Every day I am striving to achieve something to stay motivated and build my expertise in marketing. Today I completed the Google Analytics Beginners course after noticing knowledge of this platform is a recurring requirement for many job roles.

And here’s my certificate!

The course objectives were to help you learn how to create and implement an account, read basic reports and analysis and set up goals. I can confidently say I now know how to perform each of these processes.

The first block of lessons divulged what digital analytics were in the first place and why they are important for anyone working in a business. Analytics help us to understand acquisition, behaviour and hopefully conversion, tracking how initial interest and engagement may lead to successful goals like purchases, and how we can harness this to promote loyalty and reach new customers. The hierarchy of the system was explored, with the organisation setting up an Account, containing at least one property and then multiple views. The interactive demonstration took you through how to create and then switch between different views (e.g. Master, Test) and how to add filters properly to access the data you are interested in. I obtained 87% in the first assessment and then 100% upon review.

The second block of lessons gave a guided tour of the Analytics interface and how to understand overview and full reports. I learned the difference between audience (user characteristics), acquisition (how users found the website through organic, social, referral etc.), behaviour (how users engaged on the webpage and what the landing and exit pages were) and conversions (tracking if website goals had been met). Click through guides were particularly useful to help navigate the webpage and different associated tools. I found “bounce rate” an interesting and useful term to know – the % of users that leave or close a website after viewing one page and taking no additional action. Analysing data like this can prompt an investigation into a particular web page and improvements to make the page more engaging and reduce the bounce rate. I also gained 100% on the second assessment.

The third block of lessons introduced audience, acquisition and behaviour reports. Audience reports give better understanding of the characteristics of users that visit your webpage and let you know whether you are hitting the desired target audience. Analysing regions and devices with high bounce rates means you can identify why this might be the case and optimise accordingly – translating advertisements or adapting the site for mobile use. Acquisition reports inform us of the channels and sources which give the highest quality traffic and conversions, meaning users engage well with the site. Bounce rate is a good indicator of the quality of website traffic as the lower it is, the longer users are staying engaged. Behaviour reports concern features such as content drilldown which groups together pages of your website and looking at landing and exit pages to review where users are first and last viewing your website. For example, you do not want the shopping cart or checkout page to be your most common exit page! I gained 100% in this assessment too.

Lastly, lesson block four took you through how campaigns are used in the context of Google Analytics, such as through customising URLs with campaign tags to find out the medium, source and campaign through which they interacted with the promotion. Goals can be used in Google Analytics to measure your business objectives and to track the conversion rates which are crucial for performance indication. I obtained 100% in the final assessment of the course.

Overall, this was a fantastic beginner’s insight into Google Analytics and I can confidently operate this tool. I look forward to implementing this knowledge in my career and taking a more advanced course in the near future.

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