Analytics is essential for gathering vital information and data about your website.
You can use many tools to do this, however, the most common tool for analysing website performance and traffic is Google Analytics. You'll find that many businesses will use this alongside Google Search Console (GSC).
However... The most common complaint that businesses and users report when comparing Google Analytics findings and Google Search Console (GSC) is that the data is "inaccurate."
You have probably experienced this before: You try to match clicks from Google Search Console with traffic to landing pages from analytics, but the statistics aren't even close!
While precision is essential, it is not synonymous with accuracy.
Google Analytics and Google Search Console don't measure the same things
The quick reason is that the measurement procedures used by the two data sources differ.
Because Google Search Console (GSC) is based on query and click (or selection) logs, the data will be similar to what you'd see in your access log files (the files you get access to from DevOps for log file analysis).
To further understand what causes the data disparities between GSC and analytics, you must first comprehend how each tool collects and interprets user behaviour data.
Query and Selection (Click) Logs: Anatomy
Google is always in a never-ending pursuit of search quality. This naturally causes them to collect a plethora of data points for each search and each searcher. This is done in hopes to acquire a thorough picture of what's going on in the SERPs.
Despite evidence of the contrary, Google has stated that they do not allow clicks and click-through rates to impact rankings. They have also said that they use click data for performance reviews.
One of the recurring debates between public-facing Googlers and SEOs has been this.
There are various standard evaluation measures for information retrieval, including:
Abandonment of SERPs.
The percentage of sessions that are successful.
Another common question people ask is, how many impressions do ranking tools represent?
For example, how many times have you pressed enter on autosuggest to discover that it searches for "Rumpelstiltskin" instead of "Rump steak?"
What about when you're scrolling on your phone and fat finger the incorrect result?
These are all examples of how the data Google obtains could have a significant number of mistakes for which they must account.
So, what's the best way to get more precise data?
As you add more specificity to how you review a website, the precision of the data given in Google Search Console improves.
In other words, the tool produces more data if you develop profiles that reflect deeper layers of the directory structure. Adding tens or hundreds of subdirectories to your Google Search Console might be time-consuming. Still, the increased data precision can be beneficial for A/B testing and identifying breakout keyword chances.
When creating many profiles, keep in mind that the GSC user interface only allows 1,000 queries per search filter.
Because the API returns 5,000 results per search filter, you should consider using it to pull your data.
It would help if you also considered looping through a series of tries as search filters to extract as much data as possible. This guarantees that you're utilising as many subsets of terms as feasible as filters to get the most results.
You can acquire the most specific statistics by doing this by subdirectory and following your site's taxonomy.
Let's summarise this.
In summary, Google Analytics is user-centric. It offers information on those who visit and interact with your website rather than focusing on search engines.
Who is visiting your site? How did they find it? How long do they stay on your website?
It can also provide information on keywords, such as which generate the most traffic and which results in the most conversions.
You can develop your custom reports on website performance using this data to gain insight into crucial business decisions.
On the other hand, Google Search Console (GSC) is the place to go if you want to search data directly from the search engine for your website. It can be utilised to help you improve your SEO and organic visitors.
Blog Writing for SEO
Using blogs to boost SEO
If you're thinking of starting a blog writing for SEO, then you're in the right mindset. But, there are many things to consider when writing blogs to help your website rank.
Here are some helpful tips on writing SEO content for your blog to get you started on the right path:
Know your subject.
Having a clear goal and purpose for your blog's content will help you structure your blog post content for the readers and plan out what keywords and headers you'll be using for your blog post that will help with SEO.
Use the right headers.
Google uses "web crawlers" or "spiders" to skim through your content to understand your blog content. To help Google Web Crawlers do this effectively, section your blog content using headers and subheadings appropriately (H1, H2, H3, H4).
Consider these "spiders" to be readers skimming your blog. Your H1 should provide them with an idea of what your article is all about. Then your H2s, H3s, and H4s break down the piece's subtopics.
Subheaders should therefore mirror the substance of the body and contain high-intent keywords. You have a lot better chance of ranking on the SERP if you employ the correct keywords, which are the ones that your target audience uses.
For example, if you think of it as writing a book, your book will have the main title, and your H1 tag. You have different "chapters" of the story within your book, and those will be your H2, H3 and H4 tags.
Keep it interesting - use some images.
