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Google Analytics Essential Training (2010)
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Defining goals and conversions: Why do you have a web site?


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Google Analytics Essential Training (2010)

with Corey Koberg

Video: Defining goals and conversions: Why do you have a web site?

Goals are a fundamental concept of any analytics package, and without goals, you have nothing more than a fancy hit counter. Goals are what will allow us to evaluate quality traffic from poor performing traffic. In other words, in order for us to say that site A is sending you much more valuable traffic than site B, we need some criteria to base that on, and that's where goals come in. This will all become clear as we examine the anatomy of a Web site visit, and the role that analytics can play in that evaluation. The first step is to attract traffic. This is fairly obvious, and it's where the vast majority of online marketing is devoted.
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  1. 6m 2s
    1. Welcome
      1m 13s
    2. How to get the most from this course
      3m 11s
    3. What's new in this update?
      1m 38s
  2. 5m 19s
    1. The pitfalls of hit counting and turning data into information
      3m 6s
    2. Web analytics: A tool and a process
      2m 13s
  3. 15m 30s
    1. Defining goals and conversions: Why do you have a web site?
      5m 40s
    2. Understanding data: Averages, segments, trends, and context
      1m 51s
    3. Introducing segments
      2m 38s
    4. Understanding trends and context
      5m 21s
  4. 11m 25s
    1. How does Google Analytics work?
      2m 18s
    2. Setting up an account
      2m 49s
    3. Installing tracking code on a site
      6m 18s
  5. 24m 20s
    1. Understanding accounts and profile administration
      6m 59s
    2. Navigating the reports and the Data Over Time chart
      4m 45s
    3. Selecting and comparing date ranges
      6m 50s
    4. Using annotations to make notes in data
      2m 30s
    5. Using the help tools
      3m 16s
  6. 24m 20s
    1. Viewing data in different formats (overview, tabular, pie, bar, compare to site)
      6m 10s
    2. Navigating data with site usage, goals, and e-commerce metrics
      9m 20s
    3. Sorting data with inline and advanced filters
      8m 50s
  7. 10m 26s
    1. Understanding the importance of segmentation in data analysis
      4m 40s
    2. Slicing data with dimensions
      5m 46s
  8. 7m 38s
    1. Why share data?
      1m 10s
    2. Managing user accounts and profiles
      4m 8s
    3. Emailing reports
      2m 20s
  9. 29m 12s
    1. Understanding who is visiting a site
      1m 20s
    2. Analyzing location data
      4m 52s
    3. Using language identification to segment users
      1m 35s
    4. Differentiating new users from returning users
      2m 1s
    5. Understanding visitor loyalty vs. recency
      4m 25s
    6. Comparing data according to visits, visitors, and page views
      2m 10s
    7. Sorting data by browser capabilities
      3m 56s
    8. Analyzing data from mobile browsers
      2m 34s
    9. Using flow visualization to see common paths
      6m 19s
  10. 23m 50s
    1. Linking an AdWords account to Google Analytics
      2m 46s
    2. Identifying campaigns and segmentation options
      5m 55s
    3. Using keyword reports
      1m 31s
    4. Fine-tuning your match type with the Matched Search Queries report
      3m 44s
    5. Optimizing traffic by time of day
      1m 37s
    6. Using the Destination URL report to identify landing pages
      1m 45s
    7. Identifying the best placement options for ads
      2m 0s
    8. Keyword positions
      4m 32s
  11. 40m 3s
    1. Understanding where site visitors come from
      2m 32s
    2. Analyzing the All Traffic Sources report
      2m 4s
    3. Identifying direct traffic
      2m 20s
    4. Identifying users who were referred to your site
      3m 9s
    5. Viewing search engine reports (overview, organic, and paid)
      4m 52s
    6. Introducing campaign tracking
      11m 17s
    7. Planning, creating, and logging a tracking strategy
      2m 58s
    8. Tracking offline campaigns
      7m 11s
    9. Finding data in a Campaign report
      3m 40s
  12. 36m 43s
    1. Analyzing top content by metrics and the navigation summary
      3m 29s
    2. Sorting top content according to page title
      3m 57s
    3. Understanding when to use content drilldown
      2m 25s
    4. Measuring the importance of top landing and top exit pages
      3m 41s
    5. Identifying slow-performing pages with the Site Speed report
      4m 6s
    6. Understanding the Site Search and Usage report
      3m 29s
    7. Analyzing the Search Terms and Search Term Refinement reports
      4m 12s
    8. Using the Site Search Pages report to understand how users search
      5m 19s
    9. Configuring Site Search
      6m 5s
  13. 33m 49s
    1. Understanding the Goal reports
      4m 24s
    2. Configuring goals
      9m 55s
    3. Understanding funnel visualization
      9m 48s
    4. Identifying value through E-commerce reports
      4m 35s
    5. Using goal flow to find detailed insights
      5m 7s
  14. 24m 25s
    1. Real-time data for time-sensitive analysis
      4m 21s
    2. Using intelligence alerts to flag important events
      8m 59s
    3. Creating custom intelligence alerts
      5m 48s
    4. Creating and customizing dashboards
      5m 17s
  15. 43s
    1. Goodbye
      43s

