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How do you measure Engagement with Google Analytics?

Wouldn't it be nice if the was a button you could click that would tell you all about user engagement on your website? It does exist and is a standard report in Google Analytics.

What does this report in Google Analytics really tell you about user engagement on your website?

This report is a holistic overview of your entire website engagement- Pageviews, Page Depth, Session Durations and Sessions.

These reports are an excellent big picture look of your entire website.  As with most reports, it has no useful business intelligence without context. So where do you find context? Unfortunately, if you have gotten to this point without a clearly articulated strategy for your website you are going to want to give up and throw in the towel!

No Context. No Connection.

Don't give up. Back up the bus and start fresh by answering a few questions:

  • Why do we have a website? If the answer is because we have to,  I suggest you do throw in the towel. Websites require resources and if you don't have a clear vision for your website, you might as well quit. A website should be an extension of your business. Your unique virtual personality. A place where you can build trust with the audience that are not ready to call you or be called. A place where your customers can reaffirm their decision to purchase from you.
  • What are the goals of our website? There are far too many companies that do not have goals. You probably would not launch a new product line without specific goals and expectations so doesn't it make sense to do the same with your website. If you are struggling with this, please download our free Strategic Alignment Tool.

Once you have clear goals and objectives then context is easier to see. Is there a connection between Time on Page and goal completion? Is there a connection between Traffic Sources and Goal Completion? City? Session Duration? Time Since Last Visit? Day of Week? Blah, Blah, Blah. The combinations are exhaustive. However, Goals provide  context which allow the data to take on meaning and is no longer a holistic overview, but can become actionable business intelligence.

Goals  provide context in Google Analytics.  Maybe you feel like I have become the Mad Hatter of Analytics with this blog. That's OK- As Long as you set some goals for your website!

If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there
— Lewis Carroll

Phil Wiseman is the Founder of Analytics That Profit.

 He earned a B.S. Degree in Chemical Physics from Centre College in Danville, Ky. He is certified in Google AdWords, Inbound Marketing by HubSpot and Social Media by Podium. Analytics That Profit is certified in Google Analytics. He is also an ASQ Certified Manager of Quality/ Organizational Excellence and ASQ Certified Quality Auditor. This background in quality allows him to use proven methods and tools for continuous improvement to enhance  user experience with your business.

Feel free to contact us with any questions or topics for future posts -