We cannot stress enough the importance of data to any marketing initiative. The more data you have the more you understand where your efforts succeeded and failed and you have amazing data to build your future strategies on what you know instead of just shooting from the hip. We're going to assume that you already have Google Analytics installed on your website, which is good, but now you have the power to know more. It's now time for anyone with a website to get started with Google Universal Analytics and Google Tag Manager.
Google Universal Analytics
There are many things that I can talk about in regards to Google Universal Analytics, which is now officially out beta. Many of the things I could talk about are probably too techie and would lose your attention quickly, so I'm going to tell you what you want to know as a website owner.
Collect Demographic and Interest Information
This was actually released before Google Analytics, but because it required changes to code most website owners probably ignored this. Google Universal Analytics now supports the ability for you to collect this information, so while you getting your analytics code updated anyways, let's not forget this part (it takes only slight modification to the tracking script - unless you're using Google Tag Manager). Offline you may have some idea of the age, gender, interests, etc. about your target demographic, with this update you'll be able to see if your website traffic matches that. And If you don't know much about your target market, you'll now have a better understanding by seeing the types of people engaging with your website.
This data can be huge as it can be used in cross-channel marketing and allow you to better define your overall digital marketing strategy. If you can see in the data that the people converting on your website are females between the ages of 35-55 and are interested in sports, you now know who to create those ads and landing pages for. If you see that you are missing the boat with the 55+ generation, what can you do to better capture their attention? The more tailored your marketing efforts are to your actual buyer, the more successful they will be.
The bottom line is that this information can be powerful and you need to start capturing it!
Multiple Device Tracking
Would you like to understand how your visitors are interacting with your website across multiple devices? Now you can. With the User ID feature in Google Analytics you can see that a visitor viewed your site on a desktop, then switched to mobile and how they interacted between the two. Additionally you'll be able to better understand the signed-in user experience vs. someone not signed in. Because people now own many smart devices and often switch between them, this data is important and will become even more vital as the growth in mobile continues. In the past, these visitors would have shown up separately in Google Analytics even though they would have been the same person.
More Configuration Options
This will be a big benefit to some website owners, while not really affecting others significantly.With this feature you'll be able to add new search engines that Google Analytics might not currently register as organic search traffic. Add search term exclusions which would allow you to count searches such as yourdomain.com as direct navigation instead of a search visit. Add referral exclusions which might include something like a 3rd party ecommerce platform showing as a referral to your site when you actually consider it part of your site.
Would you like to get upgraded to Google Universal Analytics? Send us an email today.
Google Tag Manager
This is not brand new, but my guess is you probably aren't already using it. So what does it do and why do you need it? Simply put: better tracking without requiring adjustments to the code. Most things Google Tag Manager gives you the ability to track have been available for a long time, but required actually touching the HTML...meaning it was probably never done. By using Google Tag Manager you can easily track actions that are occurring on your site such as button clicks to pdfs, video watches (even partial video watches), when individuals fill out form fields, ecommerce sales on your website, AdWords conversion tracking...I could keep going, but let's just say it's pretty powerful and can take your analytics and reporting to the next level without requiring a ton of custom coding!
Yes, you need this. Installation will be easier on some websites than others, but it is possible on every website. Ready to get rolling with Google Tag Manager? You know the drill...contact us today!