In this episode, Tyler and Susan opine on their forbidden drinks of choice and then dive into the nitty-gritty details of Google Analytics emailed monthly snapshot reports.
Susan Barry of Hive Marketing has a burning question that she needs answered: “What do those snapshot email reports from Google Analytics even mean?”
By reviewing her Monthly Performance report in Google Analytics, Tyler Jacobson of Omnifonic Digital Marketing is able to concisely break down why month-over-month reporting can sometimes present a misleading picture. While these reports can offer valuable statistics such as sessions, users, and conversion rates, the data is fairly limited in its scope. Instead, each email should be treated like an alert to check on the deeper details as to how your site is performing. When gleaning these emails you will also need to take into account several factors such as seasonality or underperforming campaigns. This will require some research on your end, and the following free tools and resources will help you identify any issues that your site might be having:
Free Tools & Resources for Businesses using Google Analytics
- First, if you have not done so already, set up a Google Analytics account as this will allow you to analyze in fine detail the traffic and visitors to your site. Unsure how to do set up Google Analytics? No sweat, we have you covered with our guide The right way to set up Google Analytics.
- Google Data Studio is a free interactive dashboard that pulls together data from over 150 sources, including Google Analytics, into easy-to-read reports using data visualization.
- Google Search Console is another free service offered by Google that lets you find out a great wealth of information about how Google sees your site. This includes measuring your sites search traffic, discovering high traffic queries/pages on your site, and various other insights on how to improve your site’s visibility and presence in Search Engine Results Pages (SERP)
- Be sure to subscribe and keep updated on SEO Blogs such as SEMRush, Ahrefs, and Search Engine Journal. A great SEO starting point would be one of our gems: What is SEO? A philosophical take.
- Update Blog Posts to increase traffic and leads while ensuring that you are not getting rid of the queries and keywords that are still effective like in Susan’s Hive Marketing DBR
Don’t have the time to set up Google Analytics for monthly snapshot reports, but you know that you’re ready to take your site and your business to the next level? Schedule a FREE Consultation
[Intro] This is the Omnicast Sales and Marketing Podcast for leaders that are ready to grow their businesses. With your hosts, Tyler Jacobson and Susan Barry.
[Tyler] Welcome to the Omnicast Sales and Marketing Podcast. I’m Tyler Jacobson of Omnifonic Digital Marketing in Denver, Colorado. And my forbidden drink of choice is Hawaiian Punch.
[Susan] And I am Susan Barry from Hive Marketing in Atlanta, Georgia. My forbidden drink of choice is any type of caffeine after lunch, but especially coffee. I can’t drink it.
[Tyler] So. So what is the. I think I would know what the effect is because you are over the age of 30, but. Well, it just is going to keep you up all night, right? Yes.
[Susan] I’ll wake a bit of all that I like to do with what is happening. I know I can drink coffee all day long. My father wakes up in the middle of the night and has a cup of coffee. Not me, though.
[Tyler] No, But I know I’m pretty bad about it. And then, like, you know, I’m also an idiot. So what ends up happening is. I’ll drink coffee all day and then later I’ll be like, man, I’ve been having such a hard time sleeping and Sarah will ll be like, well you drank two pots of coffee. Maybe that has something to do with it. You might be right, honey, thank you. Hawaiian Punch, Not that you asked, by the way, about who I am. You know, I feel like, you know, lots of sugar and stuff like that. But my buddy Evan believes that there is red dye in there that triggers my ADHD and turns me into a little bit of an obnoxious freak. Now, this premise is a couple of decades old, and I don’t know if that really applies to me at this age, but I don’t know that I want to test it to be what you should test it.
[Susan] I think you should test it for our next recording session. See how it would play out.
[Tyler] So, like an hour beforehand, right where I’m really getting that spike.
[Susan] Right. Or do shots the whole time of Hawaiian Punch. What do you think?
[Tyler] I like it. I like it. So I just know you. Go ahead.
[Susan] That’s another forbidden, is shots of Jägermeister. It’s something that I love so very, very much. I love it. But clearly I cannot have shots of Jagermeister, but especially when I want them, which is like at nine a.m., 11:00 a.m., et cetera, et cetera.
[Tyler] So I think, yes, I’ll do the Hawaiian Punch and you should do the Jägermeister and then we’ll do an episode.
[Susan] Fantastic. Sounds like a terrible time for everyone listening.
