For years, when I headed to Google analytics to find an answer, I was inevitably caught up by all the data, and felt confused about the answer. 

Does this confusion sound familiar ? 

It doesn't have to be that way, and hopefully since then I found great advice to keep my mind clear.

The fact is, with web analytics, if you don't know in advance what you looking for, you will just die in front of your screen, overwhelmed with data.

Spare yourself a headache, with these 9 Google Analytics custom reports, and the answers that go with it. You'll gain valuable insights about your shoppers' behavior.

Just follow the links below to install these analytics reports one by one. 

You may want to rearrange them in a folder. Since custom reports are made to make your life easier and your analysis more focused, it's best not to have 20 reports in the section.

In this post, you will learn this about your audience :

  • Where do people come from ? What channels, sources, devices, location ? What are the respective differences in performances ? Get the Google Analytics Custom Report
  • How did they find us in search engines ? Get the Google Analytics Report
  • What page did they land on ? What are the pages leading to most/least transactions and revenue ? Get the Report
  • Who are the visitors ? What's their gender and age ? Who is our best/worst buyer ? Is the traffic acquisition targeting our best buyers ? Get the Report
  • What do people want ? Get the Report
  • Do they experience bugs or troubles while surfing our site ? Get the Report
  • What are the bestselling products ? The products with upselling potential ? Get the Report 
  • What pages are a dead-end for visitors ? Get the Report
  • How many visits need people before buying ? Get the Report

 

Before we get started, I warmly recommend you the Table Booster Chrome extension. Your eyes will say thanks, since it will add nice colors and bars to these dull rows of numbers. You can find it here.
 

 GA custom reports

 

These custom reports follow roughly the way Google analytics present its predefined reports: Acquisition, Behavior, and Conversions. 
(You may remember this with "ABC")

 

Note : Throughout this blog post, Conversions are related to e-commerce. So the reports will mention transactions, revenue per user, and revenue. For each report, conversions and revenue are always present, to provide a performance assessment.

 

If your site is all about lead generation, most of the reports are still useful, but I will probably write another specific blog post soon.

 

That said, let's go now, you have 25 minutes, no more !

 

0' to 6' minutes 

Where do your shoppers come from ? 

 

 

To get started, let's focus first on traffic acquisition.

 

 google analytics custom report channel

 

This channel report gives you a quick clear ideas. Here is what you can note for later :

  • Best channel for conversion rate / revenue per user => here it's paid search
  • Share of direct traffic : here it's the 2nd channel, it will require our attention, but not for a quick 25' analysis
  • Performance of email channel : it's usually very good.

The source/medium channel goes a little more in detail :

 google analytics custom report source

 

Not much to say here, except noticing the terrible performance of referral traffic, and that the "news" emails have the greatest revenue per user.

 

More interesting is the device report :

 GA devices

 

Despite the fact that 30% of the total traffic is accountable to smartphones, it has a mere 7% in revenue.

Tablets are usually doing better, but still, it is far from the desktop performance.

 

Finally, have a look at the location tab :

 google analytics reports geolocation

 

With this first report, you may now respond to these questions:

  • What are is the most used channels? What sources?
  • What devices are the most prominent? 
  • What country, what state, what city shows a demonstration of interest?

 

These reports are like a black box, showing you only the entry points, and the end results (revenue per user and conversion rates).

 

Note : There are other tabs in the reports allowing you to display more metrics (bounce rates and engagement metrics) if you wish to dig deeper.

 


6' to 8'

How do people find you on Google ? 

 

What you want to know here is :

  • What organic keywords are driving most of the revenue
  • Are people using more branded keywords or non-branded (aka 'generic')
  • What keywords have a great conversion rate
  • For keywords with a terrible conversion rate, what is the landing page associated ?

 google analytics SEO report

In the report above, you can see that lots of the revenue is generated by the first keyword. 

 

An area of potential would be the 2nd keyword, which generates also lots of traffic, but with a conversion rate 6x inferior ! What's the landing page for this keyword ? Is the bounce rate bad ? If yes, changing this page is a top priority. You can do this through A/B testing.

 

 

8' to 10'

Where do people land on your site ? 

