8 Google Analytics Reports That Show How Your Blog is Really Performing

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8 Google Analytics Reports That Show How Your Blog is Really Performing

8 Google Analytics Reports That Show How Your Blog is Really Performing.

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By Neil Patel

real time

When you log into Google Analytics, what do you look at?

Chances are you see something like the image above that shows you how many people are currently on your blog.

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Well, that was easy to guess because that’s the report Google Analytics gives you once you log in. ?

But which reports do you look at on a regular basis?

I bet you look at two main reports…

The “Audience Overview” report and the “Acquisition Overview” report.

audience overview

Sure, every once in a while, you may dive into your top pages or the specific organic keywords that drive your traffic. But even if you do that, what are you actually doing with the data?

Nothing, right?

Don’t beat yourself up over it because most content marketers just look at reports and numbers and do little to nothing with the data.

If you want to figure out how to grow your blog and, more importantly, your revenue from your blog, there are 7 reports that you need to start looking at on a regular basis.

Here they are and here is how you use them…

Report #1: Cohort Analysis

What do you think is easier to accomplish… get new visitors to your blog or getting your visitors to come back?

It’s easier to get people to come back to your blog, yet everyone focuses on new visitors.

I bet less than 99% of your blog readers turn into customers or revenue, so why not focus on getting those people back and eventually converting them?

Before we get into how to get people back to your blog, let’s look at how many people are returning to your blog.

Within the Google Analytics navigation, click on “Audience” and then “Cohort Analysis”.

Once you land on that report, you’ll see a graph that looks similar to this:

cohort graph

Under the “Cohort Size” drop-down menu, select “by week”. Under “Date Range”, select “Last 12 weeks”.

Once the data loads, you’ll see a table that looks something like this:

cohort table

What this table shows is the percentage of your visitors that come back each week.

On the very left it will always show 100%. Then in the columns to the right, you’ll see week 1, week 2, week 3, etc.

This shows the percentage of people who come back to your blog each and every week after their first visit.

For example, if this week you had 100 people visit your blog and in the week 1 column, it shows 17%. That means of the initial 100 people, 17 came back. Under week 2 if you see 8%, that means of the initial 100 people, 8 people came back in week 2.

Naturally, this number will keep getting smaller, but the goal is to get people back as often as possible. That increases trust, social shares, potential people linking to you, and it even increases the odds that the visitor will convert into a customer.

number of visits

The average blog reader needs to come back 3.15 times before they turn into a customer. That means that you need to retain readers.

Just think of it this way: If you get thousands of new people to your blog each and every single day but none of them ever come back, what do you think is going to happen to your sales?

Chances are, not much.

You need to look at your Cohort Report and continually try to improve the numbers and get people coming back.

So the real question is, how do you get people to come back?

There are 2 simple ways you can do this:

  1. Start collecting emails – through free tools like Hello Bar, you can turn your blog readers into email subscribers. Then as you publish more content, you can send an email blast and get people back to your blog.
  2. Push notifications – by using tools like Subscribers, people can subscribe to your blog through their browser. Then every time you release a new blog post, you can send out a push and people will come back to your blog.

These 2 strategies are simple and they work. Just look at how many people I continually get back to my blog through emails and push notifications.

repeat visits

Report #2: Benchmarking

Ever wonder how you are doing compared to your competition?

Sure, you can use tools like Ubersuggest, type in your competitors URL, and see all of the search terms they are generating traffic from.

ubersuggest neil patel

But what if you want more? Such as knowing what percentage of traffic your competitors are getting from each channel. What’s your bounce rate, average session duration, or even pageviews per channel?

bench marketing

Within Google Analytics navigation, click on “Audiences” then “Benchmarking” then “Channels”.

Once you do that, you’ll see a report that looks like the one above.

Although you won’t have specific data on a competing URL, Google Analytics will show you how you stack up to everyone else within your industry.

I love this report because it shows you where to focus your time.

If all of your competitors get way more social traffic or email traffic, it means that’s probably the lowest hanging fruit for you to go after.

On the flipside, if you have 10 times more search traffic than your competition, you’ll want to focus your efforts on where you are losing as that is what’ll probably drive your biggest gains.

The other reason you’ll want to look at the Benchmarking Report is that marketers tend to focus their efforts on channels that drive the most financial gain.

