How to use Google Analytics for small business?
Free Google Analytics statistics have three advantages: they have great capabilities, the only ones so easily integrate with Google Ads campaigns (an important advantage for the customers of this service) and finally…. are free of charge. However, the full use of all these features depends on the knowledge – marketing and technical – and business “feeling” of the subject.
“Free of charge means low quality’. – that’s something you can’t say about Google Analytics. The web statistics service, which – according to various studies – is installed on most websites in the world, attracts website owners and companies operating on the Internet with a few quite significant advantages. The value of Google Analytics does not lie in the fact that the system is free, relatively easy to install and intuitive to use. As in the case of any analytical tool, it is important to skillfully use and process information and conclusions coming from the collected data and then use them in business to further optimize – to improve results, profitability or achieve the assumed goals….
But let’s go one by one:
Installing Google Analytics
The phase on which the success of the whole project depends. The quality of the data collected and the trust that we “see” something that accurately reflects reality gives the comfort of further operation and analysis (and later inference). The installation of Google Analytics is not limited to simply pasting a piece of code into the source code of a website – it is often an additional element related to e.g. monitoring traffic on subdomains of the website or monitoring interactions with Flash technology objects. The process of installing Google Analytics is also characteristic because it requires knowledge on the borderline between technology (what can I do?) and marketing (what do I need?).
Google Analytics configuration
The configuration phase involves further work related to obtaining relevant data of interest to us – it includes, for example, the creation of many profiles within the account, used for further detailed analysis of data (e.g. ranking of positions in natural search results of passwords, which caused entry from the SEO channel). This stage may also include, for example, the configuration of tracking queries made in an internal search engine, or installation of an e-commerce module (especially recommended in the case of online stores). Google Analytics technology, thanks to its advanced ability to configure filters operating on properly clean data, allows to obtain many different sets of information.
Google Analytics Reports
Several dozens of default reports are additionally available in many complex configurations. Additionally, each report can be analyzed through the prism of many segments (including those defined by the user for their own needs), which means that we can properly analyze virtually any set of information (there are so many of them that tools offering predefined Google Analytics reports – the most important for a given type of business – are created on the Internet). But it shouldn’t be art for art – what about information that doesn’t bring anything to our business?
Use of Google Analytics in small business
Applications, applications, applications…. From experience I can say that the biggest problem of most business users of Google Analytics is the lack of ability to use the data obtained from this tool!
Therefore, it is an art to prepare such a (limited!) number of reports that will be used in the further process and will actually influence the decisions made, e.g. as regards the website design, form design, length of the registration process on the website or e.g. the scope of promotional activities undertaken. This process is often so complicated that companies use the services of certified Google Analytics consultants, or send employees to Google Analytics training courses to explore the most important issues.
Note: “the analytical tool is as good as the people who use it” – stick to this good principle, taking care of the high quality of each of the above mentioned phases, because making a bad business decision can cost a lot, much more than the time and money spent on a well-arranged and well thought-out process.