Sometimes it's easy to forget about the importance of using the right images that captivates and captures the reader's attention and interest when you are busy writing content for your article. It's human nature to be automatically engaged when there are visual cues to stimulate the brain.
Use alt text in your images.
What is the alt text, and why should you use it?
In short, alt text is an alternative text or description used in HTML to describe what an image looks like or what an image is about on your page or blog post.
This is particularly useful for visually impaired people as they can use screen readers to read the alt-attribute text out to them so that they know what the image is being used on the page. It gives them a way to identify the image and appreciate the content on your website.
This kind of web accessibility is highly regarded by Google. It doubles up to provide Google crawlers or "spiders" a better way to index your image correctly, also known as Image SEO.
Image recognition technology on search engines such as Google has improved over the years. However, search engine crawlers are still unable to "see" photos or images on websites as we can.
Including a keyword or keyword phrase in your alt text for your image can help with Image optimisation, but try to avoid keyword stuffing.
Here's an example of an image and how you can write an alt text from Ok to Best:
Okay alt text: <img src="cbdoil.png" alt="CBD oil">
Better alt text: <img src="cbdoil.png" alt="1000mg CBD Oil">
Best alt text: <img src="cbdoil.png" alt="Brand Name 1000mg CBD Oil">
Another tip is to keep your alt text relatively short, as some screen readers cut off alt text at around 125 characters, so if you can, you should perform a character count on your alt text.
Compress your images
The biggest, best quality image is the best, right? Wrong.
People make a common mistake when using images in their blog posts or articles. "Biggest and best quality" images harm your SEO ranking because the image is too large, and it affects your page loading time.
The longer your page takes to load, the fewer points Google gives your page, as Google views this as a con that affects your page's UX (user experience).
Can you imagine if you were the reader, and the website you want to retrieve information from takes more than 4 or 5 seconds to load a page? What would you feel? And, what would you do? Most likely, you will find a different website that provides the same or similar answer to your query.
Also, did you know that you only need an image size as large as your blog content area?
For example, suppose your blog content area is only 690 pixels wide. In that case, any image above 690 pixels will be automatically shrunk to display only 690 pixels. Using anything above 690 pixels wide will be pointless and only cause your page to load slowly.
Another way you can reduce the size of your image file is the display quality of your image. This is usually measured by PPI (pixels per inch). Usually, the higher the PPI, means the pixels are denser and lend to a sharper, clearer image, but this is unnecessary for a blog post. This usually only matters when you are thinking about printing a large photo print or digital illustration on a large canvas size, for example.
There is various software available that you can use to change your image size and PPI, such as Adobe Photoshop. You can also use Photopea, which is identical to Adobe Photoshop but free to use.
If you feel that slow page speeds cause your low ranking, go to Google's PageSpeed site for a free examination and advice.
Write for humans, not Google.
It is essential to use keywords and to write with SEO in mind. However, writers will often end up "keyword stuffing" just to have as many keywords in their article. They forget that PEOPLE are reading the content by the end of the day. People need to be able to read your content and be engaged with a well-written article.
When you start keyword stuffing your content, your content will become illegible and difficult to read. Instead, try inserting keywords where it fits NATURALLY into your content, not forcing them into your content.
Remember always to write your content with the intent that resonates with your readers.
Don't forget about meta descriptions.
Are you using meta descriptions for your blog posts? If you haven't, you are probably not giving your post the exposure it needs.
It's essential to give your blog posts as much exposure as possible aside from using subheaders and keywords. Using meta descriptions is another way for your blog article to connect with Google. This is another place that Google scans to determine search ranks.
Meta descriptions are one- to three-sentence summaries that appear beneath a result's title and are easy to write.
A few tips when writing meta descriptions are:
Make it a brief description of your article
Use a maximum of two keywords.
Keep it interesting so that you stand out from other similar blog articles.
Meta description boxes are built-in to most content management systems (CMS), so you won't have to look far to find one. If you're using WordPress, you can also download SEO plugins like Yoast to help you determine if your meta description is good.
Aim to write longer articles
We know what you're thinking - Why write longer articles when most people have shorter attention spans, right?
The truth is that Google, like many other search engines, prefers longer blog content or articles. The more words or content there are in your blog post, the more words Google can use as "clues" to figure out what your content or article is all about.
Ideally, 2000 to 2500 words seem ideal for blog articles or posts that many people agree with. There are ways you can still write lengthy blog articles without overwhelming your readers.
