Hello! Welcome to our introduction to web analytics. In this video we’ll be going over what web analytics is, a quick overview of the kinds of insights it can give you, and a taste for how to get started with analytics yourself.
Okay, let’s get started.
So, what is web analytics, exactly? Well, it’s all about using the data you can collect from your website to give you insights about your business.
There are lots of web analytics tools out there, and they can do a variety of things. Since we’re just getting started, we’ll focus on the basics, and talk about the ways analytics can help you, no matter which specific tool you use.
Web analytics helps you by providing data. First, let’s look at the different types.
A “metric” is basically anything you can count. “Unique Visitors” is a good example. “Time Spent On Site” is another. If you sell things on your website, you can track how much money you’re making or how many of a certain product you’re selling. If your goal is to get people to read your website, you can track the number of times someone looked at a blog post or the amount of time they spent on it. All of these things are “metrics.”
Next, you’ll generally analyze your metrics by using what are called “dimensions.” But let’s come back to that in just a minute.
When you’re first starting out with analytics, you might feel like you’re swimming in an ocean of metrics, but you’ll quickly get used to having all this data.
So, what do you do with it?
Well, you can use web analytics tools to learn more about your website visitors.
Let’s say someone places an order, downloads driving directions to your shop, fills out a contact form, or does something else that you want them to do when they’re visiting your site. This is known as a “conversion.”
Web analytics tools can tell you if the “conversion rate”, or the amount of people that visit and then convert on one of your goals, changes based on where they came from, whether they’d been there before, or even the type of device they’re using.
So let’s look at that last one. If you know which devices your site is working best and worst on, you can identify specific areas of strength to build on and areas you’ll need to improve.
You’ll notice in that example that we were comparing “metrics” of conversions or conversion rates, but we were breaking it down by the device they used. The “device” data we’re collecting is called a “dimension,” and as promised, it’s time to talk about those next.
Generally, a dimension is any kind of data you can use to describe something you’re tracking with words.
Dimensions include things like the device type, what browsers visitors use, their geographic locations, and much, much more.
By taking your metrics and “slicing” them with dimensions, you can find answers to very specific, detailed business questions, like “which devices are people finding it easiest to convert on the goals of my website?”
And that’s just one of many questions you can answer with web analytics.
Want to know what time of day most people are visiting your website? Take your “Visitors” metric and break that down by an “Hour of Day” dimension.
How about finding out which marketing campaigns are making the most sales? Take your “Conversions” metric, and break it down by a “Campaign” dimension.
As you dive into your own web analytics reports, you’ll be able to see all the metrics and dimensions being tracked, and you can combine them and slice and dice them to answer the questions you care most about.
If you haven’t started with an analytics tool yet, you’ll want to select and install one. Most have a pretty similar set up.
First, you’ll need to copy and paste some special code onto your web pages. Next, while these tools will track a lot of things on their own, you might want to configure them to track the specific things that are unique to your business and your goals.
We hope you’re getting excited about all the amazing insights you can get from web analytics tools. It’s another important tool in your online arsenal, but if this seems like a lot to take in, don’t worry.
If you stick with us, we’re going to cover all the terminology and the basics of how you can use web analytics to measure how you’re doing with digital. We’ll cover how to see whether visitors convert on your goals, and how to find out which kinds of visitors perform better than others. On top of that, we’ll even go into using analytics to measure and improve your paid and organic search engine campaigns.
- the kind of data web analytics can provide
- how to understand that data
- how simple it is to get started.