Today we will be taking a closer look at Google Analytics as part of Sage’s broader guide into the SEO for Startups journey.

You can find more of our content from the SEO for Startups Series here:

  1. 3 Critical SEO Rules that Founders can’t ignore

Google Analytics is a great way to gain a deeper understanding of your viewers. Wondering what Google Analytics is? Not to worry! Whether that’s refocusing your SEO or creating a new marketing plan, this free service from the Google Marketing Platform is an amazing tool to have to grow your page! Welcome to our Google Analytics how to guide!

What are some use cases for Google Analytics?

Building a better understanding of your viewers

The first way that the analytics Google provides can add value to your business is by building up a solid understanding of who consumes your content or engages with your site. This can tell you what demographics are more likely to interact with your pages for extensive periods of time or who needs your services.

Formulating a new strategy

Once you have a great understanding of who your target is, you can use that information to tailor your future decisions. Creating a focused plan for how to more deeply engage your target demographics can be the key to quickly multiplying your volume, and with Google Analytics expressing key data like bounce rates, you can easily create a data-driven strategy that gives you the best possible chance of success.

Tracking business performance

Lastly, after you’ve launched your new strategy, Google Analytics provides live updates to key performance indicators like users, bounce rate, time spent, views, and more! By keeping track of how your new strategy is performing, you can maintain a flexible and focused strategy that’s effectively managed every second of every day.

Which kinds of hits does Google Analytics track?

Google tracks almost every activity you could want to track, from pageview hits to screen view hits, event hits and social interaction hits, e-commerce hits, user timing hits, and even exception hits.

So I’m sold. How do I get started?

Create an account:

The first step of our Google Analytics for beginners guide is to create somewhere for Google to send its data. If you need to create a Google Analytics account, visit google.com/analytics and either create a new account or sign in through an existing Google account to get started. Otherwise, log into Google Analytics to get started!

Set up a new property:

What’s a property? Any website or page you own is your property in this context. First, complete your Google Analytics sign in. Then, go to your Google Analytics dashboard. Click the Admin button, then under the Property column, click Create Property.

You will be prompted for several pieces of information, including the name of the property, and the time zone. There are many advanced options, but if you’re unsure, go into advanced settings and select create both a Google Analytics 4 and Universal Analytics property. This will create both so you can decide later which you wish to use.

Set up a new reporting view:

To get reports on your new property, return to the Admin page, then navigate to the account and property that you want to get reports on. In the View column, select Create View. Choose whether your property is a website or a mobile app, then enter a name and your time zone. Lastly, click Create View and you’re done!

Set up a Google Analytics Site Tag:

To start getting information from the websites you want Google to track, you first need to let Google into your website. Do this by setting up a site tag by pasting the code Google gives you after the openingtag of each page of your website that you want analytics on. 

What is your site tag? Under the Admin page, select Account and then Property, like how you set up your new property. In the Property menu, click Tracking Info, then Tracking Code. Your site tag is displayed in a box labeled Website Tracking – Global Site Tag. Simply copy and paste the code found here into your website under the openingtag and you’re good to go!

When does the tracking code send an event hit to Google Analytics? Google Analytics sends updates live, so you know when an event hit occurs as soon as a page with tracking enabled satisfies the criteria. So when does the analytics tracking code send a pageview hit to google analytics? Instantly.

Next Steps:

Add new members:

Got new members of a team? You can add new users to your Google Analytics account by going into the Admin page, then clicking Access Management in the Account/Property/View menu. Simply click add to add new members and manage their access!

Create new views:

Want many different menus displaying different data? You aren’t just stuck with one view per property. Create as many as you want by repeating the steps for creating a new view and you can create many different views that display different information!

Link Google Adsense:

If you also run Adsense on your page, linking Adsense to Google Analytics is an especially useful tool. In the Admin menu, find the property that you want to link to Google Adsense. Then, click Google Ads Linking. From there, click New Link Group, then navigate to the Google Ads account that you want to link. Turn linking ON for every page you want to link to your account, then you’re all set! Just click Link Accounts to begin receiving data from Adsense. 

Set up goals:

If there are specific metrics you want to achieve, Analytics makes that super easy with their goals system. What does assigning a value to a Google Analytics goal enable? It allows you to track your performance using metrics. What is a “metric” in Google Analytics? Goals can be defined in 4 types according to Google: destination, duration, pages per session, or event. When a user does any of these things they have met the goal, and you’ll know that a performance metric has been satisfied. Examples include a user navigating to a specific page (such as to track how many people get to the subscribe screen), or if a user stays on your page for 10 minutes. 

Frequently Asked Questions:

When will Google Analytics be unable to identify sessions from the same user by default?

When the sessions happen on the same device but in different browsers, Google Analytics will be unable to identify. Not to worry, though, this is extremely rare and isn’t a real concern for accuracy.

When linking a google ads account to Google Analytics, what is not possible?

When linking a Google Ads account to Google Analytics, the biggest missing feature is the inability to adjust keyword bids.

What feature can join offline business systems data with online data collected by Google Analytics?

Data Import. This will allow you to merge the data from your offline business systems with online data collected by Google Analytics.

What is a “dimension” in Google Analytics?

A primary dimension is the dimension set by Google at default. Dimensions allow you to view data by any grouping that Google offers.

What is a “secondary dimension” in Google Analytics?

A secondary dimension is a second dimension specified by the user in Google Analytics.

Conclusion:

Google Analytics is a tremendously powerful tool that can give you the edge by providing real time information. We hope that this guide has helped you in implementing this wonderful tool and we look forward to all the amazing things you’ll do with the help of Google Analytics!