When looking at the data that comes from your website using Google Analytics, you need to be able to differentiate between what is worthwhile data, and useless garbage.  Figuring out what’s good data and bad data, it’s like mining for gold.  According to Josh Braaten, he says, “Advanced prospectors profit because they know where to look to find the nuggets, while inexperienced practitioners come up with only dirt after making the mistake of trying to prospect the entire mountain.”

As Braatan puts it, Google Analytics is like the pickaxe that you can use to help mine through the mountain of wasted dirt and find the nuggets of gold that is the good data.  There are many tips that have come from web analytics professionals that you can use to help obtain the best data from Google Analytics.

Converters by Count of Visit

This segment gives you three segments to show the behaviors of people who convert after 1 visit, 2 to 5 visits, or after 6+ visits.  This can give you a good feel for what kind of content people are looking at on your site.  With this data, you can then act upon that data at various points in the sales tunnel.

You can begin applying the three segments to any content reports to see the relative difference in content consumption by count of visit.   By applying these one at a time, you can take a deeper look into your user’s behavior across the customer journey.

Link to Segment Series: http://bit.ly/GASS-CbCoV

Whales

Whales is a wonderful companion to use with your lead generation process.  It will capture the visitors who spend a lot of money with you.  By utilizing Whales, it can help you understand the behavior of your top customers, the ones who spend the most money with you,  then that will give you a great opportunity to help you figure out how to motivate your other customers to spend more with you.

Link to this Segment: http://bit.ly/GASS-Whales

Organic Image Traffic

In January, a change in Google Images caused many people with image-rich sites to lose a good chunk of traffic.  You can follow the link to see how you can see search traffic coming in from the Google Images search engine, which is spate from the regular organic search.  This will allow you to investigate image-specific search trends.

Link to Segment: http://bit.ly/GASS-OrgImg

Screens Under 600 Pixels Wide

User agent detection from Google can be thrown off due to all of the new mobile devices on the market today.  There is a way to filter for a variety of mobile devices by applying a regular expression to the device’s screen size.

This is great because it controls for devices that aren’t completely detected by Google Analytics by excluding screens that have a 0 by 0 pixel dimension.  This is usually the case for devices that are prone to detection issues.  This segment captures the devices that have a screen resolution that range from 100-599 by 100-599 pixels.

Link to Segment: http://bit.ly/GASS-Screen599

Keyword Length Segment Series

There are many articles dedicated to advanced segments where keyword length segments have appeared.  This is because looking at traffic by keyword length can actually reveal insights that are quite significant.  Segment reports by keywords that contain 3, 4, 5, or 6+ words with this set of 4 Google Analytics segments to help understand the proportion of a website’s visits by head terms that are relative to long-tail terms with in the search space.

Link to Segment Series: http://bit.ly/GASS-KWlength

Common ISPs

This report can be a great place to help anyone start your investigation when attempting to find odd activity on your website in the Google Analytics profile.  By using this segment, you can weed out the real Culprit ISP that is sending a large amount of unnatural traffic by filtering out a vast majority of common ISPs.

Link to Segment: http://bit.ly/GASS-ISPs

DMA Quartiles

This segment series you control population when you are viewing geographic reports on Google Analytics.  It uses Neilsen’s DMA measurements, which helps to group major metros into four quartiles.  By viewing the export data that uses these segments to compare to Neilsen’s demographic stats to look past all the raw numbers, and into what’s important, the market share for each of the four quartiles.

Link to Segment Series: http://bit.ly/GASS-DMAs

Blog Bounce Remover

When people come to your blog, naturally, people will do one thing:  bounce.  Most of the time, people will come to your site to read what you have to say, and then leave the site all together, creating a large bounce rate.  This segment won’t remove blog traffic, but it will help to remove the folks who landed on your blog to look at just one page of your site before moving on.

Link to Segment: http://bit.ly/GASS-BlgBnc

The Brand Interest Segment

On your site, there are various page types that help convey the message your brand is trying to make.  These pages can include an “about” page or a “testimonial” page.  There are three segments here that help measure different levels of engagement with your brand.

  • Those who didn’t view your brand page
  • Those who  looked at your brand page, but didn’t look at your blog
  • Those who viewed both your brand page AND your blog

Link to Segment Series: http://bit.ly/GASS-Brand

Q&A Keyword Monitoring

There are keyword modifiers that are defiantly a dead giveaway for consumer intent.  What sort of words could they be?  The modifiers that are used include “how,” “what,” and “versus.”  They are filtered into this advanced segment with a regular expression.

Link to Segment: http://bit.ly/GASS-QandA

Cart Abandoners by Traffic Source

Isn’t it frustrating when you run an ecommerce site, and a good portion of people who come to your site abandon your cart without actually checking out?  The answer why this happens can quite different depending on who’s answering.  You can explore the differences in each cart abandonment by looking at, and segmenting, the traffic source.

Link to Segment: http://bit.ly/GASS-Carts