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How to Setup Google Analytics and Webmaster Tools

Introduction

Google Analytics (GA) is a powerful tool aimed at making life easier for those of us who manage a website and are involved in the eCommerce arena. This page will go over some of the useful features that go along with a GA account, the benefits you can see from utilizing it, and how to get your own account started. It will also touch on some of the most important metrics that you need to pay attention to, and what exactly each one is telling you. Unfortunately, GA is such a robust program that it would take 10 pages to go over each and every detail that is being tracked.

Contents

What is Google Analytics?

GA is a program that allows website owners to track a variety of different variables and metrics that contribute to overall site success. By simply placing a small tracking code within your site, you will have access to HUGE amounts of data that can be tracked month to month and shows you exactly how people are using your website.

Why Use Analytics?

Creating and maintaining success in eCommerce is very much an ongoing battle. You can’t get everything moving in the right direction and then simply let your well oiled online selling machine fare on its own! Utilizing GA metrics as your guide is a great way to keep an eye on what is and isn’t working on your website, and track the effects that changes have on things like traffic on site visibility.

  • See what's driving users to your site: GA will allow you to see exactly where traffic sources are coming from, down to the keywords they searched for, the links they clicked to get there, and which page they landed on.
  • Find out which site pages are most popular, and which ones are under performing: After tracking data for a little while, it will become quite apparent which pages on your site draw in the most traffic and keep people on the site the longest. This will allows you to use similar strategies and practices on other pages in order to appeal to your audience.
  • See if people are finding what they're looking for on your site: GA will track not only how long a visitor stays on a landing page, but also whether they delved further into your site or hit the back button. If visitors aren't having their search query satisfied by a page, it may be necessary to optimize that page for different keyword phrases.

How Do I Set Up Google Webmaster Tools?

  1. Log into Google Webmaster Tools url: www.google.com/webmasters/tools/
  2. You must have a Google account in order to complete this step: we recommend creating a separate Google account for your analytics and not using your personal account since we will need access
  3. Click “Add a Site”
  4. Enter your sites url (example: zoombyte.com)
  5. Select Alternative Method & Choose the step for copying the Meta tag : In separate window/tab enter in code (example: ) into Head Code area of Home page in the back end of your site
  6. After Code has been pasted in and saved, Navigate back to the Webmaster tool in the other window/tab and click “Verify”
  7. Once verified, on the Webmaster Tools Home page click the account name.
  8. Click “Site Map” from this screen
  9. and again, Click “Add/Test Sitemap” from this screen
  10. Enter “sitemap_index.xml”
  11. Click “Submit Site Map”

How do I Set Up an Account?

First, you will have to either sign up for a Google Account, or login to yours if you already have one. This is free and does not take very long at all. We suggest setting up a separate Google account for WSM to track your data for you.

Once you've logged in to your Google Account, the next step is visiting the GA website, and clicking on "Access Analytics" in the top right corner. You will have to re-enter your password if it's your first time using GA.

Click on "Sign Up" to create a new account for your website. For the "Account Name" you should enter your domain name so it is easy to locate accounts for individual websites. You will also be asked to enter your URL and time zone.

The next step is to set up the Tracking Code Configuration. Here, you will tell Google Analytics whether you are tracking a single domain (domain.com), a single domain with multiple subdomains (domain.com, blog.domain.com, store.domain.com), or multiple top-level domains (domain.com, domain.uk, domain.ca, etc.)

Installing the tracking code is easy with Web Shop Manager (WSM). All you have to do is copy the code provided to you during the GA set up process and paste it into the "Custom Head Code" field in the back end of your site pages.

If you are not set up in WSM yet then the code will need to be placed within the section of your site.

To set up eCommerce tracking within your GA account, follow these steps:

  1. Click the Admin tab at the top right of any screen in Analytics. If you are not already on the Account Administration screen, click the All Accounts link at top left, just below the menu bar
  2. Click the name of the account and then the name of the property that has the profile you want to enable eCommerce Tracking for. If you have a lot of accounts or properties, use the drop down search box in the top left of the menu bar and type to search
  3. Use the Profile drop down menu to select the profile you want
  4. Click the Profile Settings tab
  5. Under the eCommerce Settings section, select "Yes, an eCommerce Site/App"
  6. Click "Apply"

Add/Modify/Delete User to Your Analytics Account

The features described in this article are only available to Analytics account administrators. In addition to administrators, you can also add users with read-only access to reports. Those users cannot modify Analytics settings, and you can restrict them to specific profiles. You can add as many users to an account as you wish.

