Google’s Recent Changes to Google Analytics
Google announced recent changes to its Analytics platform. These significant new updates will help marketers learn more about their customers. Google recently said, “Today’s customers have incredibly high expectations for personalized and relevant experiences from brands. That’s why Google Analytics keeps working to measure the full customer journey in all its complexity.”
Google Analytics aims to help website owners by adding machine learning to their products and helping them track marketing impact across all channels. To that end, the following Google Analytics updates use some element of these goals.
User Level Standard Reports
The standard reports now give you data down to the individual user level. You can track user behavior instead of only session data as in past iterations. User-level reports shift the focus from sessions, where a single user could have multiple sessions a day, to one on individual behaviors. Now you can track users and sessions in the same dashboard.
To use this new feature, under the Admin menu, go to Property Settings and click on Enable Users in Reporting. Also, consider adding another feature like Cohort Analysis to analyze group behaviors.
User Explorer is a new feature that lets you target individual behavior down to the session level. Its innovative approach uses the data found in a user’s lifetime cookie history and shows lifetime metrics and individual user dimensions. With User Explorer, you can see past, present, and even predict future behaviors.
To get the full advantage of User Explorer, scale the individual metrics to a large group so you can find patterns across a wide array of Client ID numbers. By grouping similar users together, you can target your marketing strategies and messages better.
Consider the possibilities for both prospecting and remarketing. You can show patterns that lead visitors to your website, then use those patterns to help you find new customers with the same attributes. You can also find those customers with a high lifetime value and target them through remarketing and personalized messages.
In the past, Google Analytics had no way to create audience reports to analyze. You could always create audiences in AdWords, but now you can create and publish audiences in Google Analytics. This new feature will be useful for remarketing as it allows you to compare performance across your different segments.
For example, create an audience of customers who purchased several times in the last few months. Then use that information to compare with those visitors who use much of your content, but do not buy from you.
You can also name behaviors that matter most to your business and create audience reports to watch those behaviors over time. That information will help you learn more about the behavior and characteristics of your most valuable customers. Also, you can add these lists to AdWords to match your analysis to action. If you notice trends in groups based on those behaviors, you can easily enhance them or target the same audience group in AdWords.
Future Conversion Probability
Google Analytics will analyze your website’s historical data to find patterns in specified variables located in your high-value customers. It then identifies any recent site visitor who has a high probability of converting in the future. If you had Google Analytics Premium in the past or a paid media management platform, you could analyze at this level. Google now offers it in the standard Google Analytics platform.
With machine learning and predictive analytics, Google helps you find future customers. In addition, you can create audiences to analyze and to remarket.
To use this feature, look for the “Average % Conversion Probability” metric in your conversion reports. You can use it to show the quality of traffic your marketing activities are driving.
Google reported recently, “The advantages are clear: Marketers can create remarketing lists that target users who have a high likelihood to purchase and then reach those users through either advertising campaigns in AdWords and DoubleClick or site experiments in Optimize.”
Viewed together, the above enhancements show a clear decision on Google’s part. Their goal is to use machine learning and Artificial Intelligence to help users uncover a deeper understanding of individual visitors on their sites. Google’s use of predictive analytics will help marketers create more profitable campaigns that extend to a larger audience. With Google Analytics, you will have a much better understanding of your users at a granular level. You will also know what they are doing on your site so that you can create better user experiences for them.
Part of our job at KEO Marketing is staying ahead of the curve to help you do the same. Focusing on these changes to Google Analytics can have a big impact on your search marketing programs.
Are you ready for Google Analytics Consulting? Contact KEO Marketing today to schedule a free consultation to see how we can help you get the most of your analytics implementation.
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With more than 25 years of hands on marketing strategy and operations experience, Sheila Kloefkorn is dedicated to developing marketing strategies and plans that help clients succeed. Some of the world's largest brands have depended on Sheila for marketing programs that delivered tangible and substantial results. Specialties: B2B marketing, lead generation, lead nurturing, sales strategy, marketing strategy, competitive marketing strategy, social media, search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), mobile marketing, email marketing, website design, marketing plans.