A common mistake made by most business owners is being too intimidated to use Google Analytics because they believe it is too complicated to use. Don’t be scared!
Learning the system is ‘surprisingly’ easy and user-friendly and easier to set up than you think.
Once you are good to go, Google Analytics provides information that is chock-full of value when it comes to your online presence and website performance.
There are, however, some common mistakes you will want to avoid before starting. We’ve compiled a helpful checklist to help you avoid some common Google Analytics tracking mistakes.
This will help you gather the data you need to know more information about your customers online and help pack a punch in your marketing strategy.
1. Not Reviewing Google Analytics
This is not a requirement everyday but it is a good idea to keep track of how your metrics are doing every other day or a few times a week.
Metrics and numbers change quickly, so it’s important to stay on top of your metrics and the changes that are happening in the data.
This will allow you to make decisions based on accurate and current information. You will want to keep a spreadsheet to track all of the changes and information, making your monthly analysis a breeze.
2. Forgetting the Code on Every Page
When you begin tracking with Google Analytics, you will want to add your tracking code to every page of your website.
Once you’ve implemented the code to every page of your site you will want to check that it works correctly.
This seems like common sense but is easily skipped over and forgotten often.
3. Excluding Internal Traffic
Anyone who has access to your website and visits it regularly is still being tracked by Google Analytic metrics and counted as organic traffic.
In order to track and record accurate data you will want to add a filter to your site that sorts through any employees, developers, marketing managers that visit your site frequently.
This will ensure that your data is accurate and not over inflated.
It is a pretty straightforward process:
- Go to the Admin tab of your profile, and click on “Filters,”
- Click the red “New Filter” button, and name your new filter (example, Exclude Internal Traffic)
- Use a predefined filter to “Exclude” “traffic from the IP addresses”
- Add your IP Address (to find out, just google “what’s my ip address)
- Hit add, and you are done!
4. Avoiding Goal, Event or Ecommerce Tracking
Goal tracking measures how well your site fulfills your target objectives. Some examples of this are knowing how many people complete a purchase on your website, completing a newsletter sign up form, or scheduling an appointment online.
Having these attributes properly set up will provide you with information such as screen time, user destinations, user durations, page screens per session, and specific events that are generated by your needs.
This information will help users navigate whether or not their ads and funnels are working and are very helpful in informing your future marketing goals.
If you want to know more about the importance of goals and how to set them up for your website, click here!
5. Not Using Bot Filters
By simply checking a box Google can filter out spam/bots visiting your website. Go to admin > view settings and select the “exclude all hits from known bots and spiders” to clean up your data.
6. Misplaced Code
The hardcoded code should be placed right before the closing head tag and Google Tag Manager should be placed right after the opening body tag.
7. Ignoring Mobile Metrics
On a mobile-first world, where Google is evaluating how well your site functions on mobile before desktop, ensuring that our sites are optimized for mobile is standard practice in 2021.
If you are only looking at information about how people are interacting with your desktop site, you are missing a lot of information about how people navigate your site differently on mobile.
This can provide you with improvements that could provide major benefits to your business.
8. Not Tracking Email or Micro Conversions
Google Analytics are especially helpful when you have the proper macro and micro conversions in place. Many micro conversions such as PDF clicking and video playing can be tracked via event tracking. The best and easiest way to set this up is through Google Tag Manager.
9. Not Connecting Google Analytics to Other Services
Like every good team, Google Analytics will work well on it’s own, but works even better with other services. Google AdSense, Webmaster Tools and GoogleAdwords all provide additional information about your SEM efforts and the health and accessibility of your website.
10. Overlooking Dashboard Customizations
Every website will have various business goals and objectives. It’s important to set up customized dashboards based on your unique business strategies and tactics.
This list goes through common Google Analytics mistakes you will want to avoid when setting up your Google Analytics account.
Although there is a wealth of information you can collect not all metrics are created equal. Being able to point out these metrics is vital when making strategic decisions.
If your website is not performing as well as you hoped or your analytics are not reaching your marketing goals get in touch with us and we’d be happy to help!