Google Analytics is a fantastic tool for understanding your audience, tracking visitor behavior, and making improvements. It can help your business in many ways, but not all.
Things You Can Do with Google Analytics
1. Real-time Site Traffic Monitoring
Google Analytics not only shows who has visited your site previously, but also how many people are currently viewing it. Visit the Real-Time report to see how visitors interact with your content.
2. Tell You What Your Site’s Visitors Want
If your website has a search function, Google Analytics’ Site Search feature will show you what terms visitors are using and whether they are finding what they want.
3. Test Your Mobile Site Requirements
Otherwise, the Mobile section of the Audience report will tell you what devices your visitors are using and what percentage of your audience is using a smartphone or tablet.
4. Show Your Site Visitors
While the Audience report does not reveal who is visiting your site, it does reveal their age, gender, interests, occupation, and location. This data can be used to target them with email or online advertising, and to tailor your content to their interests.
5. Let You Track Your Site’s Usage
Google’s Users Flow report shows you how visitors move through your site, including which pages they visit first, how many return later, and which pages they skip.
6. Show You What Your Visitors Click
To know where to place key calls to action and which pages may need updating to increase engagement, use Google’s In-Page Analytics tool.
7. Rank Your Content
Select Site Content then All Pages in Google Analytics’ Behavior section to see a ranking of all site pages. You can sort the list by page views, average time spent on the page, and more.
What Google Analytics Can’t Do
1. Tracking of Individual Users
Google Analytics can tell you a lot about your site visitors, but not who they are. We know their age, location and other details but not their name, IP address or any other personally identifiable information.
2. Get Historical Site Use Data
There is no way to see data from before Google Analytics was installed, so you can’t see traffic and other information from before Google Analytics was installed.
3. See What Your Site Visitors Do Elsewhere Online
You can track what your visitors do on your site, such as what pages they visit, how long they stay, what buttons they click, but not what they do once they leave.
4. Tracking of Users That Don’t Want to Be Tracked