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Whether your website is brand new or you’re old friends, Google Analytics is a key tool for your marketing arsenal. But when you’re new to the whole world of website metrics, it can be overwhelming. In this Marketing Tech Teardown, we’ll take a look at how to use Google Analytics for Beginners.
What is Google Analytics?
Google Analytics is a service that lets you track traffic to your website, and what people do once they get there. Google Analytics 360 is also available for the enterprise. For beginners, the free version will do everything we need.
To use Google Analytics, you must create an account with Google, and install some tracking code on your website. You only have to do this once in order to track all of your visitors and their behavior.
Why do I need Google Analytics?
Google Analytics gives you tons of data about your website visitors. You can get insights into all kinds of things, like where your visitors live, what technology (like computer and phone type, and what browser they use) to visit your site, and how they navigated once they were there.
When you’re early in building your business, all this may not seem very important to you. It’s great to look back over time and see how your traffic has grown over time.
Plus, as you’re doing things like optimizing your website for mobile, knowing what types of devices your customers are using can help you make sure you’re optimizing for your customer, not just for your own device.
Did I mention that Google Analytics can also help you track things like how people are finding your site (referrals), and where they are converting (i.e., signing up for your stuff)? That’s important no matter how old your site is. Plus, it gets even more important when you start spending money on promoting your site.
If your business is more mature and you haven’t been using analytics, it’s not too late. If you get started with Google Analytics today, you’ll start collecting data that you can use in the future to make key decisions about your business.
How do I get started with Google Analytics?
Getting started with Google Analytics is a two-step process:
- Create an account.
- Add tracking code to your website. Google will walk you through how to add the code to your website. If you’re not comfortable editing the code on your site, contact your web developer.
I highly recommend adding the code using Google Tag Manager, no matter what platform you’re using. With Google Tag Manager, you can add more tracking code to your website without having to edit your website code again. It’s really convenient when you want to do things like add a Facebook Tracking Pixel to your website, or other conversion code.
How to Install Google Tag Manager on WordPress (from WPBeginner)
How to Install Google Tag Manager on SquareSpace (From YoWeb)
If you want to add the code directly to your site, there are many free plugins for WordPress to add Google Analytics. There are also instructions on how to add Google Analytics to Squarespace.
Whichever method you choose, just make sure you choose ONLY one. Otherwise, you may end up with duplicate data.
Within a few hours (depending on how much traffic you get), you’ll start seeing information about your website.
Read Part 2: The Google Analytics Glossary
Read Part 3: Creating Google Analytics Goals
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