Website Analytics – A Beginners Guide

What is Website Analytics?

Website analytics refers to the process of collecting, analyzing and reporting on various data about website usage. This data helps website owners understand how visitors interact with their site and make informed decisions to improve the user experience. 

Some key types of data tracked by website analytics include:

Traffic sources –  Where visitors are coming from (search engines, social media, email, etc.)

Visitor behavior –  Pages visited, time on site, exit pages, scroll depth, video playback etc. 

Conversions –  When visitors complete important goals like purchases, signups or contact form submissions. 

Technical details –  Operating systems, browsers, screen resolution, connection speed and geographic location of visitors.

Website analytics is made possible through the use of tracking codes (like Google Analytics) that are installed on webpages. 

These codes collect data about visits and visitor activity in an anonymous manner without identifying individual users. The collected data is then analyzed to gain useful insights.

Why Website Analytics is Important

Improve user experience – Understanding how users interact helps optimize content, navigation and functionality based on real data.

Increase conversions – Identifying bottlenecks allows focusing efforts on optimizing goal completion funnels and driving more conversions. 

Evaluate campaigns – Measuring traffic and ROI from ads, social media, email helps determine best performing channels. 

Inform strategy – Insights from analytics provide objective data to make informed decisions about site changes, content focus and monetization strategies.

Benchmark performance – Continuously tracking KPIs allows evaluating impact of optimizations and setting benchmarks over time. 

Find new opportunities – Analytics may reveal unexpectedusage patterns or underserved audiences presenting new growth opportunities.

Overview of the Guide

  • Choose the right analytics tool for your needs from free and paid options.
  • Setup analytics tagging and configure views, filters, goals and other settings.  
  • Understand commonly analyzed metrics like sessions, pageviews, bounce rate etc.
  • Leverage location and device data to learn about your audience.
  • Analyze behavior and funnel flows to optimize user journeys.  
  • Use reports and dashboards to monitor key metric.
  • Apply insights for continuous improvement and testing change.
  • Explore some advanced analytics technique.

Choosing an Analytics Tool

Choosing an Analytics Tool

There are various options available for websites to use for analytics. The right choice depends on factors like budget, capabilities needed and complexity.

Popular Free Options

Google Analytics – The leading free analytics platform, full-featured for basic and advanced usage. Easy to use interface. Issues reports on 15+ minute delay.  

Fathom Analytics – Newer option with clean interface focused on privacy and ease of use. Good for blogs and simpler site and Good for blogs and simpler site.

Behavior Flow

Entry and Exit Pages 

The pages that send most traffic to the site and those where visitors tend to leave help identify value and areas for improvement. Focusing content better on entry pages and reducing exits can boost engagement.

Funnels and Drop-off Points

Tracking conversion funnels shows the steps and pages leading to a goal like signups, purchases etc. and where visitors tend to abandon (drop-off). Addressing drop-off points can boost conversions. For example, optimizing Web development services UK pages with low completion rates.




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