[Tyler] It really does. So I was just we just launched season two and I have no idea what all of this is. This one is gonna show up and maybe it’ll be episode two. Who knows? But I just listened to episode one, as did you, because you texted me and it was a pretty good episode. One of the things that I have learned between that recording in February and now, my brother made me listen to a different podcast and the guy’s way of writing his affirmation. Was to ask himself questions that allow for positive bias. And so I just want to tack that on. So when we were talking about, I am a confident person. Right. That’s one of the affirmations that maybe you give yourself. The way that you do this is you say, why am I a confident person? Why am I the best salesperson? In my industry, you ask those things that make you have to justify that, you know, that confirmation.
[Susan] So that’s an interesting idea. Have you tried any on yourself?
[Tyler] I can’t really. Yeah, I’ve tried. And it hasn’t been any really big questions. By the way. I thought the guy was an entire douche bag. But this was the one really great piece of advice. Yeah. Yeah. So I haven’t. I’ve had a couple of nothing ritualistic, nothing that I’m committed to asking myself every day why I’m X, Y, Z. But as it comes up, I’ve used that as a way to cause it because it removes that ability for you to doubt yourself. And really you just have to come up with justifications as to why you are this thing instead of why aren’t you to this thing.
[Susan] Yeah, I know. I like it. I think I’m in it. I mean, I try to think about it. One of my personal goals/affirmations and I write down every day as I am patient because I am the opposite of patient, but I need to work on it. So I’m really interested now to try to pose that question myself. Why am I a patient or why am I x exceptionally patient? Something like that.
[Tyler] Why don’t you just hurry up and answer it. Come on.
[Susan] My answer is because I have not killed you yet. And you know, I’ve had plenty of reason and plenty of opportunities.
[Tyler] I sort of love that I can be. Your exercise in patients.
[Susan] Yes. Yes. I’m practicing even as we speak. Let me get to the afternoon coffee here.
[Tyler] Oh, you’re going to be up until 4:00 am!
[Susan] Right, it’s bad. Yeah.
[Tyler] So, what should we talk about, Susan?
[Susan] Well, I think today I am really interested in getting some insight and advice from you on something that I know you are an expert on, and I am no longer in the loop and clued into what this is. So I received in my email today, a report from the almighty Google Analytics about my July Snapshot. And, you know, I used to pay very close attention to Google Analytics, not always for my Website, but for several clients Websites. So I felt like I knew what I was looking at and what was happening. And now when I look at it, I feel lost and confused. So I’m hoping you can help me and help me understand what it is I’ve got going on here.
[Tyler] OK. So this e-mail and I’ve got about six or seven of them from various clients, and I unsubscribe from a bunch of them today. Does it show? Because so let’s let’s kind of lay this out. It says, hey, congratulations. Hive marketing, you’ve got eighty six clicks in search or something like that, Right?
[Susan] Yeah, this one says, in July you had one hundred eighty one users visit your Website.parentheses-Google Analytics.
[Tyler] Excellent. So does it tell you a plus or minus figure over June or over July of the previous year?
[Susan] It says down sixty-three point six percent. But, I don’t know how that compares to the previous month. So, yeah, it tells me that my performance is significantly down to last month.
[Tyler] OK. So that might be important. One of the things that I hate about month over month reporting, especially when you’re not campaigning and I don’t know if you’re running any campaigns right now or if you have any organic campaigns that you’re doing. But one of the things that I hate about this month over month reporting is that it doesn’t take seasonality into account. So you might have less traffic in July every year because maybe people are on vacation or hotels are used to having a lot of summertime business. And so they don’t have they’re not out there looking for solutions to why, you know, how do we fill this thing up. So when you’re looking at that, I would say that would be the first thing. Go back in your analytics and see if there is traditionally a drop in July. I don’t know that it’s necessarily helpful. Now, if you’re running a campaign and you know that you should be driving more and more and more, visit your then that might signal that things aren’t necessarily going the way you needed to go.
[Susan] You know what I just realized as you were after you asked me that question, I did post, I loathe to call it a campaign, but I did post a new service out on LinkedIn in the month of June, that may have driven some additional traffic that month. So then looking at July could be down comparatively.
[Tyler] OK. So did you do any sort of research or reporting on the effects of posting that linked an article?
[Susan] Not on the effects of that to my Website. I definitely looked at my analytics for my LinkedIn internal campaign that I did, but I did look at how it drove traffic to my site at all.
