Google Analytics

Google Analytics

Every website on Digital Commons platform has Google Analytics module enabled. Google tracks and collects broad range of data about your website and your site visitors behavior. Free Google Analytics data reports have information about your website starting from the day that your site was launched on our platform. Let’s find out how to use this information to help drive your decisions on everything from content creation to structuring your web design.

Intro to Google Analytics

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Start by logging into your agency Google Analytics account https://analytics.google.com/ with your agency @gmail and password.  We recommend creating shared @gmail account for your web team to avoid lapse of access to Google Analytics due to staff changes.

Need help with access to Google Analytics – open Service Now Website Analytics support ticket with Digital Commons team.

Google collects many data metrics based on the pageviews - each time someone visits one of your pages, information collected about device and browser used, number of pages visited. Visitor’s time on the website is called a session, it begins with a pageview hit when the user first visits the website, and it continues until they ultimately leave the site. Visitor could trigger an event when do something on your site, for example, downloading document or playing a video. Here are some key definitions you’ll need:

  • Pageviews - A view, or load request, of a specific page. It’s the total number of times visitors downloaded a page during a specific date range. This includes the same person looking at your page 5 times in one session, or 5 different people looking at your page one time. This will tell you if the same people are coming back to your site or are they one and done.
     
  • Unique Pageviews - These are pageviews made by unique, or individual, visitors in a specific date range. This number represents those 5 different people looking at your page in one session (5 unique pageviews), rather than the one person refreshing or reloading their screen (one unique pageview). This can show how many people are visiting your site.
     
  • Average Time on Page - The average time visitors are staying on that page. This may not be something you need to be overly concerned about, but it is a good indicator if people are sticking around (let’s say on a blog or press release page, you’d like this number to be higher than normal) or if people are finding what they need quickly (on an FAQ or Forms page where visitors are finding what they need and leaving, you’d like this number to be low).
     
  • Entrance - The number of visitors entering your website through that specific page. Your homepage should have the highest number of entrances, unless there is an internal page that ranks high in Google search results.
     
  • Bounce Rate - This percentage shows the rate of single-page visits to your website. If someone visits a page of your website, and then exits that same page (leaving your website completely), that counts towards your bounce rate.
     
  • Exit Rate - Not to be confused with the Bounce Rate, this rate is the percentage of site exits from your website, regardless of how many pages a user has viewed. It’s calculated by dividing exits into total pageviews, and therefore is never 100%.
     
  • Unique Visitors - This is the number of Users visiting your website. The initial session by a user during your specific date range is counted as a visit and a visitor. Much like the unique pageviews, this only counts visits by users once, and not every time they visit the website during your specific date range.
     
  • Visits - The number of individual sessions started by all visitors to your website, no matter how many sessions they start. If a user is inactive on your site for 30 minutes or more, any future activity is attributed to a new session. Users that leave your site and return within 30 minutes are counted as part of the original session.

Google Analytics presents data collected in the form of several reports to help you find needed information faster:

  • Realtime Report – overview of the current traffic on the website.
  • Audience Report – information about your site visitors, geography, platforms, devices.
  • Acquisitions Report – where your visitors came from, how they found your website.
  • Behavior Report – what are visitors doing while on your site.

Google Analytics allows you to set up a Date Range and intervals: Day, Week, Month.

Those settings stay active during whole session, until you change it or finish your Google Analytics session.

Google Analytics date range setup

Set up Compare To date range to compare reports with the last year or customized period data. 

Google Analytics comparison range set up

 Add Annotations notes to document website changes or specific events dates. Available on Audience > Overview and Behavior >Overview reports.

Google Analytics Annotations set up

The Search box at the top of your Google Analytics lets you:

  • Search for reports
  • Ask questions about your data
  • Search help content
Google Analytics search box

Insights – the Analytics Intelligence panel makes it easier to discover what’s important in your data and also lets you ask questions about your data. Great way to learn more about your website Monthly Trends, Basic Performance, Geographic Analysis etc.

Google Analytics Insights tab