Tag Archives: Google Analytics

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7 Google Tag Manager courses to prioritize in 2018

If you love data (and what marketing expert doesn’t?), then learning Google Tag Manager should be high on your priority list this year.

Unfortunately, many spend so much time on Google Analytics that GTM gets pushed to the wayside. Google Tag Manager (GTM) is a powerful, versatile tool that helps you track and manage your own website data.

Since understanding analytics is increasingly important for businesses of all sizes, there’s no better time to start learning GTM than right now.

So what exactly does Google Tag Manager do for you? In a nutshell, this tool lets you easily add snippets of code called tags to your site. These tags track things your visitors do.

For instance, you could set up tags to track how many people download a specific file, which channels bring visitors to your site, and even how quickly visitors scroll through your pages. The tags then send your information to your third-party sites of choice, such as Google Analytics or Bing Ads.

The GTM web interface is easy to use and requires no in-depth coding skills, so you can stay on top of your tracking without relying on your web developer to do everything for you.

Getting started with Google Tag Manager isn’t always an intuitive process. You’ll probably want to seek out some training instead of trying to figure things out as you go.

Whether you’re brand-new to this tool or you have some basic knowledge about it already, here are seven courses that will help you get the hang of GTM and take charge of your data.

1. The 2018 Google Analytics Bootcamp on Udemy

If you’re not sure where to start learning GTM, the 2018 Google Analytics Bootcamp on Udemy is a great place to begin. I’ve found that this course is unique among the many other Google Analytics courses out there because it doesn’t just teach you the basics of Google Analytics – it also shows you how to combine that tool with Google Tag Manager.

GTM is essential for making the most of Google Analytics, yet many marketers don’t learn it until long after they’ve mastered the GA basics. Learning both together is a smart way to ensure you make quick progress right out of the gate.

The 2018 Google Analytics Bootcamp on Udemy will get you up to speed with both Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager

If you know a little bit about Google Analytics already, but you want to start getting more out of it, you will most likely find this course helpful. You’ll learn how to set up a Google Analytics property the right way, read and understand reports, and track different kinds of data using Google Tag Manager.

If you’re an intermediate-level marketer, some of this course’s Google Analytics information may be familiar to you already, but it’s still a great introduction to GTM.

I was able to get this course during a Udemy sale for less than the original cost, and with the course you’ll get lifetime access to three hours of instructional videos, several supplemental resources, and a certificate of completion.

Udemy has frequent sales, so if this price is a little steep for you now, keep an eye on the course – you may be able to snag it at a discount later.

2. Google Tag Manager Fundamentals course by Google

If you’re just getting started with Google Tag Manager, why not go straight to the source for information?

Google’s own course provides a solid and comprehensive overview of using GTM. And like Google’s other analytics courses, this course is free. Just keep in mind that you’ll probably want to combine this course with at least one other.

This will ensure you get a well-rounded perspective on GTM.

7 Google Tag Manager courses to prioritize in 2018

After you finish the Google Tag Manager Fundamentals course, you can brush up on your skills with some of Google’s other free courses

3. Google Tag Manager Essential Training on Lynda.com

If you’ve ever browsed through Lynda.com’s extensive library of tech-related videos, you probably won’t be surprised to learn that they offer a Google Tag Manager course.

This course is just over two hours long and provides an overview of the most important aspects of using GTM, from creating containers to understanding the data layer.

7 Google Tag Manager courses to prioritize in 2018

Google Tag Manager Essential Training on Lynda.com

If you don’t already have a Lynda.com subscription, prices start at $25/month. You may also be able to get free access to the site through your workplace, school, or public library.

4. Google Tag Manager YouTube Series by Weboq

YouTube can be a great place to learn about almost anything, including Google Tag Manager.

If you’re a beginner or intermediate-level marketer, you may find Weboq’s GTM playlist very useful, even though it’s not a course per se. This playlist starts with the basics and tackles more complex topics later on.

If you want to learn to do something specific with GTM – like installing Hotjar or remarketing with AdWords, for instance – you’ll find plenty of specific, step-by-step how-tos here.

7 Google Tag Manager courses to prioritize in 2018

Weboq’s Google Tag Manager YouTube playlist starts with the basics

5. Google Tag Manager Tutorials on YouTube by Measureschool

Measureschool’s channel is another good resource for learning about Google Tag Manager on YouTube. There’s a lot of content here, directed towards a wide range of skill levels – beginners as well as advanced users will be able to find something helpful.

This channel is updated with new videos regularly, so if you like the material, check back for fresh GTM tips and tutorials every week or two.

