You finally have your startup’s website up and running. Now, you need to know if anyone is actually visiting your site and which pages they’re visiting most. This means that it’s time to incorporate Google Analytics (GA). Google Analytics opens doors for startups by acting as a useful, free, easy, and fast-to-implement tool. Startups can track and analyze data to understand and optimize their company websites. This blog post aims to inform you of the 4 key metrics from GA that will guide you on your path to a successful startup website.
1. Visits and Unique Visitors
Let’s start with one of the simplest metrics. Tracking visits will give you a quick sense of your overall site traffic over time. For instance, if you’ve had 30 visitors per day on average last month, but this month you’re at 300, you can drill down into this data and learn which pages are driving the most traffic and leverage this increase accordingly. With the visitor metric, it’s very important to know how many visitors are new versus how many are recurring. The ‘Visits’ and ‘Unique Visitors’ metrics on GA can satisfy this curiosity.
2. Bounce Rate
For your website to be successful, you need to know which pages are turning people away. The Bounce Rate metric on GA measures the percentage of people who visit a specific page, and then immediately leave your site. It may seem like having a high bounce rate (80%, for example) on any page would be terrible, but that’s not always the case. There are certain cases where page types lend themselves to higher bounce rates. For example, individual blog post pages generally have higher bounce rates because people are oftentimes directed there by another source—usually social media. They’ll read your post and then go back to what they were doing previously.
In other cases, however, a high bounce rate can be a sign that your webpage needs to be re-examined for the user experience. You should strive to keep your main webpages (e.g. home page, products/services page, and about page) as low of a bounce rate as possible.
If you find that these pages are pushing people away, some areas to consider reevaluating include:
3. Average Visit Duration
Aside from the number of individuals visiting your website, it’s also imperative to know how long these visitors are staying. Are most people on your site for hours, minutes, or seconds? The ‘Average Visit Duration’ metric on GA measures the average amount of time visitors spend on each of your pages. If you find that visitors are not staying on some of your pages for as long as you’d like, you should think about ways to make your site more engaging. Some ideas include:
4. Traffic Sources
This last metric, sources of traffic, shows you the top referrals for your website. This can include things like search engines, links from other websites, and social media networks. Looking at your traffic sources is especially important when you’re spending time promoting your own website. For example, let’s say you are putting 75% of your social media marketing time into LinkedIn and 25% of your time into Twitter. If you see on GA that most of your traffic is being gained through Twitter, then it could be time to switch gears and re-evaluate your best marketing channels.
Google Analytics is a robust and sophisticated tool, and there are many ways to interpret the data in order to optimize your website. These 4 metrics are just the start. If you’ve recently launched your website and you have more advanced questions regarding your site traffic, contact us for an introductory conversation.