Learn how to check website traffic on Google with these helpful tips
Google has a wide range of reports for tracking user behavior from landing pages, content drill down, exit pages and many more that when pulled into the right view can get us a lot of information. We wont dive into all these in this one post. That would be a very long article and likely not serve much useful information.
So we will start by selecting a goal that we actually use and then work back to show you what dimensions we use to help us track that goal's success - Contact Form submissions.
What is a Goal?
When your website converts a visitor to a customer by means of completing an online form, Ecommerce purchase, or download an app, you have successful engaged with them down the sales funnel. Google uses goals to track this activity.
Like your site and many others you have a contact page and on this contact page, most likely a form that users who wish to contact you for help, business request or general feedback will use to submit their data. This form will then automate a redirect to a confirmation page with helpful text to ensure the form was submitted and aid the customer to further information, if needed.
This is why we recommend each contact form submission land on a thank you page. You can set up a custom event to track this page but in most cases, just using the Exit page dimension combined with a few others, you can help paint a picture of a user journey without having to hire a developer for a custom dimension.
A thank you page will show as an Exit page naturally in your reports when a customer completes the conversion by filling in a form and contacting you, hopefully for a potential service or product. And as this page is generally the last page a user visits in the session, It will be tracked as an Exit page of that user session.
Understand the user
We can then start to create a picture of this user. They are most likely towards the bottom of the sales funnel, a qualified lead and worth tracking. So generally we want to know now how they got to the site. Was this a direct link from a referral site, or paid advertisement or better yet, a google search? While a direct link is slightly easier to track and a google ad even more so, let’s take a user from an organic referrer because while we may know for certain what page they exited, we don’t yet know what page they landed on. This is easy so far, just add a second dimension to the Exit Page report for Landing page
That is the easy part. Now, what search term did they use to find that page? This is not a metric that google Analytics delivers any more. Luckily we do have a tool to help us, Google Search Console.
You will need to set up your Google Search console account first. Once Search Console is tracking site performance you will see a table of data showing what search terms your site was found under during a certain period of time. Search console tracks keywords by two ways, clicks and impressions.
Clicks - the amount of visits generated from a specific keyword and Impressions - the amount of time your site shows up in SERP when that keyword is submitted, even when it hasn’t been scrolled into view.
Search Console will help you get a great deal of more data than just KW usage, how users are finding your site, what devices are the most popular, what terms give the most clicks and what pages they land on. It can even be extended to help with missing page reports, crawler errors and creating a sitemap file. To help you set up your console account and better understand some of the tools, visit - moz.com/blog/a-beginners-guide-to-the-google-search-console
Ok, now that you have an account we can track queries to the site on a given date. By matching the Exit Page (Thank you) and Landing page dimensions on Google Analytics to the date on Search Console when that landing page was clicked we can start to frame a bigger picture. We can now see what keywords were used to find that page (impressions) and what keyword was used to click through to the page (clicks).
For example, a landing page name of webdesign dublin would show in Search Console under Pages. We can then match that with the keywords used to find that page using Queries > Clicks. That keyword might be webdesign company dublin. In this case we can learn that your web design page is pulling in visitors that search on terms “web design + company + Dublin” useful for creating SEO campaigns and blog stories around these keyword terms.
There are some notable limitations here to this process. If you have multiple clicks to the web-design page on a certain date, then it will be hard to see what term was used that led to the conversion. In this case you will need to flex analytics and console a bit more by looking for a common trend. Check what device the user had on the Exit Page report by swapping Landing page with device. Also check what county they came from. This will help you narrow it down. You still may be left with multiple users clicking to that page with a mobile device from Ireland, but at least we can get a better idea.
Without further dimensions it may be hard to find exactly what user exited by the contact form but this is just a start. There are ways to extend Google analytics further or even capture hidden info on your contact form that can help you track better. But if these still do not meet your needs, as mentioned at the start of the article, you can use goals and custom metrics to help track this even further. But, as I mentioned that may require help from a developer to update your tracking code.
Contact us to learn more on how to do this and extend your Google Analytics with even more in depth knowledge and training. We can help you understand your analytics better and help you achieve your goals.