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7 Things Beginners should know About Google Analytics

7 Things Beginners should know About Google Analytics

Analysis of the website content is an excellent way of knowing how well your web content is doing. There are so many tools that allow you to keep an eye on the performance of your content. 

One of the best tools for analysis is Google Analytics. It is a free tool, so it is cost-effective as well. To get the best results you should always have the latest version. Analytics is a powerful tool for monitoring the patterns of the traffic of the website. Apart from being entirely free, you can also integrate it with other tools like AdWords, AdSense making the tool more appealing.

When you are new to the Google Analytics, it is possible that you may feel overwhelmed by the jargon. You can use it in an efficient manner by first looking at a guide so that you have a better understanding of the tool.

Here is a simple guide to help you in using the tool.

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1. Easy Steps to Sign Up for Google Analytics:

You can sign up for it by following two easy steps. The first step is to enter all the necessary information like the website you wish to track, a name of an organization and URL of the site. The tool gives the tracking code of the site which is a snippet of JavaScript. It is used for verification of the account. It is also used for browsing the data of the users.

The second step involves inserting the code manually to your website or if you are using WordPress you can use a plugin. Just in these two simple steps, you have created an account.

2. Navigating Through the Homepage:

You can see the overview of your account on the homepage. There are three tabs which are present on the navigation bar. The three tabs are labeled customization, reporting and admin. You can see the list of websites which are tracked by Google Analytics on the homepage. You can view the related data by just clicking on the site.

3. Understanding the Important Metrics of the Tool:

If you find the language used in the tool difficult than before using it, it is important to understand the meaning of the important parameters.

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You need to have a good understanding of metrics so that you can have a better understanding of the data and your dashboard. You should have a basic understanding of metrics such as users, sessions, average session duration, page views, bounce rates, etc.

4. Analytics Reporting and its Constituents:

It is the section you spend most of the time on. You can analyze and track all of the incoming data and use the information to make your site a success.

The reporting panel is composed of several components such as dashboards, intelligence events, shortcuts, real-time, acquisition, audience, behaviors and conversions, etc. You can only analyze the data productively if you know what each of the factor that constitutes the reporting means

5. Know Where Your Traffic is coming from:

One of the most important parts of analytics account is overviewing the sources of traffic. If you know the source of the traffic you know about the effectiveness of your SEO and provide an SEO update if needed.

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The overview will highlight the weaknesses so that it is easier for you to get rid of them and look for solutions to increase the traffic. It also tells you a lot about the incoming links and other advertising campaigns. You should pay particular attention to the keyword reports if you wish to know how the search traffic can find your website.

6. Customizing the Analytics Panel:

There is a customization panel which provides the opportunity to create the reports according to your explicit requirements. You can save all the necessary reports in one place which allows you to review them easily as it provides quick access to them.

You can create your customized report by picking dimensions, metrics and their display design. Specifying at least one metric or dimension is essential for building it.

7. Take Control of Your Account:

It is a tab which allows you to control all the options related to the account. You can also control all the links related to the website with this tab. It gives you the authority to add or remove the site.

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You can also manage users and define their level of access. If you want to re-configure the code you can find it in this tab as well. You can find links to other accounts like Ad Exchange, AdWords, and other analytic accounts here as well.

If you have a basic understanding of all these elements, then you will find it easier to use the tool and make the best of it.

Featured photo credit: FG Blog via cdn.foregroundweb.com

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Adnan Manzoor

Data Analyst & Life Coach

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Last Updated on February 15, 2019

7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

Joe’s Goals

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    Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

    Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

    Daytum

      Daytum

      is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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      Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

      Excel or Numbers

        If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

        What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

        Evernote

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          I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

          Evernote is free with a premium version available.

          Access or Bento

            If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

            Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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            You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

            Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

            All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

            Conclusion

            I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

            What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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