7 Google Tag Manager courses to prioritize in 2018

Measureschool publishes new Google Tag Manager tutorials on YouTube regularly

6. Master the Fundamentals of Google Tag Manager by CXL

This results-oriented course, led by marketing expert Chris Mercer, is designed to take you from beginner to proficient in GTM in just eight classes.

Starting from the very first class, which walks you through setting up a tag, you’ll practice essential hands-on GTM skills. This course also gives you access to 10 video lessons that explain the more conceptual side of GTM, such as understanding what tags, triggers, and variables are.

After you finish the course, you’ll get a certificate of completion. This course is on the pricey side at $299, but if you’re motivated and want to see results ASAP, it may be worth the cost.

7 Google Tag Manager courses to prioritize in 2018

CXL’s beginner-level Google Tag Manager course will get you up and running in eight classes

7. Google Tag Manager Workshop by LunaMetrics

Online classes are convenient and accessible, but sometimes, the ability to ask questions and discuss new concepts in person is priceless.

If you learn best in a real-life classroom environment, LunaMetrics’ in-person GTM training sessions might be ideal for you. These day-long workshops are offered in major cities across the U.S., from Los Angeles to Boston.

7 Google Tag Manager courses to prioritize in 2018

Cities where LunaMetrics holds training sessions for Google Tag Manager, Google Analytics, and more. Source

Prices start at $799 for a one-day workshop. While this isn’t a cheap way to learn Google Tag Manager, keep in mind that you’re also getting a unique opportunity to network with other marketers and collaborate while you learn – something that’s hard to replicate over the internet.

Wrapping up

Google Tag Manager is a must-have tool for every marketer and data-savvy webmaster out there. While it has a bit of a learning curve, GTM opens up tons of possibilities for tracking and improving your site’s performance, so it’s well worth putting in the time and effort to learn how to use it.

Which of these Google Tag Manager courses are you going to focus on this year?

 

Amanda DiSilvestro is a writer for No Risk SEO, an all-in-one reporting platform for agencies. You can connect with Amanda on Twitter and LinkedIn, or check out her content services at amandadisilvestro.com.

Getting results from your website means asking the right questions

Contributor Dianna Huff explains that blending website data, smart online and proven offline marketing tricks of the trade will generate new leads and sales inquiries for small businesses.

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The ultimate guide to bot herding and spider wrangling

In Part 1 of a three-part series, Columnist Stephan Spencer does a deep dive into bots, explaining what they are and why crawl budgets are important.

The post The ultimate guide to bot herding and spider wrangling appeared first on Search Engine Land.



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Google Surveys now available in more than 50 countries

Companies can use the free or enterprise paid version to collect consumer insights in more countries.

The post Google Surveys now available in more than 50 countries appeared first on Search Engine Land.



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Are you ready for the attribution changes coming to Google AdWords?

If you’re not, contributor Mona Elesseily will help you get up to speed. Here’s her overview of attribution and five different replacement models available in Google AdWords.

The post Are you ready for the attribution changes coming to Google AdWords? appeared first on Search Engine Land.



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A guide to the standard reports in Google Analytics: real-time reports

Google Analytics is a tool that can provide invaluable insights into what’s happening on your website, your levels of traffic and engagement, and the success of your campaigns.

However, to a newcomer to Google Analytics, the array of different reports available can seem a little overwhelming. Once you’ve got Google Analytics set up for your website, where do you look first? Where will you find the most useful data for your campaigns?

Reports on Google Analytics are broadly divided into two types. There are standard reports, which are the preset reports listed down the left-hand side of your dashboard, divided into the segments Real-Time, Audience, Acquisition, Behavior and Conversions.

The data that appears in these is predetermined by Google Analytics, but you also have the option to customize many of them, allowing you to use the standard reports as a base and then tweak them to your liking.

Then there are custom reports, which can either be created completely from scratch with whatever data you want to gather together in a single view, or created based on a standard report, with additional segments or filters added to tailor the report to your needs.

There are dozens of different standard reports available in Google Analytics, providing a wealth of insight into audience demographics, sources of traffic, content performance, campaign performance and much, much more.

In this series, we’re going to tackle the gargantuan task of explaining each segment of Google Analytics and the standard reports they contain. We’ll cover the data you can find within each standard report, and how it can be used in your marketing and SEO efforts.

First up are real-time reports. How do they work, and what kinds of campaigns are they useful for?

What are real-time reports?

As it says on the tin, the Real-Time Reports section in Google Analytics allows you to monitor activity on your site in real time, as it happens.

