If you want to get the most out of your Internet marketing activities, Google analytics is an essential tool that helps you evaluate your website traffic as well as leads from other advertising sources.
In the old days, people would evaluate website effectiveness based on “hits”. All this meant, however, was the amount of times your images and page items loaded. So, a page with more images would have more “hits” than another one. This was never a very effective data point for measuring traffic. Visitors, especially unique visitors, have always been a better metric to gauge effectiveness.
Now, people can install Google analytics (a free tool) to each website page and you can find out visitors, unique visitors, where they came from, how long they stayed, what content is the most popular, and a whole host of information. For this reason, MTECH installs Google analytics on every web project we do as well as provide web reports for clients.
One key indicator that Google analytics tracks is your bounce rate. A bounce occurs when a user visits a website and immediately exits the page from which they came without having moved to another page on the same website.
A higher bounce rate means users leave your website without viewing any additional pages. A lower bounce rate means users stay on your website and have moved to a different page within your website. Sometimes sites have links to other company websites or shopping carts, which could account for a higher bounce rate. However, it could also indicate that people are not being engaged by your page.
Most companies should aim for a low bounce rate (50% or less) and focus on increasing the average time the visitor spends on the site. Compare pages and determine why one page may be performing poorly and why one page may be performing well. How was the quality of writing? Navigation issues? Keyword selection? Ads on the page? Length of the article? Also, evaluate how long a person is staying on a page. If the page has a high bounce rate and a short time on site, then something may need to be adjusted.
Here are some strategies that may also help:
- Update your website with quality content frequently
- Try out features important to your audience
- Create interactivity (i.e., two-way flow of information between you and your audience)
- Give your audience a reason to stick around
- Routinely check your links to ensure they are working properly
- Continue driving traffic to your website via quality articles, social media, etc.