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Google Analytics Essential Training (2010)

Using the Site Search Pages report to understand how users search


From:

Google Analytics Essential Training (2010)

with Corey Koberg

Video: Using the Site Search Pages report to understand how users search

The Site Search Pages report can help us understand how our visitors are using our Site Search tool to find content on our site. It can help us identify pages that are confusing, vague, or otherwise frustrating to users, because one of the most important things we need to know when evaluating a particular search is where was the person on our site when they performed that search, and what were they seeing at the time? After all, as site owner performing analysis on my own site, if the visitor is at Cardinal Paths Adwords management page and they type in an internal search for Google Analytics Consultant, that's okay.
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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

Using the Site Search Pages report to understand how users search

The Site Search Pages report can help us understand how our visitors are using our Site Search tool to find content on our site. It can help us identify pages that are confusing, vague, or otherwise frustrating to users, because one of the most important things we need to know when evaluating a particular search is where was the person on our site when they performed that search, and what were they seeing at the time? After all, as site owner performing analysis on my own site, if the visitor is at Cardinal Paths Adwords management page and they type in an internal search for Google Analytics Consultant, that's okay.

You want them to move from one section of the site to the other. But if they're already are on our Google Analytics Consulting page, and then they type in Google Analytics Consulting in the internal search box, well, then I have a big problem. So for good reason, the Start Page location is the default dimension for this Site Search Pages report, as this view shows us where our visitors are beginning those searches. Let's take a look at an example from the Google Store here. Let's say we're doing analysis on the page that hosts merchandise related to Google apps. This down here is the page that I'm interested in, with a somewhat cryptic file name.

In this case this it is our main category page, Google apps. We see that there are over 9700 unique searches started from that page. We'll click down to drill down on that page of interest, and because of some oddities of the way that our web site's database works, we have some erroneous data in here. And this isn't common, but it's not uncommon either. So if you see this in yours, it's easy enough to correct via an advanced filter. In our case I'm going to apply a regular expression that will remove those digits that starts with 10. I am going to exclude this, start with 10, and removes anything there after.

We apply that and then now one rises to the top. This one I want to pay attention to, Google Apps Bumper Stickers. We see that a lot of people who are on this page were searching not just for Google apps items, but one in particular, the Google Apps Bumper Stickers. So there is a clear action we can take away from this analytics. People on this page who feel they need to begin a search are overwhelmingly looking for this product. So we need to update that page to make sure that these bumper stickers are clear and center in the front, or if we don't currently offer them, we probably should, and feature them here. The opposite of the Search Start Page is the Search Destination Page report, which rather than showing us which pages they started the search on, these will show us which pages did they go to after the search.

This report shows us not just what pages are showing up in our internal results, but which of those pages are ultimately selected by the user from the search results. It can be accessed by clicking here on the original Site Search Pages report and then selecting the middle bar here to Destination Page. Determining the destination pages can be important in showing the relevant results or showing up for the keywords that visitors are typing in. Now one thing that jumps out to me here right away is this one labeled exit. 152,000 people searched, weren't happy with the results, and left my site.

So let's take a look at what caused that. We can drill down in here to that particular page, which isn't actually a page; it's the exit. What we're going to get is a list of all the terms here that caused people to do a search and become dissatisfied with the results enough to leave the page at that point; in fact, they left my entire site that point. So we get a list of all the terms here that caused people to do a search and become dissatisfied with the results enough to leave the page and the entire site at that point. And there's a lot of action we can take from this page. If these are items that we don't sell, well maybe we should consider selling them.

Worse yet, if these are items that we do sell, we need to understand why people weren't clicking into these results. Were the results not presenting the proper page? Was it not clear to the user that this page had those results? Whatever the case in your site, you can use this report as the glue to connect the dots from what the user did to the structure of your actual site and how you can fix it. Another way to come at this is from the keyword side. Instead of looking at a destination page and then seeing the keywords, we can look at a particular keyword and see which destination page people chose from that.

So I can come back here to the Search Terms report and look at the different keywords that people were searching on. I want to select one of these keywords that people searched on, let's just say in this case android. I'm going to apply another filter here to remove some of these erroneous search pages and my list will become much cleaner. I'm going to get rid of those that are actual search pages so I can see which ones actually got clicked on. Now I see that a fair amount of people exited, but I'm interested in these next two here.

In fact, I'm curious about this one down here, the Android+Restroom+Sign. So I'm going to copy that URL and come up here and see what that page is all about. This is the Android Restroom Sign T-Shirt. Given that this is the second-most popular page after the original one, now if I go back here to the list, I'll see that this was the second-most popular result after the main android page. So if I go to the main Android T-Shirt and look what that says-- let's take a look at that.

One thing I noticed here is that the most popular result for a specific T-shirt is not even featured here on the main T-shirt page. We can surmise that we might find success by moving it here, given its popularity as a search result destination page. As you can see, there's a ton of insight to beginning from the Start and Destination Pages report if we take the time to really analyze them.

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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