How to Create a Comprehensive Google Analytics Report
Reporting Google Analytics data effectively should be part of every marketer's repertoire. This can be done with comprehensive reports that transforms data into actionable information.
Google Analytics is a tool that provides insights into what’s going on on your website, your traffic and engagement levels, and your campaigns’ performance. However, the data gathered by GA is immense – at times, it can get overwhelming.
In today’s article, we’ll guide you through the process of building your Google Analytics.
We’ll also cover data points to include and divert attention to. This will allow you, your clients, or executives to view up-to-date metrics and boost marketing efficiency.
So, what metrics should we keep an eye on?
While you can track thousands of metrics, here are some examples of Google Analytics metrics that you should report on:
- Sessions: is the total number of visits to your website;
- Users: unique individuals that have made their way to your website;
- Pageviews: the number of pages viewed by a single user during a visit;
- Average page time: the amount of time a user spends on your website (on average);
- Bounce rate: percentage of sessions that result in a user leaving the website without any further interaction;
- Entrances: points of entry (i.e., your homepage, price page, etc.) from which users access your website.
- Source: where did the traffic originate from;
- Exit rate: calculates the rate at which visitors leave from a specific page.
To reveal more comprehensive insights into your website’s success, make sure to combine these metrics with dimensions.
Why would these insights matter?
Google Analytics metrics give insights across the funnel into visitor habits. However, our findings suggest that the use of Google Analytics favors top-of-the-funnel metrics.
Typically, marketers choose other methods to make downstream metrics more apparent, such as conversions, transactions, income, etc. You may wish to create a cross-channel report and compare this data against other data sources, like CRM platforms.
Here are some questions that GA is great at answering. Your reports will be phenomenal at answering these questions to clients or executives.
- Is my homepage growing?
- What are the most visitor-driven channels?
- Of the people who visit my website, what proportion of them are new visitors?
- Is my website converting visitors? How many times is the objective achieved by visitors? What’s the general conversion rate of the objective?
- What do individuals do on my website? How long do visitors linger on my website? How many pages are they viewing?
Sections of your report
Google Analytics report that you’re about to create needs to revolve around structure and storytelling. Each section of a report will need to work well with forthcoming sections - provide continuity and additional segments on the bigger portions of data.
Let’s begin with the report creation process. The report should begin with ‘Acquisition Overview.’ This section gives a great summary of overall website health. Having this section at the tippy-top of your Google Analytics report relays aggregated performance metrics at a quick glance.
Here’s an example of what the first portion of your report should look like. Now, it may look like a lot of data and metrics to conceptualize. However, Whatagraph pulls all of this data automatically and presents it in a way that’s simple to understand.
You have all of the essentials gauging a website’s performance without overburdening anyone with vanity metrics.
When the time comes, anyone in possession of this report can view their own desired date ranges and compare the data to a period of their choice.
- You (or your client and the executives) can select any date range you wish to view; the data will automatically be updated within seconds.
- You can compare the desired metrics to any previous date. Metrics will automatically be updated, so you’ll see % changes in a specified time period as well as altered graphs.
As you can see, the report has changed once you enabled the date comparison. You’ll see the comparison across the entire report, not just the General Acquisition Overview.
User behavior overview
The second portion of your report will cover the basic user behavior once they land on your site. It will contain the following metrics:
- Average time on a page
- Bounce rate
- Exit rate
- Pageviews per session
Assessing user behavior helps you understand the general consensus of how the audience perceives your content.
Again, this is all about disclosing the performance of your web content in aggregate. Audience behavior can answer the following questions: (that we’re sure your client’s or executives will be asking)
- Is the content engaging enough?
- Are we meeting the expectations of our audience?
- Is browsing the website easy to do?
As you already know, all of this can also be compared to any previous time periods. Any improvements – or website issues – and their impact on audience behavior will be shown here once you enable the date comparison.
Page bounce rates and conversions
As a marketer, you hope that visitors read your article, browse through the website, then convert. Sadly, that’s not always the case – many visitors read the article and leave without even checking others.
This is really frustrating because it takes a lot of time and effort to produce high-quality material. If not for conversion, you can at least expect other pages from the site to be viewed by users.
Fortunately for these pages, not everything is lost – you can still increase the bounce rate and conversion rate.
But you need to find the pages first.
Knowing which traffic sources convert and generate revenue is vital – this way, you can achieve online success. You’ll save yourself time and money from low-converting traffic with this data and concentrate on the high-converting kind instead.
Audience overview – who they are, where do they come from?
Being active on the web, you undoubtedly reach people across the globe. If you’re working for a specific firm or with a client, chances are, they may have a demographic they’re looking to target.
Including a comprehensive audience overview section within your GA report is essential. It allows you to see if the desired audience is showing interest in your website and engaging with it.
With this data, you can actually see if the desired audience is showing interest in your website and engaging with it.
Here you can see the countries where your audience is located. Where they come from – traffic source – should also be neatly displayed, too.
Viewing traffic sources and showcasing this in the report is pertinent. This gives you a great overview of how each source generates traffic that completes your set goals.
Goal completion is measured based on the goals you’ve set for yourself within your Google Analytics dashboard.
Quick reminder: goal tracking can be adjusted to your clients’ or executives’ specifications. In the example above, we were tracking all goals we’ve set for ourselves.
Finally - assessing particular pages and search queries
Google Analytics allows you to gauge the performance of particular pages and even search queries. Including this portion at the very end because it’s very granular data that is usually trumped by the big-picture metrics we went through earlier.
These metrics may be more applicable to an in-house marketing team. However, it doesn’t hurt to have them included in your report.
We’ve concluded the report creation walkthrough – your Google Analytics report is ready to be delivered! About that: feel free to use our pre-built Google Analytics template, which includes all the vital website KPIs. We’ll automatically pull the performance data and turn it into a visual representation.
And the best part of all – it’s free: you’ve got 7 days to try the template and see how it works for you. What’s the catch? There’s none!