Google Analytics as a tool is known for many good things – it has many cool features, tracks websites, mobile app , can also describe audience, traffic source etc etc, but one area where it really fails its users is its usability. It really creates a daunting task, to go past the 90 odd reports and numerous metrics to identify one that should be improved or looked into for issues. That’s where data within Google Analytics and the 95 different reports can potentially paralyze any analytical mind, not to speak of first timers.
For me too, there is not been a single day when I sit analyzing with data and wish has navigation been any easier. However what drives to go past all this and try to decipher some sort of insight from a number is really the varied ways Google Analytics measures website performance. If properly set up it can talk a lot about audience, demography, , sources of traffic , onsite behavior, navigation, landing and exit page effectiveness and finally what this all means to business.
And all this together give can give a pretty solid idea about experience visitors take away from websites and mobile apps. Not to forget, a great user experience is often step on to having a satisfied visitors who also convert .
As a heavy user of Google Analytics I have often found several starting point for further analysis. At several point data poses this question why ? and leads to further analysis. An example would make thing clearer
Speaking quantitatively one website I had a chance to work with, proudly displayed a media coverage video in the area above the fold on home page. Often marked as an important landing page the home page had numerous visitors. However only 10 percent of traffic actually scrolled below the video or viewed any of the important business information that waited there. Approx. 90% dropped off the website after watching the video. Illustrations above the fold is a great idea but not if it actually ends up driving traffic away. With this clue we initiated two modifications. 1. Replaced the video with a sliding image and added calls to actions , business info , one liners on the images . Result was not surprising – we helped visiting traffic navigate easily .But more interestingly these raised enquiry, conversions and utilize the most populous area of the website without fiddling much with the aesthetics.