Five awesome tips to extract valuable SEO secrets from Google analytics data
Google analytics provides a wealth of valuable SEO data. But are you using it to its full potential to help create better content, drive more traffic and convert it more effectively?
It often helps to mine Google analytics data for SEO intelligence with a specific business objective in mind. The analytics and SEO tips covered in this article are all techniques I use to help me decide what new content to create, and whether or not my content is making an impact.
Remember that any SEO insight you derive from analytical data needs to be moderated by your social marketing and business requirements. Just because Google rates you very highly for one keyword doesn't mean you should focus your entire SEO content strategy on that topic - you might alienate loyal readers who enjoy your coverage on a wide range of topics.
1. Segment analytics data for today
By default, Google analytics displays about a month's worth of data. This is great for a brief overview of how your site is performing, but you can derive deeper SEO insights by splitting the data into segments - day, week, month, year, historical.
I always take a look at my current day's analytics information. It's useful to:
- Determine the immediate impact of content as soon as it appears in Google's index: Use it to measure the impact of trending, topical content. The article entitled "Google's Panda and Penguin updates are great for bloggers, marketers and business appeared immediately in the number one spot for "Google panda penguin", just after the Penguin update went live. It continues to drive plenty of highly engaged traffic.
- Isolate localized spikes in referral traffic: In the grand scheme of things, a referrer who sends a hundred hits in one afternoon won't make much of an impact. However, if you are watching on the day it happens, you can leverage this knowledge. Find out who said what about you, and react appropriately. It may lead to a new social connection or business partner.
2. Exclude erroneous traffic spikes from analytical data
Every now and then a social media site, or news site, will send a thousand visits in a couple of hours and then go silent again for months, years or forever. These traffic spikes, if they're large enough, can warp your data and skew your SEO strategy as a result.
To remove referral traffic from a specific source in Google analytics:
- Click the "advanced" link
- Select "Exclude"
- Select "Source/Medium" from "Dimensions"
- Enter the name of the source (i.e. stumbleupon) and click Apply
Remember that you can add as many advanced rules to your data as possible. This helps to focus on specific aspects of your site's SEO and analytical data.
3. Use content navigation to analyze traffic patterns
It can be difficult to "guide" visitors to a conversion. It helps to understand exactly how people are navigating your site in order to make intelligent decisions about how to improve the conversion rate.
The content navigation summary can shed light on what people are looking for when they browse a certain page. Often the results can be surprising and lead you to a new understanding of what visitors want.
To use the content summary:
Share this great article with people you like!
- Click the "Content" tab in the left sidebar
- Select "Pages" under "Site Content"
- Select the "Navigation Summary" tab at the top of the page
- Select the page you want to analyze from the "Current Selection" drop down
The navigation summary is particularly useful for gaining insight into what people are looking for. Do they go to your services? Do they read your blog? Do they bounce?
Get all the latest from WSM4B!
Follow WSM4B to keep tabs on the best business ideas, plus tips to build & market your business.
Get free help for your business on everything from building websites to marketing & SEO.