It can be a useful way of “taking the pulse” of your website in a specific moment, or tracking the response to a campaign in real-time. Just don’t get too obsessed with watching the numbers go up and down!

A visitor to your site qualifies for the real-time report if they have triggered an event, or pageview, within the last five minutes. This is different from the other types of standard report, where a session is defined by a 30-minute window.

The Real-Time Reports section is broken down into:

Overview

This is the big-picture view of what’s happening on your website at any given moment. The Real-Time Overview report shows how many users are currently active on your site, a list of the top active pages, top sources of referral traffic, top social traffic sources, the top locations that users are visiting from, and more.

Locations

This report drills deeper into the available data on where exactly in the world your users are accessing your website from.

A guide to the standard reports in Google Analytics: real-time reports

In the initial view, this information is broken down by country, but if you select a country name from the list or the map of active users, you can ‘zoom in’ on exactly which cities your users are logging in from. If you select a city from the list or map, you can get even more granular and filter the data by that specific city.

Note that if you apply a country or city filter and then navigate to another report in the section, such as Traffic Sources, the data presented to you will continue to be filtered by that region until you opt to clear the filters.

A guide to the standard reports in Google Analytics: real-time reports

Real-time location data can be useful if you’re running a campaign targeted at a specific region of the world and want to monitor its performance, or if you want to get a sense of where your users are accessing your website from at different times of day.

Traffic Sources

As the name indicates, this real-time report shows where on the web your visitors are coming to your site from.

The data is organized by medium (how the visitors are getting to your site – organic search, direct traffic, via email, via social media, and so on), source (where visitors are coming to your site from), and the number of active users – or, if you select the Page Views filter, the number of pageviews from that traffic source in the last 30 minutes.

This real-time report can be useful if, for example, you’ve had a few different mentions in the press recently and want to gauge which one is generating more traffic to your site, or if you’re running a social campaign and want to assess how well it’s working.

Content/Screens

The Content report (called Screens if you’re viewing analytics for a mobile app) shows which specific pages of your site visitors are currently active on, showing the page URL, the page title, and the number and percentage of active users on that page. Again, you can switch to viewing this by pageviews (or screen views) in the last 30 minutes instead of by active users.

Another handy feature of the real-time Content report is that it breaks down your user data by device, so you can see which percentage of visitors are accessing your site on desktop, mobile, and tablet.

A guide to the standard reports in Google Analytics: real-time reports

Events

This report is useful if you’ve used Google Analytics’ Events feature to create custom events for interactions on your site – such as button clicks, downloads, video plays, ad clicks, and so on. More detailed, non-real-time data on Events can be found in the Behavior section of your Google Analytics dashboard.

You can then use the real-time data from this report to track the top events on your site as they occur, or switch to viewing those activated in the past 30 minutes. Google sub-divides these into Event Categories and Event Actions, and as with the Content report, also shows you the breakdown of which devices your visitors are using when they trigger Events.

Conversions

The Conversions report will track the real-time completion of any Goals you’ve set up in Google Analytics.

Goals are different to Events in that they track the completion of an activity that contributes to the success of your business, rather than just an interaction with your site. This can include making a purchase, filling in a sales form, subscribing to a mailing list, and so on. More detailed, non-real-time data about Goal completions can be found in the Conversions section of GA.

As with the previous two reports, the Real-Time Conversions report breaks down which devices your visitors are using when they convert, and also allows you to view the data by active users or by Goal Hits in the last 30 minutes.

How can you use real-time reports in your campaigns?

Testing and troubleshooting campaign setup

One very handy quick use for real-time reports in Google Analytics is to test that everything is set up and working correctly. Unlike with non-real-time reports, there’s no wait for data to begin displaying, so you can immediately tell if things are in order, or if there’s an issue you need to troubleshoot.

Maybe you’ve just set up a new tracking feature in GA, such as a new Event or Goal, and you want to make sure you’re registering the form submissions properly. Or you might have created a new tracking link for your email marketing campaign, and you want to test that it’s showing up in the reports as expected.

You can test these out by having someone from your team carry out the Event or Goal that you want to track, or click the link in your campaign email, and then monitoring real-time reports to make sure that the activity shows up correctly.

Monitor campaigns unfolding in real-time

As we mentioned earlier, it’s not always a good idea to get too bogged down in watching the numbers on your site go up and down – often, the best insights from a campaign can be gleaned after the fact, as it’s not always clear what’s taking place in the moment.

However, there are some types of campaign that benefit from real-time monitoring and influencing. For example, say you’re running a social campaign, and you want to adjust your level of activity in real time based on audience interaction.

