necessarily for you. We’ll have a follow-up article on what you should be doing to get the most out of Google Analytics soon, but this article is for those of you without a Google Analytics account or who never check their account.
What would you say if someone asked, “Why do you have a website?” Your immediate answer might be, “Because everyone has to have a website.” Or you might say your site is for marketing, leads or “insert reason here.”
But, if you do not have Google Analytics installed on your website (or you never check it!), how do you know you are fulfilling any of those goals for having the website? Well, you don’t.
This post isn’t about how to use Google Analytics it’s about why you should be using it and should get it setup immediately. And yes, we can help you with that. If you don’t have Google Analytics on your website or you never check your account, try to answer the following questions:
- How do people find your website?
- Why do they come to your website?
- Did someone contact you because of your website?
- What is the most frequently used page on your website?
- Is your website being used by people on their phones or tablets?
- What state or country are your website visitors in?
Having (and using) Google Analytics on your website will help you answer questions like this. If you can’t those questions then you better start gathering that information. Otherwise, why bother with the website?
Companies are getting smarter online, and you can bet your competitors are getting it. We don’t even build a website and launch it for a client without installing Google Analytics, and now clients are having us manage their Google Analytics reporting for them to ensure the numbers get pulled, analyzed and reported regularly. Without these numbers, how do you know how well your website is performing or whether or not your digital marketing efforts drive people to the desired parts of your website?
Don’t let the word analytics scare you. Google Analytics is free and relatively easy to use. Even if you only look at it at a very high level, you are still far better off than not knowing anything about your website’s traffic. Plus, it’s easy for someone to help you understand these metrics –but neither is possible if you don’t have Google Analytics setup at all.
Your website isn’t just a billboard – you can know a lot about your visitors. There is no better way to formulate a strategy and to build online marketing campaigns than to know what works and what doesn’t work. A website isn’t poured in concrete – it can change, be tweaked, updated a/b tested, etc. until you find the right mix that gets the absolute best out of your website and helps drive leads, marketing, etc. for your company. But you can only do that effectively with performance data.
Charlie Craine is the Director of Emedia for Meister Media. If you have any questions about installing Google Analytics on your website or understanding the numbers you do have, contact him at 440/602-9171 or firstname.lastname@example.org.