5 Reports in Google Analytics You Need To Start Using

Google-Analytics-logo-2013

If you’ve had a website built recently you should be able to request Google Analytics to be installed and you given access to for free or a relatively cheap price. It literally takes 15-30 minutes for a developer to set up, depending on if he takes a break 10 minutes in to eat a doughnut or not.

Google Analytics is your command central for your website. You can tell where people found your website, what they searched to find your website, the pages they visited on your website, and a whole lot more. Below are 5 of the first reports I started using. Please ask if you have questions!

1. Traffic Sources Report

All traffic report in Google Analytics

Why is it important?

If you know where you traffic is coming from you’ll have a great idea of how people are using your website. A lot of referral traffic? People are finding your website on other places on the internet, this is a good sign.¬† A lot of Search Engine traffic? This means Google’s finding your website and likes it. A lot of direct traffic? People must like what they’re finding on your website if they keep coming back again and again.

You can also tell which traffic is your most valuable based on pages per visit, time on site, bounce rate and exit rate.

How do I find the traffic sources report?

From the home screen click Traffic Sources:

Click traffic sources

Click all traffic

click-all-traffic-Google-Analytics

2. Organic Search Traffic Report

Organic search keyword report-google analytics

Why is it important?

This report tells you all the different keyword phrases people are searching in Google to find your website. If your organization does a lot of offline advertising (TV, Radio, Newspaper, Direct mail) you should find a lot of searches with your brand name in them. This report will tell you if your company is being actively searched.

All the keyword searches that don’t include your brand/company name is traffic that could have gone to another website. This is very valuable traffic. Unbranded search engine results are some of the best traffic you can get. The long-tail nature of search helps a lot in this manner.

How do I find the organic search traffic report?

From Traffic Sources, click Sources, then Search, then click Organic.

how to get to the organic traffic report

3. Top Pages Report

Top pages report - Google Analytics

Why is this important?

You should know what pages on your website are acquiring the most page views. Starting with the top ten ask yourself why are these the most viewed pages on my website? Is it something you said? Are you getting lots of organic Google traffic to those pages or is it something else? Is there anything you can learn from those top pages? What did Google or people love about those pages? Can you recreate the most popular aspects of those pages?

How do I find the top pages report?

Click Content then Site Content then click All pages.

How to run in-page click thru report-google analytics

4. The In-Page Click Thru Report

In-page report-home page-google analytics

Why is this important?

You can see actual data on where people are clicking on your website pages, any page. Find the hot spots where people click the most and get rid of links/pages that know one is clicking. You will finally know what people click on on your home page, about page, the contact us page. No need to argue with someone about what people are doing on your website, instead why not use the in-page report.

How do I find the in-page click thru report?

Click Content then Site Content then click All pages.

How to run in-page click thru report-google analytics

Then select whichever page you wish to see.

Select which page you want to see-google analytics

Once you’re on a specific page change the report to In-Page.

Change to in-page report

5. Visitor Flow Report

Visitor flow - Google Analytics

Why is this important?

If you change the control that’s set to ‘country of origin’ of traffic flowing through your website, to a more helpful variable it becomes remarkably more useful. I use Source / Medium so you can tell where the bulk of your traffic comes from and what sources you may have thought were great, over time the data won’t lie.

There aren’t a lot of decisions you’re going to make based upon this report along. The visitor flow report seems to be more of an interesting infographic telling the hidden story of the life of your website. The further back in time you can go the better.

How do I find the visitor flow report?

Click Audience then Visitor Flow. (Bonus points if you change Country / Territory to Source / Medium)

How to find visitor flow in Google Analytics

Do you have a report you always use? Please share in the comments below. As always ask any questions that you may have burning inside you.