To add a new user:

  1. Click the Admin tab at the top right of any page in Analytics.
  2. Click the account to which you want to add a user.
  3. Click the Users tab.
  4. Click + New User.
  5. Enter the email address for the user's Google Account. Separate multiple addresses by commas or spaces.
  6. Select User.
  7. From the Available profiles list, select the profiles to which the user should have access. If you do not select a profile, those reports are not available to the user.
  8. Click Add to move these profiles to the Selected profiles list.
  9. Click Save. Any users you created can now log in to Analytics using their Google Account email addresses and passwords.

To modify access for an existing user:

    1. Click the Admin tab at the top right of any page in Analytics.
    2. Click the account to which the user belongs.
    3. Click the Users tab.
    4. Click settings for that user.
    5. If you want to promote the user to an administrator, select Administrator.
    6. If you want to make additional profiles available to the user, select those profiles from theAvailable profiles list, then click Add.
    7. If you want to remove profiles from the user, select those profiles from the Selected profiles list, the click Remove.
      Click Save

To delete a user:

    1. Click the Admin tab at the top right of any page in Analytics.
    2. Click the account to which the user belongs.
    3. Click the Users tab.
    4. Click delete for the user you want to delete

How Do I link My Analytics Account to Google Webmaster Tools 

    1. Login To Google Analytics
    2. In the Upper Right Hand corner Click on the Admin Tab
    3. Scroll Down and click Edit next to your listed url link.
    4. Select the Radio Button next to the URL for the correct site
    5. Click the Save Button
    6. Your Analytics Account is Now Linked to Google Webmaster Tools

 

What's with All These Metrics?

There is an astounding number of metrics and statistics that you can keep track of within GA, and it may take some time for you to get into the swing of things and track metrics with the utmost efficiency. However, there are a few metrics that are EXTRA important, and we will outline a few of them below so you know what to look for right away when you begin your GA tracking efforts.

  • Visitors & Unique Visitors. These metrics are very similar and tell you how many people are coming to your website. The only difference between the two is that "visitors" counts total hits, while "unique visitors" will not count traffic coming from the same place more than once.
  • Bounces/Bounce % is by far one of the most important metrics. A "bounce" is any single page visit that your website receives, meaning any visitor that lands on a page and exits the site entirely without clicking further into its pages. And thus, the bounce rate (or bounce %) would be the percent of people that came to your site and ended up bouncing off. This tells you how relevant your site pages are for the keywords they are ranking for.
  • Entrances. This metric will denote the number of times a user has entered your site. Since it will be the same number as “visits” if you’re looking at the statistics for the entire site, it is useful to look at this statistic for specific site pages. This metric is typically used to gauge the effectiveness of individual landing pages, and how much traffic they are generating.
  • Exits, much like entrances, will be the same as visits if you are looking up the analytics over your entire website. However, if you sort these statistics by individual pages, it will show you which pages are most often the last page that a visitor looks at before leaving the site altogether.
  • Time on Page. This analytics metric can be a little hard to grasp, so let’s try an example after the initial explanation. Time on Page will give you the exact amount of time that a visitor spent on an individual site page, but only if that visitor continues on to another site page. That is the most important, and hardest to understand aspect of this metric. Basically, if a visitor enters your site and lands on a page and then subsequently clicks the back button or navigates to a different site (also known as a bounce), the time spent on your page won’t even be tracked!
  • Source. The source website metric tells you where your traffic is coming from. Most commonly you will see that the largest volume of traffic comes from search queries, but it can also come from a direct navigation (the user typing your URL manually) or links from other sites. This metric is useful because it tells you how much of your traffic is coming from “free” or organic search results, and how much is coming from other means, like paid advertisements or inbound links.

For more detailed instructions you can visit the Google Analytics Support Page
Or watch this video on setting up Google Analytics
For further information through in depth videos by Google themselves, check out the GA IQ Lessons