Measuring Success: Speaking Digital with Google Analytics

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“What marketer isn’t technical? Who hasn’t entered a tracking code onto a website, or created last-minute tag attributions?” begins today’s session on Google Analytics (GA). What marketer isn’t technical, indeed. I know I’m guilty of it: using words and concepts that leave clients in the dark.

With that in mind, let’s be honest: GA is a fascinating and terrifying place. It’s like a CRM (like Marketo or Pardot), only on steroids. You can get really granular in your marketing analysis when you’re running your reporting out of GA, but unless you know what you’re looking for, it can be overwhelming.

So, for today’s lessons from Inbound17, here are a few high-level things web tracking can help you find.

What you need to know

Knowing the following metrics will aid in your websites growth-drive design (GDD). If you aren’t familiar with GDD, it’s the process of making minor website information restructures to better suit your target persona. One month, you can add more content to your Executive Information page; another month you could add a banner to your services page. Over time, the data you retrieve from web tracking methods gives you the information to make your website bigger/faster/stronger/more efficient.

google analytics suite

Traffic Source

Where do your visitors come from? Are you getting them from organic search (somewhat unlikely)? Ramping up on your SEO would be the next step for you. Are they coming from indirect sources like hyperlinks from another page? It may be time to invest in your PR strategy.

Page Visit

How many people are visiting a particular page? For example, if you have a website with an About Us, a Blog, and Resources in the menu bar, it’s useful to know which of those pages visitors want to see most.

Bounce Rate / Time on Page

Once visitors are on a page, how much time are they spending on there? Do they give a quick glance and move on, or are they actually reading through? If you have a high proportion of people merely glancing (bounce rate), what information were your visitors looking for that your page is lacking?

Readthrough Rate

If a visitor is spending some time on a page, how much of the information are they processing? Readthrough rate gauges how far down readers scroll to get to what they are looking for. If you have more than a minute spent on a page and no one is scrolling, maybe you put a little too much information at the top of the page. While it’s always a good idea to put the most important stuff higher up, you want to disseminate the information so that you keep the readers involved throughout the content on that page.

Authorship

If you have a multi-author blog, you can easily discover which author has the most audience engagement and leverage his/her influencer status.

Form Fills

A form fill is the holy grail of tracked information. Why? Tracking codes will cookie a visitor’s browser history, but until that visitor gives you their contact information, there’s nothing you can do to really get them back (short of a remarketing campaign – but more on that later). A form fill ensures that you can keep in touch with a contact throughout their sales process.

But what are you tracking with form fills? Isn’t collecting contact info enough? There’s something to learn from the form itself. If you have a newsletter signup form on different pages of your website, which form is most successful? Is a sidebar more effective than a banner image or a footer? Are visitors submitting a form to download a financial chart but not touching your “contact us”?

In sum

The digital marketing world is not as scary as it seems. In fact, there are more ways of determining marketing ROI than ever using digital methods. Above all, tracking helps you determine whether your audience is engaging with you in a way that meets your overall marketing goals.

Sadly, today is the last day of Inbound17. Our team had a great time parsing through (and downloading) all this marketing wisdom. Hope you’ve got a lot of new tools in your belt and are inspired to tackle new marketing initiatives. Now get tracking!