Real-time reports are the best way for you to monitor this, and will tell you useful things like when activity from a post or a tweet has dropped off (meaning it’s time to push out the next one), turn on paid promotion, or ask influencers to give your campaign a boost.

Capitalize on what’s trending

You may also need to react in the moment to something that isn’t part of a pre-planned campaign. For example, sudden activity on a specific piece of content or on one of your social channels might alert you to a big press hit, or that particular topic suddenly being in the news.

Checking up on real-time reports every so often can tip you off to when this is happening, and allow you to respond in an agile fashion. If it’s a trending piece of content, you could spotlight it on your front page, or knock out a quick update or refresh.

If it’s a big press hit, you can monitor where the traffic is coming to your website from and plan how to capitalize on the attention: are lots of people finding you on Facebook? Can you update your Facebook page or push out some paid social advertising? If people are searching for your brand all of a sudden, now might be a good time to check how you appear for those search terms and if necessary, do some on-the-spot reputation management.

How do you make use of real-time reports in Google Analytics? If you have any novel ways of integrating these into a marketing campaign, share them in the comments!

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A guide to the standard reports in Google Analytics: Real-time reports

Google Analytics is a tool that can provide invaluable insights into what’s happening on your website, your levels of traffic and engagement, and the success of your campaigns.

However, to a newcomer to Google Analytics, the array of different reports available can seem a little overwhelming. Once you’ve got Google Analytics set up for your website, where do you look first? Where will you find the most useful data for your campaigns?

Reports on Google Analytics are broadly divided into two types. There are standard reports, which are the preset reports listed down the left-hand side of your dashboard, divided into the segments Real-Time, Audience, Acquisition, Behavior and Conversions.

The data that appears in these is predetermined by Google Analytics, but you also have the option to customize many of them, allowing you to use the standard reports as a base and then tweak them to your liking.

Then there are custom reports, which can either be created completely from scratch with whatever data you want to gather together in a single view, or created based on a standard report, with additional segments or filters added to tailor the report to your needs.

There are dozens of different standard reports available in Google Analytics, providing a wealth of insight into audience demographics, sources of traffic, content performance, campaign performance and much, much more.

In this series, we’re going to tackle the gargantuan task of explaining each segment of Google Analytics and the standard reports they contain. We’ll cover the data you can find within each standard report, and how it can be used in your marketing and SEO efforts.

First up are real-time reports. How do they work, and what kinds of campaigns are they useful for?

What are real-time reports?

As it says on the tin, the Real-Time Reports section in Google Analytics allows you to monitor activity on your site in real time, as it happens.

It can be a useful way of “taking the pulse” of your website in a specific moment, or tracking the response to a campaign in real-time. Just don’t get too obsessed with watching the numbers go up and down!

A visitor to your site qualifies for the real-time report if they have triggered an event, or pageview, within the last five minutes. This is different from the other types of standard report, where a session is defined by a 30-minute window.

The Real-Time Reports section is broken down into:

Overview

This is the big-picture view of what’s happening on your website at any given moment. The Real-Time Overview report shows how many users are currently active on your site, a list of the top active pages, top sources of referral traffic, top social traffic sources, the top locations that users are visiting from, and more.

Locations

This report drills deeper into the available data on where exactly in the world your users are accessing your website from.

A guide to the standard reports in Google Analytics: Real-time reports

In the initial view, this information is broken down by country, but if you select a country name from the list or the map of active users, you can ‘zoom in’ on exactly which cities your users are logging in from. If you select a city from the list or map, you can get even more granular and filter the data by that specific city.

Note that if you apply a country or city filter and then navigate to another report in the section, such as Traffic Sources, the data presented to you will continue to be filtered by that region until you opt to clear the filters.

A guide to the standard reports in Google Analytics: Real-time reports

Real-time location data can be useful if you’re running a campaign targeted at a specific region of the world and want to monitor its performance, or if you want to get a sense of where your users are accessing your website from at different times of day.

Traffic Sources

As the name indicates, this real-time report shows where on the web your visitors are coming to your site from.

The data is organized by medium (how the visitors are getting to your site – organic search, direct traffic, via email, via social media, and so on), source (where visitors are coming to your site from), and the number of active users – or, if you select the Page Views filter, the number of pageviews from that traffic source in the last 30 minutes.

This real-time report can be useful if, for example, you’ve had a few different mentions in the press recently and want to gauge which one is generating more traffic to your site, or if you’re running a social campaign and want to assess how well it’s working.