So, if all of your competition is generating the majority of their traffic from a specific channel, you can bet that channel is probably responsible for a good portion of their revenue, which means you should focus on it too.

Report #3: Location, location, location

Have you noticed that my blog is available in a handful of languages?

languages

Well, there is a reason for that.

I continually look at the location report. To get to it, click on “Audience” then “Geo” and then “Location”.

location

This report will tell you where the biggest growth opportunities are for your blog.

Now with your blog, you’ll naturally see the most popular countries being the ones where their primary language is the one you use on your blog.

For example, if you write in English, then countries like the United Kingdom and the United States will be some of your top countries.

What I want you to do with this report is look at the countries that are growing in popularity but the majority of their population speak a different language than what you are blogging on.

For me, Brazil was one of those countries. Eventually, I translated my content into Portuguese and now Brazil is the second most popular region where I get traffic from.

This strategy has helped me get from 1 million visitors a month to over 4 million. If you want step-by-step instructions on how to expand your blog content internationally, follow this guide.

Report #4: Assisted conversions

Have you heard marketers talk about how blog readers don’t convert into customers?

It’s actually the opposite.

conversions

Those visitors may not directly convert into a customer, but over time they will.

But hey, if you have a boss or you are spending your own money on content marketing, you’re not going to trust some stats and charts that you can read around the web. Especially if they only talk about long-term returns when you are spending money today.

You want hard facts. In other words, if you can’t experience it yourself, you won’t believe it.

That’s why I love the Assisted Conversions Report in Google Analytics.

In the navigation bar click on “Conversions” then “Multi-Channel Funnels” and then “Assisted Conversions”.

It’ll load up a report that looks like this:

assisted conversion

This report shows you all of the channels that help drive conversions. They weren’t the final channel in which someone came from but they did visit your blog from one of these channels.

In other words, if they didn’t visit or even find your blog from one of these sources, they may not have converted at all.

Now when your boss asks you if content marketing is worth it, you can show the Assisted Conversions Report to show how much revenue your blog helps drive.

The other beautiful part about this report is that it tells you where to focus your marketing efforts. You want to focus your efforts on all channels that drive conversions, both first and last touch.

Report #5: Users flow

What’s the number one action you want your blog readers to take?

I learned this concept from Facebook. One of the ways they grew so fast is they figured out the most important action that they want people to take and then they focused most of their efforts on that.

For you, it could be someone buying a product.

For me, it’s collecting a lead and that starts with a URL.

But I found that people interact with my blog differently based on the country they are coming from.

In other words, if I show the same page to a United States visitor and from someone in India or even the United Kingdom, they interact differently.

How did I figure that out?

I ran some heatmap tests, but, beyond that, I used the Users Flow Report in Google Analytics.

users flow

In your navigation click on “Audience” and then “Users Flow”.

Within the report, it will break down how people from each country interact with your blog and the flow they take.

I then used it to adjust certain pages on my blog. For example, here is the homepage that people in the United States see:

us home page

And here is the homepage that people from the United Kingdom see:

uk home page

The United Kingdom homepage is much shorter and doesn’t contain as much content and that’s helped me improve my conversions there.

And of course, in the United States, my audience prefers something else, hence the homepages are different.

The Users Flow Report is a great way to see how you should adjust your site based on each geographical region.

Report #6: Device overlap

Blog content can be read anywhere and on any device. From desktop devices to tablets to even mobile phones.

The way you know you have a loyal audience isn’t just by seeing how many of your readers continually come back, but how often are they reading your blog from multiple devices.

For example, you ideally want people to read your blog from their iPhone and laptop.

The more ways you can get people to consume your content, the stronger brand loyalty you’ll build, which will increase conversion.

Within the navigation, click on “Audience” then “Cross Device” and then “Device Overlap”.

device overlap

I’m in the B2B sector so my mobile traffic isn’t as high as most industries but it is climbing over time.

And what I’ve been doing is continually improving my mobile load times as well as my mobile experience to improve my adoption rates.

I’m also working on a mobile app.

By doing all of these things, people can consume content from NeilPatel.com anywhere, which builds stickiness, brand loyalty, and then causes more assisted conversions.

A good rule of thumb is if you can get the overlap to be over 6%, you’ll have a very sticky audience that is much easier to convert.

That’s at least what I can see with all of the Google Analytics accounts I have access to.

Report #7: User Explorer

To really understand what makes your blog readers tick, you need to get inside their mind and figure out what their goals are and how you can help them achieve each of those goals.

