beginners guide to google analytics

If you are new on the web and would like to start tracking your website data – but do not know where to start – stay foot, because you are in the right place. When trying to rank on Google, Google Analytics is the tool you need to use to track your data, for numerous reasons.


What is Google Analytics?

One of the most used web analytics tools on the Internet (source: w3techs), Google Analytics (GA) is a service which keeps track of your website data. One of its greatest features is that it is a freemium service, i.e. free of charge except for (premium) virtual goods, functionality or proprietary features.


How Can I Make Use of Google Analytics?

Google Analytics is integrated with AdWords, an online advertising service and Google’s main source of revenue.

You can access it here . When you add the tracking code (see below), you will be able to see all important data about your audience.

GA dashboard is user-friendly and very simple.

Audience Overview Google Analytics

Google Analytics Reporting overview

There are four tabs in the top menu: Home, Reporting, Customization, and Admin.

Home is where you start everything – and can add new websites to your tracking list.

When you click Reporting, you fill find a list in the left sidebar, which includes your Dashboard, Shortcuts, Intelligence Events, Real-time, Audience, Acquisition, Behavior, and Conversions.

Each tracking category can provide you with invaluable data about the type of your users, about their behavior on their site, what they do on it, how much time they spend browsing your site’s pages, where they come from, what kind of browser they use, their language, operating system, even screen resolution of their device – and many more!

A collection of this data can be seen on a monthly, weekly, daily and even hourly level, including real time – meaning that you will be able to see who is currently on your site, what they are doing and will this visit be converted into (potential) revenue.

Customization tab is there to help you create custom reports, whereas Admin tab allows you to manage your website’s Google Analytics account.


How Do I Track My Analytics?

First of all, you are going to have to have two things: a website and a Google account.

In order to grasp GA data, you need to add the asynchronous tracking code (e.g. UA-0123456-7) directly to your site (if you need any help on how to do that, first read this Analytics Help guide for setting up the tracking code). After that, the code does the magic and you will be able to see the data in your Google Analytics Dashboard.


What’s the Next Step?

If you found this interesting and want to make better use of this tool, Analytics Academy is THE place to learn about Digital Analytics Fundamentals.

Additionally, you can find all lessons about Digital Analytics Fundamentals on Analytics Academy – the official playlist of Google Analytics’ YouTube channel, where you will learn how to get started with digital analytics, how to use the data obtained from GA and navigate through GA and conversions reports – and many more!


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Vesna Savić

Dedicates her time to learning about better means of communication, translating knowledge into practice, and is a passionate reader.