Table Of Contents
- What is Google Analytics?
- Historical Data and Its Importance
- Why Sampling is Necessary When Using GA?
- Analyze your website using heatmaps
- Social Media Monitoring Vs. Google Analytics
Google Analytics is an essential tool for any business that wants to understand its website traffic. Google Analytics reports are packed with data giving you a snapshot of your business, but what happens when there is something missing? Google Analytics was not intended to do everything and it's important to understand this. We'll go through five things Google Analytics won't tell you and how to access all of the information you need.
What is Google Analytics?
Google Analytics (GA) is a free tool offered by Google to track activity that occurs on your website. By measuring users' traffic and engagement with your website, you can identify appropriate marketing strategies to increase the quality of leads coming through your site.
Google Analytics makes measuring and monitoring the performance of your website a breeze. This useful tool lets you see information about how many people visit your site, which marketing channel they’re from, the devices they're using, and more.
What Google Analytics Isn’t Telling You?
Analyzing data is a critical part of Google Analytics. It’s the only place you can see your revenue, costs, and sales funnels – all key information for understanding what’s working and what isn’t. Unfortunately, not all marketing information is there, so if you’re looking for more specific data about sales or leads, you may need to pinpoint what is missing and then how to find this information.
Google Analytics is a powerful solution that provides a wealth of insight into your website. This article explains5 important metrics that Google Analytics can't give you and how to find them.
Historical Data and Its Importance
Historic data refers to what happened before the Google Analytics tracking code was added to your website. You can use historical data to better understand your conversion rate, sales funnel, and user behavior, among other things.
Consider the tracking code to be a deep-fryer. Once in the oil, you can see how many fries there are. However, until the deep fryer is in place, you can only guess or presume how many fries passed through.
Track traffic, conversions, and engagement with the Google Analytics tool. I recommend setting this up before your website launches. If you have not already transitioned to Google Analytics 4, make it a priority.
Why Sampling is Necessary When Using GA?
Sampling Data is a process that allows you to analyze a smaller portion of data in order to quickly identify patterns and trends. By using this method, you can determine the best course of action based on the limited amount of information that is available.
What Google Analytics can’t tell you is another instance where you may be missing out on information about your site traffic by sampling. In sampling, the size of an audience is underrepresented relative to its true size. Sampling generally occurs because of the way the data is collected, thus it isn’t something that happens on purpose.
To begin, determine whether your data is being sampled. If you're utilizing a free Google Analytics account, data sampling starts at 400,000 sessions within the specified date. A yellow shield with a checkmark appears at the top of the report when sampling is active. The notice will read "This report is based on N% of sessions."
Simply upgrade to Google Analytics 4 to prevent your data from being sampled. Google Analytics 4 is still available for free and does not have any hit limits.
There’s a condition; the thresholds applied to your data can protect the privacy of users. Sampling data does not guarantee that this privacy is met.
When you are working with a demographic report, you may want to filter out the data from some sections. For example, if your report contains age, gender, or interest categories, you can use a threshold to hide some of that data from the report.
The green checkmark in a default Google Analytics 4 report indicates that the data is 100% non-sampled.
Analyze your website using heatmaps
Google Analytics (GA) provides some great metrics and insights into your website traffic. However, it won't necessarily give you the entire data picture.
Warm colors (red) signify greater values, whereas cool colors (blue) represent smaller values in heat mapping. Heat maps are a useful tool for observing how visitors interact with your website. You can look at things like what they click on — and what they don't click on.
There are three types of website heatmaps:
- Click maps indicate where people click and where they don't click.
- Scroll maps display how far users have scrolled as a percentage of all users.
- Hover maps indicate where the user's cursor is and how it moves.
As a digital marketer, you’re probably familiar with web analytics tools like Google Analytics and Adobe Analytics. Heatmaps are a fantastic way to supplement your current analytics strategy by adding deep insight into how users engage with specific parts of your webpage. These insights are essential when you’re tasked with optimizing a page layout, improving UX, or increasing conversions.
While Google Analytics gives you a heat map, it does not offer the same powerful features as paid services. Nevertheless, it will help you to see where users are clicking and where they are not. You can use this data to figure out what your customers like to read on your website.
You won't find a heat map in your Google Analytics account, though. It's actually Page Analytics, a Chrome extension. As of March 8, 2019, the product has been discontinued and no longer receives updates. Page Analytics Chrome Extension is still working for Google Analytics (standard) users.
The Google Analytics real-time heatmap can be viewed in just a few simple steps.
Step 1: Go to your Extensions toolbar and download Page Analytics by Google.
Step 2: Go to your Google Analytics account and visit a webpage related to it.
Step 3:Enable (turn on) Page Analytics.
Heatmap Extension for Google Analytics
- Ensure to customize view metrics
- Specify a date range
- Choose what you’d like to visualize: Clicks or Goals
- Choose a minimum ratio for display.
- Select heatmap or annotation.
Social Media Monitoring Vs. Google Analytics
Social media monitoring gives you the ability to track your brand mentions, relevant hashtags, and the spread of articles and posts. It gathers all this information in one place for easy access and analysis of your brand's online reputation.
Google Analytics may track user actions and behavior on your website, such as where they came from on social media, which pages they visited, and whether they triggered an action.
Shared Count delivers social share stats and insights if you're comfortable with APIs (Application Programming Interface). Each day, a free account can use 500 API calls.
Observe Customer Behavior
Knowing what the best leads are will help you better your marketing efforts. Because it occurs mostly offline, such as via inbound calls or forms submissions, lead quality is the most difficult type of behavior to track. It's critical to keep track of this information since it can assist you to figure out which marketing campaigns are effective and which aren't.
Business owners are relying on a gut feeling when it comes to determining the quality of leads. The problem with this is that there is no way to accurately quantify whether a lead will ultimately convert into a customer.
The best thing you can do as a marketer to prepare for offline encounters, such as sales calls and in-store visits is to sit in on these calls. Observing the customer's behavior and noting what questions they ask will help you understand what they are looking for.
While Google Tag Manager can be used to "score" fields for lead submissions, this is recommended for experienced Analytics users only. It can be time-consuming and complex to configure correctly. Hopefully, we’ll see a technology that combines online and offline lead quality rating, making it more accessible to small business owners while also providing better data for marketers.
Google Analytics is an amazing free tool for marketers. Understanding which pages and ads drive traffic, and what actions are taken are the building blocks of a successful digital marketing plan. Google Analytics can tell you which page or ad drove traffic to your website, how much time they spent on the site, and if they took any actions on your site. This powerful tool provides access to lots of valuable data – but with hundreds of reports, dashboards, and more it can be hard to know where to start.
Prism Digital, the best Digital Marketing Agency in Dubai, is here to assist you in gaining insights into how users interact with your website and provide the best advice on how to utilize Google Analytics to make the best business decisions. Call us at 04-332-0808 or Send us an email at email@example.com.
About The Author: Lovetto Nazareth
Lovetto Nazareth is a digital marketing consultant and agency owner of Prism Digital. He has been in the advertising and digital marketing business for the last 2 decades and has managed thousands of campaigns and generated millions of dollars of new leads. He is an avid adventure sports enthusiast and a singer-songwriter. Follow him on social media on @Lovetto Nazareth