From speeding up your site for improved conversions, to forming a deep understanding of your sales funnel, today’s tracking technology is moving beyond its traditional function and can offer insightful qualitative analysis. If your site is not using Google Analytics you are losing out on invaluable data from the king of analytics platforms (and it’s free too!)

Managed by the world’s largest search engine, it provides you with detailed, day-by-day analysis of how users are interacting with your website. Tools like Google Analytics are incredibly powerful when it comes to measuring the engagement and effectiveness of your site and they can answer many questions when it comes to learning about your visitors — like why they aren’t spending money on your site.

Here’s the best tips on how you can use Google Analytics to gather valuable insights and create an actionable plan to improve conversions.

1. Find the best pages for conversions

Did you know Google Analytics has an entire section on website conversions? One of the first actionable reports you should analyze is page performance in terms of number of conversions. You can run the report for any channel to identify the best converting pages by source to get better insights. To do this, analyzes individual page performance during a certain date range compared monthly or yearly for organic sessions. This will give you the most holistic idea of conversions from your highest traffic source (at least for the majority of website organic traffic is the boss).

Analyzing the individual page performance in with the organic segment can shed some insight on page authority for all pages or just a couple pages on a website. Once you have the report in the correct date range and filtered by an organic segment, you can see what pages are contributing to conversions. By comparing the date ranges, you can generally see changes in which you should identify any negatively performing pages.

After analyzing what pages are contributing to a loss of conversions an action plan should be created to fix the issues that may be causing the decrease. If it is only one page that is contributing to a large loss of conversions then a quick assessment can be made at the page level. If most pages are decreasing in performance then you might have some technical SEO issues.

Bonus: It’s also useful to segment this report by New Users, as well as Return Users to compare.

2. Mobile is different than desktop

Most people check their general Audience reports to see the percentages of mobile, desktop, and laptop users. A much more effective strategy is to analyze how mobile users interact with your website. There are a lot of engagement metrics to focus on, but the first one you should investigate is bounce rate on mobile devices. Add mobile and tablet traffic as a segment to any report to unveil this information.

Once again, you can view the number of conversions via mobile as that is always a good metric to track. Viewing the mobile bounce rate by itself doesn’t provide too much context. Of course, you can view the mobile pages that contain the highest bounce rate and analyze each page to see what you should do to lower the bounce rate. Or, you can compare the mobile bounce rate with the desktop bounce rate of a particular page. Another good metric to analyze is exit rate percentage, time on page, and average pages per visit. These comparisons will help you understand how different the mobile experience may be for users and what needs to do done to make the experience better for either the mobile or desktop version.

3. Get your own site search data

One of the secret tools no one ever talks about is Google Analytic’s ability to show you what people are entering into the search bar of your site. To access this report, you will need to setup the functionality first. Once setup, Google Analytics will track the search terms that people use on a website’s internal search tool. It provides some invaluable information because it will show you exactly how many times the site search tool was used, what terms people search for, and the page they search on.

The search terms report will provide a list of keywords that people used on your website. There are many ways you can utilize this information, but one way is to create additional content on the most searched terms. Adding more content based off of what people are searching will provide your audience with the content they want.

Use the site terms report to help structure a website for your audience. It may make sense to add or remove pages from a navigational menu if there are commonalities to the search terms.

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