• Define Your Google Analytics Data


Today is a great day – you’ve launched your latest website. However, whether you know it or not, the process is just beginning. Now, install Google Analytics.

A free platform from to use and install on your website, Google Analytics gives you and your team visibility and insight into 1) what is working on your website and 2) what is not.

The performance of your digital marketing does not start and stop on lead generation and incoming phone calls. You need to understand both the data available via Google Analytics and how it is to be interpreted.

This information is crucial for your digital success; maintaining a successful web presence comes down to interpreting and acting on this data.

Understand Your Audience

Analytics helps you examine the visitor traffic to your website: who they are, where they are, and what (device) they are on. Google Analytics allows users to segment data by geographic location, demographic information, and device used to view your website.

However, none of this information matters unless you understand what data to look at. In order to do that, you can use the following list as a place to start:

  • SESSIONS: total number of active visits to your website
  • USERS: individuals that visited the site (please note, users can have multiple sessions)
  • PAGEVIEWS: total number of pages visited (home, services, and contact would be 3 pageviews)
  • PAGES/SESSION: the calculated average of total pages viewed per session
  • AVG. SESSION DURATION: the calculated average length of time a user in on-site
  • BOUNCE RATE: the percentage of users who exited the site on the same page they arrived on

Are mobile users bouncing at a higher rate than desktop? Re-evaluate the mobile site design. Do pages/session seem low? Strengthen your call to action. Do you have low session duration in key cities/geo-locations? Localize your website’s meta data. Total users number’s low? Introduce some new marketing channels into your digital strategy.

Follow Your Customers’ Path

Understanding where you acquire new site visitors is just as critical as who your site visitors are. Track and analyze the channels people are using to reach your website and optimize your web presence accordingly.

What are the acquisition channels reported in Google Analytics? Channels are the most common and most frequent sources of web traffic; they are the methods by which people arrive at your website (how you acquire site traffic) and can be defined as follows:

  • DIRECT: typing in your website directly (www.thrivehive.com)
  • ORGANIC: typing a keyword phrase into a search engine and selecting your website from the results
  • REFERRAL: clicking a link to your website from another website (i.e. featured in a news article)
  • EMAIL: clicking through a direct email
  • PAID SEARCH: clicking through a PPC ad (Google AdWords, Bing/Yahoo)
  • SOCIAL: clicking through a post on Facebook, Twitter, or any other social network

Contrast the website activity per channel to see what brings in the most qualified, high-converting traffic.

Are you receiving a lot of referral traffic? From where? Continue – or bolster – that relationship. Does the bounce rate seem high on the paid search channel? Tweak your ad copy or optimize your SEM campaign. Is there a lack of social traffic? Get more active on Facebook or incorporate a social ad campaign.

Figure out where you get your traffic so you can tailor high-performing campaigns and improve the visitor experience onsite.

Keep It Going

The most important takeaway from Google Analytics is that the data is ongoing. As long as it is incorporated correctly on your website, the data continually and consistently rolls in real-time. Check daily. Check monthly. Check yearly. Do year-over-year and quarter-over-quarter analyses. Monitor and measure campaigns and traffic referrals over time (and adapt your strategies based on the results!) to ensure success.

To be an effective digital marketer is to be a data-driven marketer. Learn what your web visitors are looking for, where they are looking for it, and how they interact with your website – then tailor your web activities accordingly.

ThriveHive combines easy-to-use tools and expert guidance to help businesses stand out and get found online. Learn more about our guided marketing and advertising solutions here.

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