A great way to do this is through the User Explorer Report.

Click on “Audience” and then “User Explorer”. You’ll see a screen that looks like this:

user explorer

This shows you every user who visits your site and what they did. You can click on a client id to drill down and see what actions each user performed on your blog.

user explorer

From there, you can click on a time to see exactly what they did each time they visited:

user explorer

What I like to do with this report is to see how the most popular users engage with my blog. What are they reading? What pages are they spending the majority of their time on? What makes them continually come back? How did they first learn about my blog?

By comparing the most popular blog readers with the least popular, I am typically able to find patterns. For example, my most loyal blog readers typically find my site through organic traffic and then subscribe to my email list.

Then they keep coming back, but the key is to get them to opt into my email list.

That’s why I am so aggressive with my email captures. I know some people don’t like it, but I’ve found it to work well.

So I focus a lot of my efforts on building up my organic traffic over referral traffic and then collecting emails.

Look at the patterns that get your most popular users to keep coming back and then adjust your blog flow so that you can create that pattern more often.

Conclusion

Yes, you should look at your visitor count. But staring at that number doesn’t do much.

The 7 reports I describe above, on the other hand, will help you boost your brand loyalty, your repeat visits, and your revenue.

I know it can be overwhelming, so that’s why I tried to keep it to just 7 reports. And if you can continually improve your numbers in each of those reports, your blog will continually grow and eventually thrive.

So what Google Analytics reports do you look at on a regular basis?

Do you want more traffic?

Hey, I’m Neil Patel. I’m determined to make a business grow. My only question is, will it be yours?Arabic / EgyptArabic / IsraelArabic / LibyaArabic / Palestinian TerritoryArabic / QatarArabic / Saudi ArabiaArabic / TunisiaArabic / United Arab EmiratesBulgarian / BulgariaCatalan / SpainCatalan / Valencian AndorraChinese / ChinaChinese / TaiwanCroatian / CroatiaCzech / Czech RepublicDanish / DenmarkDanish / GreenlandDutch / BelgiumDutch / NetherlandsEnglish / AustraliaEnglish / CanadaEnglish / IndiaEnglish / IrelandEnglish / MalaysiaEnglish / MaltaEnglish / New ZealandEnglish / SingaporeEnglish / South AfricaEnglish / Sri LankaEnglish / United KingdomEnglish / United StatesEstonian / EstoniaFinnish / FinlandFrench / AlgeriaFrench / CanadaFrench / FranceGerman / AustriaGerman / GermanyGerman / SwitzerlandGreek / GreeceHebrew / IsraelHungarian / HungaryIcelandic / IcelandIndonesian / IndonesiaItalian / ItalyJapanese / JapanKorean / KoreaMalay / MalaysiaNorwegian / NorwayPolish / PolandPortuguese / BrazilPortuguese / PortugalRomanian / RomaniaRussian / RussiaSerbian / SerbiaSlovak / SlovakiaSlovene / SloveniaSpanish / ArgentinaSpanish / BoliviaSpanish / ChileSpanish / ColombiaSpanish / Costa RicaSpanish / Dominican RepublicSpanish / EcuadorSpanish / El SalvadorSpanish / GuatemalaSpanish / MexicoSpanish / NicaraguaSpanish / ParaguaySpanish / PeruSpanish / Puerto RicoSpanish / SpainSpanish / UruguaySpanish / VenezuelaSwedish / SwedenTagalog / PhilippinesThai / ThailandTurkish / TurkeyUkrainian / UkraineEnglish / United StatesSEARCH

Neil Patel

About Neil Patel

He is the co-founder of Neil Patel Digital. The Wall Street Journal calls him a top influencer on the web, Forbes says he is one of the top 10 marketers, and Entrepreneur Magazine says he created one of the 100 most brilliant companies. Neil is a New York Times bestselling author and was recognized as a top 100 entrepreneur under the age of 30 by President Obama and a top 100 entrepreneur under the age of 35 by the United Nations

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Do you want more traffic?