Content/Screens

The Content report (called Screens if you’re viewing analytics for a mobile app) shows which specific pages of your site visitors are currently active on, showing the page URL, the page title, and the number and percentage of active users on that page. Again, you can switch to viewing this by pageviews (or screen views) in the last 30 minutes instead of by active users.

Another handy feature of the real-time Content report is that it breaks down your user data by device, so you can see which percentage of visitors are accessing your site on desktop, mobile, and tablet.

A guide to the standard reports in Google Analytics: Real-time reports

Events

This report is useful if you’ve used Google Analytics’ Events feature to create custom events for interactions on your site – such as button clicks, downloads, video plays, ad clicks, and so on. More detailed, non-real-time data on Events can be found in the Behavior section of your Google Analytics dashboard.

You can then use the real-time data from this report to track the top events on your site as they occur, or switch to viewing those activated in the past 30 minutes. Google sub-divides these into Event Categories and Event Actions, and as with the Content report, also shows you the breakdown of which devices your visitors are using when they trigger Events.

Conversions

The Conversions report will track the real-time completion of any Goals you’ve set up in Google Analytics.

Goals are different to Events in that they track the completion of an activity that contributes to the success of your business, rather than just an interaction with your site. This can include making a purchase, filling in a sales form, subscribing to a mailing list, and so on. More detailed, non-real-time data about Goal completions can be found in the Conversions section of GA.

As with the previous two reports, the Real-Time Conversions report breaks down which devices your visitors are using when they convert, and also allows you to view the data by active users or by Goal Hits in the last 30 minutes.

How can you use real-time reports in your campaigns?

Testing and troubleshooting campaign setup

One very handy quick use for real-time reports in Google Analytics is to test that everything is set up and working correctly. Unlike with non-real-time reports, there’s no wait for data to begin displaying, so you can immediately tell if things are in order, or if there’s an issue you need to troubleshoot.

Maybe you’ve just set up a new tracking feature in GA, such as a new Event or Goal, and you want to make sure you’re registering the form submissions properly. Or you might have created a new tracking link for your email marketing campaign, and you want to test that it’s showing up in the reports as expected.

You can test these out by having someone from your team carry out the Event or Goal that you want to track, or click the link in your campaign email, and then monitoring real-time reports to make sure that the activity shows up correctly.

Monitor campaigns unfolding in real-time

As we mentioned earlier, it’s not always a good idea to get too bogged down in watching the numbers on your site go up and down – often, the best insights from a campaign can be gleaned after the fact, as it’s not always clear what’s taking place in the moment.

However, there are some types of campaign that benefit from real-time monitoring and influencing. For example, say you’re running a social campaign, and you want to adjust your level of activity in real time based on audience interaction.

Real-time reports are the best way for you to monitor this, and will tell you useful things like when activity from a post or a tweet has dropped off (meaning it’s time to push out the next one), turn on paid promotion, or ask influencers to give your campaign a boost.

Capitalize on what’s trending

You may also need to react in the moment to something that isn’t part of a pre-planned campaign. For example, sudden activity on a specific piece of content or on one of your social channels might alert you to a big press hit, or that particular topic suddenly being in the news.

Checking up on real-time reports every so often can tip you off to when this is happening, and allow you to respond in an agile fashion. If it’s a trending piece of content, you could spotlight it on your front page, or knock out a quick update or refresh.

If it’s a big press hit, you can monitor where the traffic is coming to your website from and plan how to capitalize on the attention: are lots of people finding you on Facebook? Can you update your Facebook page or push out some paid social advertising? If people are searching for your brand all of a sudden, now might be a good time to check how you appear for those search terms and if necessary, do some on-the-spot reputation management.

How do you make use of real-time reports in Google Analytics? If you have any novel ways of integrating these into a marketing campaign, share them in the comments!

What people get wrong about keyword cannibalization

Columnist Patrick Stox suggests SEOs should reconsider how they think about keyword cannibalization and look at it as an opportunity, not an issue.

The post What people get wrong about keyword cannibalization appeared first on Search Engine Land.



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Google Analytics Features You Need to Pay Attention to in 2018 [PODCAST]

In this podcast episode, Charles Farina discusses the valuable features within Google Analytics that are worth taking advantage of this year.

The post Google Analytics Features You Need to Pay Attention to in 2018 [PODCAST] appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

Making website speed and performance part of your SEO routine

Monitoring webpage performance is key to avoiding setbacks when algorithms change. Contributor Bobby Lyons points out ways to adapt everyday SEO activities so a website will thrive regardless of algorithm updates.

The post Making website speed and performance part of your SEO routine appeared…



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