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Google Analytics quite simply is one of the most powerful tools we marketers can use to analyse and gain insight into our web traffic.  If you are a regular Google Analytics user you may have noticed that the dashboard has recently been updated to make it more user friendly, if you are a novice then please read on and we shall explain what the dashboard shows you.

This is the first in a series of blogs that will explain each section of Google Analytics.  This first blog is an overview of what you see when you first log in…….


On the left hand-side you will see the different reports which you can drill down into to gain more insight into your traffic.  (We will run through these in more detail through the series of the blogs).



Now, if you look to the right hand-side of your screen you will see a number of different bar charts, line charts, pie charts and tables.  This is the overview of all of the data within Google Analytics of the report categories displayed on the left hand-side.


The audience overview shows you at a glance the users (number of people viewing your website), sessions (number of times users have visited your website), bounce rate (how many people left your website after visiting just one page) and session durations over a time period – You have the option to change the timeframe on all of these overview reports.   Then the visit chart shows the most popular days and times your site has been visited.  This is good for understanding the best days and times for putting your blogs live.


The real time data shows you how many users are active on your website right now.



You are then shown the acquisition overview bar chart which identifies where traffic is coming from in terms of whether it is through a Google search, they’ve come directly by putting your web address in the URL bar or from social media etc, then the source (Google direct, social etc) and how many have come from a referral (for example you have a link from another website).


You can then see at a glance which country your users are in.



You’re also shown a snapshot of your users’ activity overtime, in terms of how many users are active daily, weekly and monthly within the set time frame.  This is important as you want to gain long term engagement with your users  Next you’re shown how well you retain your users.  To keep your users returning you need to give them something to return for, but if users are just visiting to get the information they need then you will see this drop off over time, which isn’t a negative thing as they have got what they came for.

Then you’re shown a snapshot of what type of devices users are using, whether it is desktop, mobile or tablet.



Then one of the most important reports is the pages visited.  This identifies which page is getting the most visits.  This helps you understand the type of information your visitors are wanting to find out about.  Finally if you have set up goals or Adwords you will be shown information on this.  We won’t go into detail on these as we will cover these in a later blog.



So this was an overview of what you’re shown when you first log in. Please keep coming back to our website to see the next blog which will explain the Audience section of Google Analytics, but in the meantime enjoy finding your way around Google Analytics and getting to grips with the power of the data you have.


If you would like any further information on Google Analytics or to discuss your marketing requirements, please contact the team on