You have made sure that the Google Analytics tracking code is placed on your website, but now what? There is a wealth of information that is pulled into this free platform, but half the battle is to understand what the data is telling you. The first step is to understand the terms Google uses and what they mean.
Almost every report includes the number of sessions associated with your metrics. Google defines a Session as a group of interactions that take place within a given time frame. Be sure that you don’t confuse this with how many people have visited your site! One user can open multiple sessions. For example if they interact with your site once, have 30 minutes of inactivity, and then interact with your site again, that equals two sessions.
The goals for every website are different. You may be focused on a specific marketing campaign or you may have just launched your site and want to improve your user interaction. There are four types of goals that you can track: Destination, Duration, Pages/Screens per session, or Event. Any time a user reaches your goal, Analytics will mark it as a Conversion. To learn how to create a goal, visit our blog on Google Analytics goals.
Bounce Rate has become a more common term. It is very similar to and should not be confused with Exit Rate. If a user lands on a page and doesn’t travel to any other pages on your site, that is calculated in your Bounce Rate. When you review reports that show the Exit Rate, it does not include sessions that contributed to Bounce Rate. When a user has a multipage session, the last page in that session will be calculated in the Exit Rate.