Beginner’s Guide to Understanding Google Analytics

Teaching Google AnalyticsIf there’s one thing we’ve learned from all of the website redesign projects we’ve done, it’s that most companies have Google Analytics running on their website – but very few take time to actually look at the data and figure out what it means.

Google Analytics provides a wealth of insight that can help you determine how much traffic your website generates, how people find your site, what pages they visit, and loads of other information about what’s working and what’s not.

But here’s what I think is the challenge for most people … there’s so much data available, it’s overwhelming. Most casual marketers (i.e. business owners that sometimes throw on their marketing hat) don’t know where to start or even how to interpret the data.

So we put together this beginner’s guide to Google Analytics to help you get a basic understanding of the reports, how to interpret the data, and start making informed decisions about your website and online marketing strategy.

And by the way, if you you’re using WordPress, here are step-by-step instructions for adding the Google Analytics tracking code to your website.

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How to Exclude Your Own Visits in Google Analytics Reports

As many of you already know, Google Analytics is a powerful tool that provides your business with valuable insight regarding website performance. Google Analytics tracks everything from where visitors are coming from and how long they stay on your website, to which pages they visited and for how long.

However, by default Google tracks information on every visitor to your website – including you and your employees.  So in order to get the most accurate representation of your website’s performance and avoid “skewing” the data with your own internal visits/traffic, we recommend that you set up filters to exclude any internal visitors. Here’s how it works.

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