Here are a few tips:
Make use of sections in your articles
Break it up with sub-topics / subheadings
Use images that capture the reader's attention and keep them engaged
Utilise bullet points instead of writing a long paragraph where possible
There are so many benefits to utilising internal links in your blog posts, such as:
Aiding your readers in discovering more of your material and getting to know you as a reliable and trustworthy source of information.
Giving your readers additional valuable content keep visitors on your site longer, lowering bounce rates and increasing conversion opportunities.
But, more importantly, when you use internal links, you're giving search engines such as Google opportunities to construct a more accurate sitemap if you link to other pages or blog posts on your website, which helps your website be more discoverable on search engines.
A tip when using internal links more effectively is not to use generic terms like "Read more here". Instead, try to be creative with the choice of words you use for the anchor text you use. For example, as you would when talking to another person, like "Get your copy of Guide to Combining Analytical Techniques."
Another tip is to ensure that your links are relevant to the topic of your content or article so that you are not forcing any "upsells" unnaturally. It needs to be points that support your blog post topic or article.
Are you afraid that linking to external websites will bring traffic away from your website? Don't worry, we've all been there and felt that. But, don't be afraid to link to other websites as you write your blog post. There are benefits to external linking, and here is why:
Linking to reliable websites not only provides additional reading material for blog visitors but also demonstrates to search engines that you've done your homework. Nothing boosts the credibility of a blog post like statistics from reputable sources.
For example, you are writing a medical article about Insomnia and how a product you sell can help with that medical condition. How would the readers know that your information is reliable?
By linking externally to an authoritative site that offers medical reports or studies, it gives your readers assurance that you are a trustworthy source of information. This aids in developing a more convincing and tangible argument, allowing you to acquire your readers' trust.
Link building strategy
Besides internal and external linking, Link Building should also be an essential part of your search ranking and SEO strategy.
Why? Consider the search results as a competition, with the victors receiving the most votes. Each website that links back to you is considered a vote for your website, which increases the trustworthiness of your material in Google's eyes. As a result, you will move higher in the rankings.
When you are blog writing for SEO, it's a good idea to write articles that other websites or media will want to link to in their articles. Include high-value elements in your blog entries, such as unique data and thought leadership, to make them more attractive to bloggers and authors.
Another successful strategy to drive visitors back to your website is to do interviews with professionals.
Understanding Your Digital Landscape
What does your digital landscape look like?
Are you evaluating how to get the most out of your social media networks? Do you have a strategy to get around social media platforms censoring your business's content, which has an enormous impact on your business?
Is your SEO strategy current?
Now let's talk about ranking. You may have had SEO plans in the past that are consistent with the requirements to rank highly. Then another Google algorithm update appears, which means that the SEO strategy will have to be tweaked once more. Marketers and businesses will face problems dealing with more sophisticated SEO algorithms and staying on top of updates.
Perhaps, you are using PPC ads to compete for the top spot on Google searches, but the cost of PPC ads continues to rise. Managing these escalating costs while facing more competition from rival organisations is a huge problem for businesses.
In-house vs outsourcing
Developing a thorough workforce and mapping skills/capabilities to tackle a continually changing competitive market requires much thought. It's becoming ever more critical to get the "what do we do in-house vs what do we outsource" idea right.
In a competitive market in today's busy environment, understanding the digital landscape can be quite tricky. Finding a partner that helps your business and the common challenges could be vital to your growth.
Adaptability is the key to success in a market that is constantly changing. While technology and digital businesses are often inventive and forward-thinking, finding partners with the proper skills and expertise can be complicated.
But more so, finding a partner who is as compassionate about your business as you are.
Conversion Rate Optimisation
What is a conversion?
There are common misconceptions about what a “conversion” is. Most people usually think that Conversion is SEO, but it is not. However, you can improve conversions with good SEO like:
Targeting the right keywords
Have a site that focuses on good UX (user experience)
Designing a website with a good structure
Another common misconception is that conversion is frequently linked to a sale; however, defining conversion by that criterion is excessively restrictive in internet marketing.
Conversion is not always about sales. Conversion is used in digital marketing when your site visitor completes a site goal or a desired activity. When a visitor completes the desired activity on your website, this is what we call conversion.
If your primary purpose on a given website is to go to the next page, this could be a click-through. It could be something as simple as signing up for a newsletter. It could also be a customer that purchases your product. In a nutshell, conversion occurs when someone performs the activity you want them to perform.
