Throughout May, Google rolled out some very useful updates to Google Analytics. These changes are aimed at helping you improve your website on both the front and back ends, giving your users a better, more targeted content experience while improving your conversions and giving you an idea of what your visitors want and what makes them happiest. As Google implements more changes like this, they will also be discontinuing the Google Website Optimizer as its functions will eventually all be a part of the improved Google Analytics.
Addition of Content Experiments
First off, you can now execute content experiments in the content section, which will allow you to perform goal-conversion tests on different versions of the same page. Basically, it helps you determine which version of a page best fulfills the goal that you are aiming for. This new feature allows you to test up to 6 variations of the same page.
One example which is perfect for this use would be an e-commerce store. Let’s say you have a website that sells shoes, and you have 4 different design options for the page that sells sneakers. With content experiments, you can test which of those designs converts best for your goal of sneaker sales at one time. This is much more efficient than manually switching out each design for a set period of time to gather results.
Easier Custom Dashboards
Another cool addition is the new Google Analytics Easy Dashboard Library. With this, you can create custom dashboards without having to deal with a crazy amount of code. If you’ve been yearning for custom-tailored data, for example a line graph that displays visitors, pages/visit, and the % of new visits all in one, then this feature is for you. Here is an example of the code you would need to use to get the graph below:
Track Social Activities and Backlinks
Last but not least, you can now track your backlinks right in Google Analytics. All of your site’s backlinks, trackbacks, and links from social sites can be viewed in one area. Just go to the Traffic Sources tab, click on Social Sources, and select Activity Stream. You can view either “Conversations” or “Events.” How convenient to have one place that will show you who linked to your site, from where, and when it happened!
This is a great feature because now you can easily see which social sites are giving you the most links and traffic, and in what form they are providing those links. For example, you can see that someone bookmarked your page on Delicious, who bookmarked it, and when it was bookmarked. This way, you can learn which content gets shared on social sites, how many visits you get from those shares, and which of those shares causes the best conversions. This helps you to plan out better content that you know will get shared and convert. The image below shows a comparison between visits overall and visits from social sites:
Take the time to learn and utilize these tools. All of these updates are meant to help you optimize your site, creating an efficient system that lets you figure out exactly what your users want so you can supply that and get better results every single time. Having a website that performs better doesn’t just make your customers happy – it makes your business successful, and that’s why we’re all here! Check out another post we have regarding adding users to Google Analytics, and let us know if this article helped you out in the comments!