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Google Analytics Essential Training (2010)
4h 53m Beginner Oct 08, 2010 Updated Dec 20, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In Google Analytics Essential Training, Corey Koberg shows how to use the Google web analytics platform to generate and evaluate information about the visitors to a web site, including data on site traffic, user behavior, and marketing effectiveness. This course covers the out-of-the-box functionality, from account creation to reporting fundamentals, and explains how to glean insights from the vast array of data available.

Topics include:
  • Setting up an account
  • Installing tracking code on a site
  • Reading the dashboard and understanding high-level metrics
  • Understanding how visitors use and navigate web site content
  • Analyzing visitor and traffic source reports
  • Tracking AdWords and other marketing campaigns
  • Planning and configuring goals
  • Utilizing segmentation for deeper analysis
  • Understanding the raw data and how it's collected
  • Selecting and comparing date ranges
  • Using flow visualization to see how visitors navigate through a site
  • Identifying slow-performing pages
  • Performing real-time analysis
  • Using annotations and other best practices
  • Configuring and analyzing internal site search
  • Determining the best report view to use
  • Navigating reports with tabs
  • Cleaning up data with inline filters
  • Sharing data and reports
Subjects:
Business Online Marketing Web Data Analysis Web Analytics SEO
Software:
Google Analytics
Author:
Corey Koberg

Defining goals and conversions: Why do you have a web site?

Goals are a fundamental concept of any analytics package, and without goals, you have nothing more than a fancy hit counter. Goals are what will allow us to evaluate quality traffic from poor performing traffic. In other words, in order for us to say that site A is sending you much more valuable traffic than site B, we need some criteria to base that on, and that's where goals come in. This will all become clear as we examine the anatomy of a Web site visit, and the role that analytics can play in that evaluation. The first step is to attract traffic. This is fairly obvious, and it's where the vast majority of online marketing is devoted.

There are many options to getting visitors to your site, some paid, like AdWords, Microsoft AdCenter, Ask.com, Facebook ads. Even low cost or free options, though, like organic search engine traffic or e-mail marketing, cost you time, effort, and resources, which are often more precious than money. We also have to consider all of the offline marketing, where we publish our Web site address in hopes that customers will pull up our site the next time they hop on the Web. There is no doubt that a lot of effort goes into getting visitors to our site, and traditionally, this is where almost all of our focus has been.