Hey, I’m Neil Patel. I’m determined to make a business grow. My only question is, will it be yours?Arabic / EgyptArabic / IsraelArabic / LibyaArabic / Palestinian TerritoryArabic / QatarArabic / Saudi ArabiaArabic / TunisiaArabic / United Arab EmiratesBulgarian / BulgariaCatalan / SpainCatalan / Valencian AndorraChinese / ChinaChinese / TaiwanCroatian / CroatiaCzech / Czech RepublicDanish / DenmarkDanish / GreenlandDutch / BelgiumDutch / NetherlandsEnglish / AustraliaEnglish / CanadaEnglish / IndiaEnglish / IrelandEnglish / MalaysiaEnglish / MaltaEnglish / New ZealandEnglish / SingaporeEnglish / South AfricaEnglish / Sri LankaEnglish / United KingdomEnglish / United StatesEstonian / EstoniaFinnish / FinlandFrench / AlgeriaFrench / CanadaFrench / FranceGerman / AustriaGerman / GermanyGerman / SwitzerlandGreek / GreeceHebrew / IsraelHungarian / HungaryIcelandic / IcelandIndonesian / IndonesiaItalian / ItalyJapanese / JapanKorean / KoreaMalay / MalaysiaNorwegian / NorwayPolish / PolandPortuguese / BrazilPortuguese / PortugalRomanian / RomaniaRussian / RussiaSerbian / SerbiaSlovak / SlovakiaSlovene / SloveniaSpanish / ArgentinaSpanish / BoliviaSpanish / ChileSpanish / ColombiaSpanish / Costa RicaSpanish / Dominican RepublicSpanish / EcuadorSpanish / El SalvadorSpanish / GuatemalaSpanish / MexicoSpanish / NicaraguaSpanish / ParaguaySpanish / PeruSpanish / Puerto RicoSpanish / SpainSpanish / UruguaySpanish / VenezuelaSwedish / SwedenTagalog / PhilippinesThai / ThailandTurkish / TurkeyUkrainian / UkraineEnglish / United StatesSEARCH

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Comments (53)

  1. VishalThanks for sharing neil, being a learner, i can focus on more in depth of cohort and assisted conversions.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelYou are very welcome!REPLY
  2. Jephthah WisdomThanks, seems like a good idea. Web-push and Email.I get your Web-Push and Emails, that’s how I get your updates.I got to this post through a push notification on Chrome Browser for pcREPLY
    1. Neil PatelYou are very welcome, Jephthah!REPLY
  3. Jürgen WeberIch Liebe ihren Blog und habe sehr viel gelernt. Herzlichen dank.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelThanks so much!REPLY
  4. eduardo bolañosmuy bueno tu sietes informes de google analytics excelenteREPLY
    1. Neil PatelMuchas gracias ?REPLY
  5. DanielNeil! What a great article. Thank you from Germany ?
    Looking forward to you APP and keep working on your Tools. They are awesomeREPLY
    1. Neil PatelYou are very welcome, Daniel! I am glad you liked it!REPLY
  6. WpwebsmartzThanks Neil this very special for meREPLY
    1. Neil PatelYou are very welcome!REPLY
  7. Kelly RichardsThanks Neil! This is a great one. Perhaps you can do a course on GA one day….REPLY
    1. Neil PatelMaybe one day, Kelly ?REPLY
  8. JimVery informative article NeilREPLY
    1. Neil PatelThanks so much, Jim!REPLY
  9. Emmanuel JoshuaThanks for the insights. I will surely look in the direction you have described – going beyond Audience and source.Somehow, I have a question. I have two Google Analytics Property for a single blog, one for http and the other for https.Thanks!
    Can I delete the one for http as I recently upgraded to https?REPLY
    1. Neil PatelIf you are only using the https version of the site then you only need to track that.REPLY
  10. Al SargentGreat job as always Neil. One trick I found when going through your post was to use GA’s search capability to find the reports more quickly. You might want to update the post to include what to search for in GA to more quickly access each of the reports above. Handy time-saver. Thanks for all the tips!REPLY
    1. Neil PatelThanks for the suggestion, Al ?REPLY
  11. Nancy MulliganThank You so much, Neil! I have never done a deep dive into the audience that visits my blog and just accepted the initial overview on analytics. This information is super helpful and I will start using this to my advantage.Thanks AgainREPLY
    1. Neil PatelYou are very welcome, Nancy. Happy you found this helpful ?REPLY
  12. Mathukutty P. V.Thanks for the great post. very informative, learned many new things. From an online friend I had learned about acquisition and behaviour. So, I used to check visitors and links. Never new audience have this much information. I found my visits as admin also in analytics. Can I stop the visits of admin/editor in reports? Could not understand the benchmark report. I don’t have discount or sale. Just blog posts only. Should I use hello bar?REPLY
    1. Neil PatelYes. You can add IP addresses to not be included in your tracking.REPLY
  13. Brain MateThanks, Neil
    Awesome article on Analytics on advanced featuresREPLY
    1. Neil PatelYou are very welcome!REPLY
  14. Abuzer BurhanpurThanks for sharing this…it was very helpful as a beginner.
    is there any free tool to check competitors backlinks.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelUbersuggest ?REPLY
  15. Viken PatelThat’s a great insight. I am really glad that I subscribed to your email list.
    I am now easily able to focus on conversions more rather than just numbers.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelThat’s great, Viken ?REPLY
  16. Abhishek singhVery informative and resourceful article.. Thanku soo much sir for this article. I was not a bit much of reader but your article drove me into reading passion and recently I started my blog.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelThanks!REPLY
  17. Shivkumar SharmaThank you Neil for this informative blog post. It did help to identify what reports you need to look at from google analytics to boost your brand and have a check on visitors.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelI am glad you liked it!REPLY
  18. DenverI always look at new visitors everyday & pay less attention to repeat visitors. This blog post has shown me that repeat visitors are important & can convert.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelVery important!REPLY
  19. ShymaA beautiful and interesting read detailed with images. Thank you Neil, for posting! Benefits all new web masters out there.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelYou are very welcome!REPLY
  20. Rahul ChauhanA good piece of information Neil.
    Keep up the good work.
    Cheers.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelThanks ?REPLY
  21. Rahul ShuklaOhh my god Neil How can you do that this is amazing and did really thankful to you for increase the level of SEO skills day by day thank you so muchREPLY
    1. Neil PatelYou are very welcome, Rahul!REPLY
  22. Pinal Kumar PatelGold standard insights…Thanks for the post, Neil.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelYou are very welcome!REPLY
  23. ZohaibYou are a true inspiration to me. Always great content!REPLY
    1. Neil PatelThanks so much!REPLY
  24. Emmanuel IkesuI really love this blog post it has help me alot thanks Neil patelREPLY
    1. Neil PatelAwesome!REPLY
  25. Emma OliviaThank you so much Neil. I think collecting Email and Push notification are the ones surely gonna try. Hope it helps me.REPLY
    1. Neil PatelYou are very welcome, Emma!REPLY
  26. ChocovivThanks for sharing!REPLY

