Google Analytics Tricks & Tips in 2020

Google Analytics can be a wealth of knowledge that can help you monitor and improve your website drastically. However, it can be difficult to know what to look for with so many options and dashboards available on the platform without knowing some Google Analytics tricks.

One of the best ways to get to know the ins and outs of Google Analytics is to experiment. Take a peek around! It can be super fun and rewarding. 

If you’re looking for some quick Google Analytics tricks to get you started, or to add to your current metrics observations, you’ve come to the right place!

In this article we’ll talk about:

  • Why Google analytics is important to have on your website
  • 8 Google Analytics Tricks
  • Key Takeaways for Google Analytics Tricks 

Why Google Analytics is Important

Google Analytics is a very useful tool for your business and comes highly recommended for anyone with a website. It allows you to monitor everything that goes on your site, including a look inside traffic and traffic sources, user behaviour and engagement on your site. The metrics can even give you a look inside your audience and whether you are reaching the people you are intending to reach. 

Google Analytics can offer you a wealth of information and help you to learn more about your audience and the effectiveness of your website. As a result, it can help you make improvements to your site in order to increase conversion rates and sales and can even help you improve your SEO rankings.

Google Analytics Tricks

1. Learn more about conversions on your site

Google Analytics allows you to look at the path that users take before making a conversion on your site. This is useful because it helps you better understand what your audience needs from you in order to take an action that you hope they will. 

In order to see the top conversion paths on your site, first log in to your Google Analytics then click Conversion > Multi-Channel Funnels > Top Conversion Paths. This will show you your top conversion paths.

For example, you may see something like Direct x2 or Organic Search > Direct. What this shows is the path that users took to eventually get to a conversion.

Direct x2 means that users came directly to your website twice before there was a conversion.

Likewise, Organic Search > Direct means that users found your site organically, then visited a second time by coming directly to your site and then a conversion was made.

This insight into user behaviour can help you develop better digital media campaigns and show you what areas to focus on on your website.

2. Examine historical traffic data

While it is undoubtedly useful to examine your most recent traffic, it can also be very insightful to compare traffic trends in the past. 

To compare traffic trends, select Audience > Overview, then click on the date range in the upper right corner. Select the date range you would like to see and then click the Compare To option below the range. From the drop down on the right of the Compare to option, select Custom and enter the dates you would like to compare to.

Doing so can show you how your traffic has changed over time and can even reveal patterns that occur – such as slower months or months with more traffic. Using this data, you can make adjustments to your website, content strategy and other digital media strategies to address concerns and make improvements.

Doing so can also help you see if adjustments you have made in the past have made a difference on your site. Compare old traffic to new over the same time period to look for any positive changes.

3. Reveal your most important keywords

For google analytics tricks, you’re missing out if you aren’t incorporating active keyword research into your strategy. Have you ever wondered how search engine users actually find your website? Well, Google Analytics lets you see the search terms that are used to get to your website!

To see the search terms users use to get to your site, click Acquisition > Search Console > Queries. 

Here you’ll see all the search queries that were used to get to your site, as well as the average ranking your site has for that query and how many people have clicked through to your site using that term, in addition to other information.

By analyzing these keywords you can get some insight into how your SEO strategy is working, gather ideas of where to expand your content and look into any terms that don’t seem to fit with your intended content topics.

4. Examine the flow of traffic on your site

You can check out how visitors to your site make their way around and even where they eventually end up leaving! 

To do so, check out the Visitors Flow insights by selecting Audience > Users Flow. Here you’ll be able to see the page on which the user entered your site and the subsequent pages they visited afterwards. The red drop-off lines show where viewers have left your site.

This data is very valuable because you are able to see how people are navigating your website and pinpoint pages where many visitors leave. This can help you to redesign your navigation, duplicate it where successful and focus on improving pages that have high drop-off rates.

5. Look at your backlinks
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Google Analytics can show you where backlinks to your site are coming from.

To see this data, go to Acquisition > All Traffic > Referrals.

Here you can see the source of a link, as well as other details including how many people have visited your site from that link and the bounce rate for those visitors. 

This information is beneficial because it can help you discover your most valuable backlinks, giving you an idea of where its best to build more! Where possible, you may be able to build more links on valuable websites on your own or reach out to a popular referrer about links on their site. 

Examining these backlinks may also help suggest the best kinds of sites to target for a link building campaign.

6. Check on your site speed

The speed at which your website loads can make or break its success. If your pages take too long to load visitors may leave your site and slow loading times can negatively impact your SEO. 

In Google Analytics, navigate to Behavior > Site Speed > Page Timings. 

Here you will be able to examine the average page load times for the various pages on your site. This information can help you determine where you may need to make improvements to your site in order to decrease loading times. 

Addressing slow loading pages will help to improve user experience and ultimately positively impact SEO.

7. Address Bounce Rates
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You can greatly improve your website by paying close attention to user behavior. Looking into bounce rates on your site will show you which pages need to be looked at and improved in order to keep visitors on your site. 

You can take a look at the bounce rates for each page on your website by navigating to Behavior > Site Content > Exit Pages in Google Analytics. If you notice a page with a very high exit rate there is an issue with that page. 

Try to discover why people are leaving that page and what you can adjust or change to address that. Consider adding a call to action or updating the content on the page to make it more captivating.

8. See Who’s on Your Site in Real-Time!

Have you ever wondered what was happening on your website at a given moment? Well, no need to wonder any longer! 

By navigating to Real Time > Overview, Google Analytics will show you who’s on your site – in real-time! 

From this report you can see how many people are currently on your site, what pages they are visiting, the keywords they’ve used to get to your site, their location, as well as other details. This can help you learn a lot about your audience and their behavior – are there certain pages that viewers are looking at during a certain time of the day or night? 

Use this info to tweak your site, make improvements or build on what is working well!

Key Takeaways for Google Analytics Tricks

As you can see, Google Analytics provides a treasure trove of valuable information about your website – showing you what is working well and what isn’t. Addressing issues and replicating successful page structures can greatly benefit your website.

Here are 8 Google Analytics Tricks that can help you reveal valuable information about your website:

  1. Check out Top Conversion Paths to learn more about how conversions are made on your website.
  2. Take a look at your historical traffic data to see traffic trends over time.
  3. Examine the Queries report to see your most valuable keywords.
  4. Look at the Users Flow to see how traffic flows through your site.
  5. Examine your backlinks to see what websites have a link to your page and where most of your traffic comes from.
  6. Look into page loading speeds to help you improve the speed of your site.
  7. Take a look at the Exit Pages on your site to see where people are leaving.
  8. Check out real-time analytics to see who is on your website at any given time.

In addition to these helpful tips, take some time to explore the reports offered for yourself – you never know what you’ll come across!

Written By Terry Say

Terry's an editor and SEO strategist for Advesa. There’s nothing content and SEO he won’t get involved in. We tried, he just always finds a way to put his hands on things! Aside from work, Terry calls himself a ‘stand-up comedy connoisseur’, and enjoys watching intense tournaments in the world of E-sports.