 

What you want to get from this report is :

  • Which are the landing pages with a high traffic and a low bounce rate ? These are your best performers, and by re-reading its content, it actually tells what's working with your audience.
  • Which are the landing pages with a high traffic and a high bounce rate (usually bad, potential areas of improvement)
  • Is there a correlation between bounce rate and Ecommerce conversion rate ? This may tell you if bounce rate is a relevant metric for you.

 google analytics report CRO

 

On the example above, there are a few well performing pages, like pages #1, #4 and #8 : bounce rate ok, good conversion rates, and generating a lot of revenues.

And there is a page like #3, which receives a lot of traffic, has a high bounce rate and a terrible conversion rate.

 

 

10' to 13'

Demographics : Who are your visitors ?

 

The gender report is quite straightforward :

 google analytics reports gender

 

Above, you can see that female visitors are more numerous, but the average male visitor spends 28% more. 

 

Let's narrow down. Here is the age range for female visitors : 

 google analytics reports demographics

 

The older the shoppers, the greater is the conversion rate ! And it's almost the case with the revenue per user. 

 

So here, while the 25-34 are more numerous, there is a great potential in acquiring visitors of 35-54+.

 

 

Takeaways from the demographics reports :

  • You know which gender and age range generate the most revenue per user
  • Did you set the right targets in your acquisition strategy ?

 

13' to 14' 

What do people want ? 

 

What you want to get from this GA report is :

  • What do people look for on your site
    • Look for trends : Are the requests related to the same topic ?
  • What keywords make people leave the site after a search ? Maybe you need to create a page that answer a specific user request.
  • Are some requests totally unrelated to what your site offers ? It could be a sign of incorrectly targeted traffic.

 

 google analytics reports site search

 

 

14' to 18' 

Do people have a homogeneous user experience across all devices / browsers / OS ? 

 

This report is so practical to identify any long-lasting bug. Any annoying bug will left its footprint, with a higher bounce rate and a lower conversion rate.

 

This report names "Bugs by..." shows entrances and bounce rates : 

  • by devices
  • by resolutions
  • by OS
  • by browsers

 

 

Why differentiate by OS, browsers and devices ? Because there is some overlapping. 

 

For example, Safari works on Mac (computers) and on iOS (mobiles). Same for Chrome. iOS works on mobiles, and tablets.

 

With this report, you will identify WHERE you have to fix bugs. You will have to do your own research to find what the bugs are.

 

Note : Do not hesitate to click on items to segment down. For instance, click on a tablet, you'll see all browsers which ran on tablets.

 

 google analytics device report

 

Based on the following google analytics reports, it is clear that the site above is not effective at all for smartphone users. The bounce rate is 2x bigger than desktop, and the conversion rate is almost 6x smaller.

 

 

This is confirmed when looking at Chrome's and Safari's performances, compared to Firefox and IE, which are less used on mobiles.

 

 google analytics segment by browser

 

 

Looking at OS shows definitely that Macs do not have a worse conversion rate, it's even better. 

 

So you can't complain about Safari. The whole mobile design of this website has problems, since both Androids and iOS devices have terrible performances.

 

 google analytics finding bugs

 

18' to 21' 

What products generate the most revenue ?

 

Beside this question, you may use the average quantity to create upselling offers for products which tend to sell more quantities.

 

 google analytics ecommerce

 

21' to 24' 

Which high-traffic pages make people leave the site ?

 

Pages with a high exit rate need some deeper analysis with an on-site survey, and maybe a change in the copy, or a redesign :

 

 google analytics course exit rate

 

24' to 25' 

How many visits need people before buying ?

 

 google analytics training

 

58% of transactions were made by people coming for the first time on this website. 

 

This might seems a lot, but this also means that 42% of buyers do NOT buy on their first visit. Hence, taking care our first time visitors to make them coming back later is crucial to this business.

 

Conclusion

I hope you've gathered great insights about your visitors and their shopping behavior. 

In 25 minutes, you've more than scratched the surface thanks to these custom reports. But you probably feel the need to take more time to deepen the analysis... and you are right to !

Try to make a habit of defining your questions clearly, before heading to Google Analytics reports. At best, you can imagine the ideal report ahead. This way, you will get answers and won't feel overwhelmed with unusable data. 

If you need further help with your analytics, you can either ask in the comments, or send me a message here.

 

What are the reports you loved ? What vital information is missing ? 

I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

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