When it comes to SaaS marketing, Google Analytics is a powerful web analytics tool used by more than 28 million website owners. The tool contains hundreds of dimensions and metrics that help website owners and marketers alike monitor the performance of websites.
Sadly, the vast number of analytics makes it relatively hard for some people to utilize this tool correctly. There’s just too much data to know what’s most important, where you can find it, and how to interpret it.
But, amid all this confusion, there is a way to make your data easier to track and interpret; Google Analytics dashboards. Google Analytics dashboards simply refer to a collection of widgets that help you visualize your analytics. You can create custom dashboards from scratch, use the premade options on Google Analytics, or import shared Google Analytics dashboards made by other webmasters.
In today’s article, we’ll go through four essential Google Analytics dashboards that you need to know about. Let’s get started:
Page timing dashboard
The page timing dashboard lets you visualize critical data related to the pages on your website. It shows metrics like the average page load time, page views, and bounce rate.
Use this dashboard to identify pages recording poor performance. For example, you can look at the pages with the highest loading times then audit them to identify the source of the problem. Remember, high page load times negatively affect the user experience on your site.
Once you’ve identified the sources of your problem, you can make the necessary adjustments. For instance, if the problem is that there are too many images on your page, then you might want to reduce their number. Or you could optimize your images by changing them into the proper format or by changing their dimensions. You could also compress the images and eliminate unnecessary metadata.
The point is, those metrics on the dashboard can help you identify your course of action to ensure better page loading times.
Metrics like the bounce rate can also help you identify potential issues with some of your pages. For example, if a particular page has an unusually high bounce rate, scan it for issues like poor page load times, low-quality content, misleading meta descriptions or title tags, etc.
The page timing dashboard also allows you to put two metrics against each other. For example, you can look at the average page load times against your bounce rate. That can help you determine whether there’s a correlation between your site speed and the bounce rate.
Site performance dashboard
The site performance dashboard provides all the key metrics you need to gauge the performance of your website. The dashboard shows:
- Average page load times
- Average server response
- Mobile page load time
- Page load times by browser
- Load times of specific pages
- Domain lookup by country
- Server response time by country.
You can also access caching information on page load times and server response times of new and returning visitors.
The site performance dashboard can inform critical decisions like choosing a data center to host your website. For example, if your website is getting tons of traffic from a particular country, you may want to choose a nearby data center or CDN to deliver a great experience to those users.
You can also look at the page load time and sessions by browser widget to ensure your website is optimized for all browsers, especially those bringing the most traffic.
If you know about SaaS marketing, you know how critical good website performance is to converting leads. Free trials, for instance, are key components in SaaS marketing. After all, it’s easier to convert cold traffic when you offer something for free. But if the SaaS business’ website isn’t performing as it should, how else can leads sign up for this free offer and (hopefully) become paying customers?
That’s not to say only SaaS businesses should have a good website performance. In this increasingly digital world, websites are the digital face of the business. If a business website isn’t performing the way it should, the business should expect negative effects on its reputation.
Spam traffic detection dashboard
The spam traffic detection dashboard shows potential spam traffic in your analytics. It essentially helps you get an accurate overview of your website’s traffic. This insight, in turn, allows you to make informed decisions that will help you attract traffic from the right sources.
This dashboard allows you to monitor your site’s bounce rate, number of sessions, and traffic source widgets to identify potential spam traffic.
For example, if you notice a sudden spike of direct traffic coupled with an insanely high bounce rate (98%+) and a high percentage of new sessions, chances are you’re looking at spam bot traffic.
Content analysis dashboard
The content analysis dashboard demonstrates how your content is performing. It tells you which pieces of content are underperforming or overperforming. That effectively allows you to adjust your content strategy and ensure it’s meeting the needs of your target audience.
The content analysis dashboard shows pageviews and unique pageviews by page title, average bounce rate and time on page by page title, exits and pageviews by page, visits and percentage of new visits per landing page, pageviews by territory or country, and pageviews by city.
Widgets like the average page on time and bounce rate by page title can help you tell which content needs an update or complete overhaul. Similarly, you can look at the exits by page to identify the posts that cause most visitors to exit your site. That should help you seal some leaks in your content marketing funnel.
Pageviews by territory, country, or city can show potential business opportunities in other areas. For example, if one of your sales pages is getting decent traffic from a particular location, you may want to consult your sales team so they can target leads from that location. They can just use an email finder software to locate the relevant email addresses and send cold emails.
When it comes to marketing for SaaS, it’s so easy to get lost in the sea of data that Google Analytics throws at you. However, once you know which dimensions and metrics you need and get the right dashboards to present that data, everything else gets easier. You will unleash the full power of Google Analytics, which will help you scale your website and business at large.
In this article, I shared six key Google Analytics dashboards that every marketer should be using. You have the page timing dashboard, eCommerce dashboard, personal blogger dashboard, site performance dashboard, spam traffic detection dashboard, and content analysis dashboard.
Just think about your needs, and pick the appropriate dashboard. You can use multiple dashboards at the same time, too. For example, if you have an online store, you will find both the eCommerce and site performance dashboards very useful.