[Tyler] So I think if there’s any I mean, this episode could be really quick if you want it to be. I think I think the function of that email could be, hey, you should investigate the rest of your analytics and start asking questions about, you know, hey, why did my traffic drop off 63 percent? Is it because I got a bunch of spam traffic and then that traffic stopped? And I have an article that did exceptionally well through a social media channel that started is my SEO tanking? You know, there’s all sorts of questions that you can ask. I don’t think that email itself, I that’s that’s probably a feel good email at the end of the day. Oh, look, things are happening with my business, but I just have to go beyond that. It should be a signal that something else is happening. So before I ask that question, did you recognize that it said that things are down 63 percent month over month?
[Susan] No, not until you asked me.
[Tyler] Yeah. So, yeah. So I would say that the value of that e-mail is fairly limited. Ideally, what you would be doing is you would have set up some sort of dashboard. And I like Google Data Studio. So I know that we said that we were gonna offer some tools. That’s a tool that I really like. It’s free and it allows you to take all of the myriad of metrics from Google Analytics and decide, hey, I just want to see what. I just want this metric reported to me or this metric. So I use Google Data Studio and I will put in like, OK, how many visitors do I get entirely? How many sessions were there, how many pages, procession, what’s the bounce rate and then which channels brought my traffic search display, direct traffic referrals, things like that. And I try and look at it once a month. And then the other thing I look at is top pages as well, top landing pages and top pages. So I know what content of mine is actually performing.
[Susan] OK. So that leads me to another question. So when I was clicking around in Google Analytics today, I discovered that there is a blog post of mine that is consistently the second top performing page on my Website. And Tyler, this is not any life changing blog post. I mean, it’s good, You know, I think obviously it’s brilliant, but it’s not like something that is still topical or controversial or do you know what I mean? It’s just kind of a day in, day out sort of an article. So why do you think that would be?
[Tyler] Do you mind sharing what that topic is?
[Susan] It’s about an hotel specific meeting called DBR, which stands for Daily Business Review. So it’s about a daily business review by a lack of a better explanation. I mean, it’s very like inside baseball for hotels and not super interesting to the bigger world.
[Tyler] So why might that be ranking? So, I think that the first thing that you would want to do is see what channels are driving traffic to that blog post. It’s probably going to end up being search. I would assume without looking at anything, we’re going to say that it’s search. You can then copy that URL , hive-marketing.com/blog/whatever the title is. Copy that whole, URL. Go into Google Search Console, make sure that you’ve claimed your Google search console. Go in there and you can put in that you are all and you can see which queries, what people are typing into Google to actually get to that page. Now I’m going to tell you so. So you know that my wife and I used to own a skin care brand called Sweet Georgia Sugar. We had a blog post on there, Sarah just wrote a blog post, this was not intentional and honestly, this is the way a lot of SEO works. So I’m giving you a little little little bit of secret information here. She wrote a blog post without a whole lot of direction that was about using coconut oil to extend the length of your eyelashes.
[Susan]I remember that one and I do that!
[Tyler] Does it work? And we outranked Pinterest for coconut eyelashes. There is a ridiculous amount of volume around that idea. Coconut oil, eyelashes, ridiculous. It drove over 80 percent of the visits to our Website. And we were again. We were number one or number two on Google for a year without any maintenance on that page. There was an idea in that blog post. And again, we know what that idea was. It was coconut oil eyelashes, but there was enough volume around an idea in that blog post to really push it up through the ranks of Google. And there wasn’t there wasn’t enough competition to keep us down. And she wrote a good piece. So that’s what you want to find out. You want to find out what about that blog post is actually driving that traffic? And then once you found that out. Look at it and say, can I update this to actually dial in on that topic and rank even better or even more strongly? Can I do this to where it’s a 2020 piece rather than just some timeless piece? Right. Like, how can I make this more relevant and win more clicks and search? Because you’re saying that it sounds like a lot of inside baseball, the people who are visiting that page are probably very likely your ideal client. So now you might want to think about doing a remarketing campaign to the people coming to that blog. Or you might think about. Well, can I enhancers. Can I offer some sort of downloadable content in exchange for their lead information? You know, maybe it’s a worksheet on how to conduct one of those meetings. Something like that.
[Susan] That’s a really good idea. OK.
[Tyler] And so,I had a client at another one, I mean to cut you off. I’m so sorry. But exercise your patients. Why are you so patient with Tyler? So I had a client at another agency that I worked out and they needed to increase leads. And they had a piece that was working really well a blog content piece that was working really well. And what we did was we took that piece and we just turned it into a PDF and turned it into a lead magnet. And then all of a sudden their leads increase 300 percent.