Types of Conversions
There are two types of conversions called macro-conversions and micro-conversions. Macro conversions are the “primary goal”.” In contrast, micro conversions are smaller conversions that can or may happen before a macro conversion.
Examples of macro-conversions are:
Buying a product on the website
Obtaining a quote
The act of subscribing to a service
Examples of micro-conversions are:
Subscribing to mailing lists
Making an account and adding a product to the shopping basket
What is a Conversion Rate?
Depending on what you wish to track, the conversion rate is used to track conversions on a web page. You can use Google Analytics to track the conversion rates on your website.
The number of times a user completes a goal on your site, divided by your site traffic, is your conversion rate.
Divide the number of conversions by the number of sessions a user can convert on each visit. For example, your conversion rate is 10% if 100 people view your page and 10 of them sign up for your newsletter.
What is CRO (Conversion Rate Optimisation)?
This is the process of increasing the number of conversions in relation to the total number of visits. There are many ways to do this.
After a visitor arrives on your site, conversion rate optimisation takes place.
Conversion optimisation for SEO or paid ads, on the other hand, focuses on who clicks through to your site. This is from organic search results, how many clicks you get, and which keywords are driving traffic.
Combining Analytical Techniques Using Google Search Console
Google Search Console
When you need search information for your website directly from the search engine, GSC is the place to go. It can be utilised to help you improve your SEO and organic visitors. Here's how to do it:
Your website's links
Google uses links to make sense of the internet; therefore, this is one of the essential components of its algorithm. This feature lets you see who links to your site and what content is getting the most attention. The frequency with which your material is externally linked impacts your SEO and SERP rankings, so keep this in mind.
GSC also has an internal link tool that can assist you in understanding how Google crawls your site. It would help if you searched for pages that are either performing well or poorly. This can be done by first sorting the pages with the most links, then the pages with the fewest, to see which pages are connected to and which aren't. If one of your pages has the least links and is underperforming, Google may be misinterpreting your internal links.
Search Analytics and Keyword Queries
The search analytics report can give you valuable insight into how well your site performs in Google Search. It will split down inquiries, clicks, impressions, CTR, and position for a better understanding. This report includes a list of the most popular Google keyword searches. It also displays your current ranking position, the number of clicks, impressions, and click-through rate (CTR) that each of these terms has generated for your website. It's critical to note that the keywords on your website should reflect your company's mission. If this isn't the case, you should reconsider your keyword selection.
Performance on mobile devices
Following Google's announcement in March 2018 of mobile-first indexing, you must have a mobile-friendly website! Search Console will notify you of any usability concerns Google finds on your site under the heading 'Mobile Usability.' You may then move quickly to correct the issues, ensuring that your offering is constantly performing at its peak.
What can Google Analytics help you track?
Google Analytics offers a plethora of metrics to monitor. Keep in mind that some of these measures are more significant than others, depending on your business goals. When it comes to determining how well your website is performing and who is visiting it, Google Analytics is the tool to use. The following are some of the highlights:
The effectiveness of your landing page
This is your opportunity to convert a visitor to a buyer once they arrive on your landing page. Google Analytics can help you figure out which of your landing pages effectively accomplish your goals.
Demographics of the audience
Do you know who you're talking to? Are they primarily men, perhaps 40-something businesswomen or young professionals? The audience demographics feature lets you see who is visiting your site. You can inform your content strategy and generate more relevant and exciting materials for your target audience.
We spend so much effort optimising for search to attract people to come to your site and convert. This Google Analytics feature will assist you in determining where your visitors are coming from and how they find you. The following categories are used to categorise visitors:
Users who type your domain into their browser directly are known as direct users.
Users who came to your site through another source, such as a website or blog, are referrals.
Users that conducted a search and found your website in the SERPs are known as organic users.
Users that find your site through a social media network are known as social media users.
Email: These are the people who came to your site after clicking on a link in an email.
To summarise, Google Analytics focuses on users, assisting you in determining who visits your site, what they do there, and how they find you. It's an excellent approach to figuring out what's going on with your website and SEO so you can figure out where you can improve.
On the other hand, Google Search Console keeps you informed about your SEO performance, organic ranking, and technicalities - think of it as a website's health checkup.
When Google Search Console alerts us to potential website issues, we analyse the recommendation and decide whether or not modifications are required. Based on the recommendation, we can also decide whether or not the assignment is a development or SEO task.
You can see what's working well and what needs to be improved by combining these analytical techniques.