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Arabic / EgyptArabic / IsraelArabic / LibyaArabic / Palestinian TerritoryArabic / QatarArabic / Saudi ArabiaArabic / TunisiaArabic / United Arab EmiratesBulgarian / BulgariaCatalan / SpainCatalan / Valencian AndorraChinese / ChinaChinese / TaiwanCroatian / CroatiaCzech / Czech RepublicDanish / DenmarkDanish / GreenlandDutch / BelgiumDutch / NetherlandsEnglish / AustraliaEnglish / CanadaEnglish / IndiaEnglish / IrelandEnglish / MalaysiaEnglish / MaltaEnglish / New ZealandEnglish / SingaporeEnglish / South AfricaEnglish / Sri LankaEnglish / United KingdomEnglish / United StatesEstonian / EstoniaFinnish / FinlandFrench / AlgeriaFrench / CanadaFrench / FranceGerman / AustriaGerman / GermanyGerman / SwitzerlandGreek / GreeceHebrew / IsraelHungarian / HungaryIcelandic / IcelandIndonesian / IndonesiaItalian / ItalyJapanese / JapanKorean / KoreaMalay / MalaysiaNorwegian / NorwayPolish / PolandPortuguese / BrazilPortuguese / PortugalRomanian / RomaniaRussian / RussiaSerbian / SerbiaSlovak / SlovakiaSlovene / SloveniaSpanish / ArgentinaSpanish / BoliviaSpanish / ChileSpanish / ColombiaSpanish / Costa RicaSpanish / Dominican RepublicSpanish / EcuadorSpanish / El SalvadorSpanish / GuatemalaSpanish / MexicoSpanish / NicaraguaSpanish / ParaguaySpanish / PeruSpanish / Puerto RicoSpanish / SpainSpanish / UruguaySpanish / VenezuelaSwedish / SwedenTagalog / PhilippinesThai / ThailandTurkish / TurkeyUkrainian / UkraineEn / Us

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