[Susan] Yeah, for sure. Well, and just honestly, just the idea of updating that post for pandemic times is a huge one because that practice would be different. And I have a lot of ideas for what they could do. So if people are getting driven there already anyway, might as well try a new, you know, updated version.
[Tyler] Right. So but again, before you do that, don’t just guess at it. Look at that Google search console and let’s find those queries, those keywords that it’s winning on. Because what you don’t want to do is remove those from it.
[Tyler] And that whole idea. And if you don’t know why it’s receiving hits, you could easily screw up the SEO on it and have it be valueless, not valueless. But, you know, I mean.
[Susan] Yeah, I know. That’s really helpful. OK, one more question about this.
[Tyler] You only get one more.
[Susan] Like 10 years ago, I think was the last time I spent a lot of time in Google Analytics. That should tell you. Maybe eight years ago. And I remember that one of the things like this. I’m thinking of a particular client. One of the things we spent an enormous amount of time digging into was referral traffic. Where her referral traffic was coming from so that she would know whether to spend more time on LinkedIn or Facebook or, you know, wherever she was syndicating her content.
[Tyler] Mm hmm.
[Susan] I can’t find that anywhere. Does that not exist anymore? Or am I just not looking in the right place?
[Tyler] It totally exists. So you have to go again. You have to go back into Google Analytics, and I want you on the left hand side. And for those of you listening at home, you know, take note on the left hand side, you’re going to see acquisition, click on acquisition, then click on all traffic and then click on channels. You will see referrals show up several times. What was that?
[Susan] And I messed that up and looking in the right place because that obviously sounds like it makes complete and total sense. But it also sounds like what I would have done. But maybe not.
[Tyler] there’s further to go here.
[Susan] OK.So, acquisition, all traffic
[Tyler] Channels, don’t click on referrals. Click on or click on channels. If the top thing under that.
[Susan] Yes, sorry, I accidently clicked the wrong button. OK, there we go. All right. So I’m in Google Analytics. I’ve clicked on acquisition. I’ve expanded the menu under all traffic and clicked on channels and now what should I do?
[Tyler] Click on the word referral.
[Susan] Ah ha, look at that!
[Tyler] Now, this is going to be one of the sources of bullshit in your analytics. This is where you see a lot of spam and a lot of garbage, unfortunately. So that refer that you see from top ten SEO.org or whatever. That’s garbage. If you don’t know what it is, it’s worth investigating because it might actually be a good referral source. One way to get rid of garbage referral sources, though, is look at your bounce rate. So if the bounce rate is 100 percent, it’s almost certainly garbage. And a bounce means that somebody saw one page of your site and then left.
[Susan] Gotcha. It’s interesting because the first two sites that are listed here, both ones recognize one as 100 percent legitimate. The other one is a business that used to be a client and is no longer, the business used to be owned by my sister and is no longer. So it’s interesting that that would be referring traffic to me. I don’t even know why I would be on their site.
[Tyler] Well, you can click on that in the will actually show you the page that’s referring traffic to you.
[Susan] OK. Let’s do that again.
[Tyler] And you can start getting a little more dialed in here and say, ah, that’s
[Susan] OK. Yep. All right. That makes sense. I see it so funny.
[Tyler] Yeah. So it’s still there and it can still be a really valuable source of information. But again, this is where you’re going to find a lot of spam and a lot of crap. Don’t take it all as gospel heard often.
[Susan] Well, thank you so much for giving me a primer on my Google Analytics report that I received today. Where should I go to learn more about this?
[Tyler] I would go to omni phonic dot com and then fill out a consultation.
[Susan] OK. Fantastic
[Tyler] Yeah. And then just let Omnifonic do your marketing. We do in our blog, We have, so if you haven’t set up Google, we actually have a guide to how we set it up as a marketing agency so that any business can go in there and they can set up their Google analytics like a marketing agency wouldn’t get some of the insights that we would get. There are probably a lot of good tutorials out there. So I would do a Google search for, you know, using Google Analytics or Google Analytics tutorial or things like that. There’s just so many cool things that you can find out about your business when you’re able to understand that platform a little bit better.
[Susan] Gotcha. Awesome. Well, thank you so much. I appreciate it.
[Tyler] All right. Thanks, Susan. And I’ll see you on the next episode.
[Outro] Thank you for listening to the Omnicast Sales and Marketing Podcast. Be sure to subscribe rate and review on your favorite podcast platform. Find show notes, leave comments or connect with Tyler and Susan at Omnicast podcast.com.