We mistakenly believe that if we get enough visitors to our site, somehow that will be good enough, but just dropping them off on the front door of our site and hoping for the best isn't good enough. We need them to actually take that next step, whether it's to put something in their shopping cart, fill out a lead gen form, download coupons, or even just find our phone number so they can pick up the phone and give us a call. And not all visits behave the same, by any stretch of imagination. There is high performing traffic, and low performing traffic, and everything in between. In order to analyze which sources and types of traffic are valuable, we need to track what those visitors are doing when they're on the site; what content works, how are they using the site, and ultimately figure out how to segment them to understand why they're doing what they're doing.

Finally, we're going to measure how many folks, and which segments of those people, reach that final step, and convert. Whether it's putting money in your bank account, or filling out that lead gen form, we get to tell our analytics package exactly what we consider a successful visit by setting goals, and calculating our conversion rate based on our goals. One very important point about goals is not to overlook intermediate goals. We're often so focused on that last step, such as a shopping cart checkout, that we forget about all the factors in between that contribute to the sale, and get them to take that next step.

Think about an actual grocery cart. Once you've filled it up, and gotten in the checkout line, the chances that you take that next step and pay are very good, because you've taken all the previous steps that lead up to that point. We have equivalents online, and so when we're doing our Web analytics analysis, tracking these intermediate steps and funnels is very valuable. Determining our primary and secondary goals is critically important, but not difficult. We simply ask ourselves, why do you have a Web site? What is the purpose of your site, and what do you want them to do when they visit? If you have an e-commerce site, then your primary goal is simple: you want people to check out with your shopping cart, and put money in your pocket. Simple enough, but don't forget about intermediate or secondary goals as well.

But the reality is, most businesses are not e-commerce companies, where they accept credit cards over the Web. This doesn't mean you don't have goals. Many Web sites are designed to generate business leads. If you have a contact or lead gen form on your site, that is a perfect goal, and a fantastic way to determine good traffic from bad. Mailing lists are another great example; one where we can easily put a value on each goal conversion. For example, if you know that you average $500 in sales for every 1000 people on your weekly e-mail newsletter, you can easily calculate how much each additional signup is worth.

E-mail marketing lends itself very well to tracking via analytics, in both getting people to sign up for your list, as well as tracking the success of the visits generated from sending out those mails. Now, perhaps your goals to get the phone to ring. There are many ways to track both the number of visits that reach that Contact Us info page, but also ways to integrate your analytics with tracking the ringing of your actual phone system. Or perhaps you know that getting the results of an industry study in the hands of prospective clients is likely to influence them.

Well then tracking the downloads of that study or white paper is a great intermediate or soft goal. Maybe you're a publisher, and your goal is to get folks to click on ads or affiliate links; we can do that too. Now, this one is interesting, because it's often the opposite of the previous goal. If you just launched a new tech support knowledgebase, it's very likely you're trying to shift calls away from your expensive call center, towards the online knowledgebase. So you certainly want to measure that goal, and perhaps even measure contact requests as a negative goal. Don't forget about other areas of your business and Web site.

For example, many of us have a career section on our site. We know hiring can be a costly and arduous process, so many times we can even associate a value with resume submission. If we know that it generally takes X amount of resumes to find the right candidate, then we can put a value on each resume submission or job application that we receive through the site, and we can evaluate which job board sites are sending us quality traffic by tracking and measuring the application process on our site. So as you can see, there's no shortage of goals that we can track on our site.

These goals are fundamental to our ability to gain insights and perform analysis. Later chapters, we'll discuss how to implement goals. For now, we want to be thinking in the back of your mind why you have a site, and what goals you're going to track.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Google Analytics Essential Training (2010).


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Q: The course was updated on 12/19/11. Can you tell me what's changed?
A: Many movies were updated to reflect the changes in the Google Analytics user interface and new movies were added to the course as well, with topics including using flow visualization to see common paths, identifying slow-performing pages with the Site Speed Report, using goal flow to find detailed insights on funnels and conversion paths, analyzing real-time data for time-sensitive analysis, and fine-tuning match types with the Matched Search Queries report.
Q: Where can I learn more about internet marketing?
A: Discover more on this topic by visiting internet marketing on lynda.com.
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