Google Analytics Metrics You Should Be Monitoring

September 13, 2013


Google Analytics is a service offered by Google that generates detailed statistics about a website's traffic and traffic sources and measures conversions and sales. The reports below cover the most important metrics, but I encourage you to explore Google Analytics on your own.

Demographics > Location

This report lets you see where visits originate (Continent, Sub Continent, Country, City). For web visitors, Location is derived from mapping IP addresses to geographic locations. City location may not be accurate for visits from mobile devices.


Audience > Overview

An at-a-glance view of of visitor metrics. You can see visits over the last month (line graph), new vs returning visitors (pie chart), and a list of values for each of the following metrics:

  • Visits (total number of visits to your site)
  • Unique Visitors (total number of unique visitors to your site)
  • Pageviews (total number of pages viewed on your site)
  • Pages per Visit (average number of pages viewed per visit)
  • Average Visit Duration (average visit length of all visitors)
  • Bounce Rate (percent of single-page visits)
  • New Visitors (percent of total visitors who visited your site for the first time)


Traffic Source > Search Engine Optimization > Queries

Source: Every referral to a website has an origin, or source. Possible sources include: 'google' (the name of a search engine), '' (the name of a referring site), 'spring_newsletter' (the name of one of your newsletters), and 'direct' (visits from people who typed your URL directly into their browser, or who had bookmarked your site).

Medium: Every referral to a website also has a medium. Possible medium include: 'organic' (unpaid search), 'cpc' (cost per click, i.e. paid search), 'referral' (referral), 'email' (the name of a custom medium you have created), 'none' (direct visits have a medium of 'none').

Keyword: The keywords that visitors searched are usually captured in the case of search engine referrals. This is true for both organic and paid search. Note, however, that when SSL search is employed (e.g., if the user is signed in to a Google account, or using the Firefox search bar), Keyword will have the value (not provided).

Campaign is the name of the referring AdWords campaign or a custom campaign that you have created.

Content identifies a specific link or content item in a custom campaign. For example, if you have two call-to-action links within the same email message, you can use different Content values to differentiate them so that you can tell which version is most effective.


Traffic Sources > Search > Organic

This report allows you to view various metrics like Keyword, Visits, Pages/Visit, Avg. Visit Duration, % New Visits and Bounce Rate. You can also drill down on other metrics like Contact, Technology, Traffic Sources and Visitors using the primary and secondary dimensions.


Content > Content > Overview

Google Analytics tracks the following kinds of data about how visitors interact with your site content:

  • The pages on which they enter and exit your site.
  • How often and how long they view individual pages.
  • The extent to which they search your site for specific content.
  • The extent to which they interact with things like slide shows or embedded videos.
  • How frequently they click AdSense ads, and the revenue you see from those clicks.


Conversions > Goals > Overview

Goals are a versatile way to measure how well your site or app fulfills your target objectives. You can set up individual Goals to track discrete actions, like transactions with a minimum purchase amount or the amount of time spent on a screen.

Each time a user completes a Goal, a conversion is logged in your Google Analytics account. You can also give a Goal a monetary value, so you can see how much that conversion is worth to your business. You can analyze the Goal completion rates, or conversion rates in the Goal Reports. Goals conversions also appear in other reports, including the Visitor Report, Traffic Reports, Site Search Reports, and the Events Reports.

Need your Google Analytics set up? Call ITC at 1-800-383-3482 for more details.



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