Nearly every business and entrepreneur today should establish their digital presence with a website. However, the website’s quality and your ability to improve it in meaningful ways are pivotal to ensuring its long-term success.
Having an optimized website requires so much more than an eye-catching design. The best websites offer valuable content, simple navigation, clear call-to-action buttons, and e-commerce functions.
When you use a website builder like Boxmode, creating an effective website is a painless and straightforward process. Whether you’re an experienced web designer or an emerging entrepreneur, our platform offers everything you need to design the best website for your business.
From there, it’s essential to measure how the website is performing once potential customers land on it. So, how do you know whether the website you built is working for your target audience and website visitors?
Creating Goals in Google Analytics
To truly measure and accurately track the success of your website, you’ll want to leverage Google’s powerful website analytics tool. Google Analytics offers users a range of features to evaluate what’s working (and what’s not) for your business website. Like the word “goal” indicates, a goal in Google Analytics helps measure the success of various objectives you set for your site. Start by considering what you want to achieve through your website.
There may be many purposes for building a website. Consider which one is the driving force behind yours. Do you want to generate sales for products or services? Are you looking to grow your email database? Is your objective to book consultation or discovery calls? Maybe it’s even a combination of each? Write down a list of all the actions you hope to see completed when a visitor lands on your website, and start evaluating from there.
Which Goals Are Available in Google Analytics?
In Google Analytics, there are many factors you can track. Creating goals is pretty straightforward; they fall into four overarching categories. Taking a deeper dive into each will unveil all the valuable possibilities for business owners.
Here are a few examples of goals in Google Analytics:
· Pages or Screens Per Session: This category of Google Analytics goals will keep track of the number of unique pages or screens a user explores during a session on your website. Consider how much of your website you want a new visitor to see. (Be realistic. Our attention spans are short, so it is highly unlikely someone will visit all of it.) For example, if you want your visitors to visit at least three of your pages on your website, Google Analytics will track the number of users who achieve this goal.
· Destination: Destination goals in Google Analytics will be triggered when a specific location on your website loads. This may be a particular page you want to direct traffic to, like your contact page, services page, or sales lead page. Again, think back to the initial objectives you set out for your website when it was initially created, and if any of those have evolved since.
Within a destination goal, website owners can lay out the path they want a user to follow to land on that specific destination. This is also called the funnel. Google Analytics will then leverage its funnel tracking to record how users flow throughout the specified path. This measure will be a great indication of how simple or complicated you’ve made it for users to reach the desired page. The simpler it is, the more success you’re likely to see. (Fewer clicks are better!)
Many organizations that sell products directly on their sites will set up Google Analytics ecommerce funnels to see how they can improve their navigation or call-to-action indicators to convert more sales. If you set up this type of tracking, be sure to review the Google Analytics Funnel Visualization report. This comprehensive report will become a favorite of yours because it gives detailed insight into your website’s effectiveness at moving users from point A to point B.
· Duration: For duration goals in Google Analytics, the platform will track the specified time an inbound visitor spends on your website before they go elsewhere on the internet. Consider what length of time would feel like an accomplishment for you. In theory, the longer a visitor spends on your website, the more engaged with it they are.
· Events: Events reflect a specific action taken on your site. (The important specifics on events are below.)
What is the difference between goals and events in Google Analytics?
Though an event is also a Google Analytics goal-tracking method, it focuses more on a specific activity or behavior that a user engages in. Examples of events include more detailed actions like playing one of your videos, clicking on specific buttons, or scrolling down to the bottom of a particular page.
When you’re looking to evaluate the success of your designated events, instead of heading to the Conversions section, you will have to review your reports within Behaviors. Though you probably won’t hit the maximums in either category, the Goals feature allows you to track 20 unique goals, while you’ll have the capability to track up to 500 activities in events.
How to Set Up Goals in Google Analytics
The Google Analytics tool is user-friendly and offers a plethora of learning resources for business owners of all levels. When in doubt, visit the Analytics Help section to watch video tutorials and learn how to create the best goals for your organization using step-by-step guides.
To set up goals, follow the steps below:
- Sign in to Google Analytics and select the correct website under “View.” (If you have multiple websites connected, you can track all of them from one master account.).
- Head to the Goals page to get started, and click on + NEW GOAL.
- From here, you can create a template goal (which offers standardized, pre-formatted options in a list you can choose from), custom goal, or Smart Goal (only available for certain accounts running Google Ads campaigns).
- Once complete, you will click “Verify this goal” to test out what you have created.
*Remember this will estimate based on information in your account but will not be accurate since Google Analytics cannot attribute actions and behavior retroactively.
- If you would like to make any additional changes, click the Edit link.
- Then, check the recording status. Goals will automatically begin recording as soon as you create them.
To review and track how your goals are performing, go to the Conversion section to pull up your reports. Once there, you can browse through a few detailed reports. Take a close look at the ones most relevant to you. These may include goals reports, multi-channel funnel reports, acquisition reports, and attribution reports.
Try to set up your goals at the onset if you can. Until then, the data you’ll have will be very limited. You can always adjust and deactivate your goals as needed. Unfortunately, there is no way for Google Analytics to retroactively tell you how traffic converted or how successful a funnel was when users previously visited your site. If you are launching a campaign with new site features, ensure you are ready on the analytics side as well before you go live.
How to Delete Goals in Google Analytics
Once a goal is set up, there is no real way to completely delete it. If you would like to pause a particular goal that’s no longer relevant, you can toggle the recording switch to the off position. With a Google Analytics account, you will have the ability to create 20 unique goals. Most business owners rarely hit this cap. If you do run out of goals, you can build a workaround by repurposing an existing (but unnecessary or obsolete) one. Though the old data will remain, it will begin recording the edited goal’s data once you switch it back on.
Are you ready to set up your website with an intuitive platform like Boxmode? If the answer is yes, also be prepared to measure its success once live. Understanding the fundamental requirements needed to measure your website’s effectiveness will already put you ahead of the game. With Google Analytics, you’ll get a true behind-the-scenes look at the movement of visitors on your site.
Implementing goals in Google Analytics is the best way to collect data from your website. These fall into the four categories of Pages per Session, Destination, Duration, and Events. You can track the first three through Conversions reporting, while Events (which are activity-based) you can evaluate from the Behavior section.
When you successfully set up goals and events specific to your website objectives, you will fully understand a potential customer’s journey and how to improve it where necessary.