Turbocharge your SEO with Google Analytics

Google Analytics is not just a tool, as it also provides a pool of features for helping out any kind of online business. It gives you an ample amount of data about your site, which is already organized, and it’s up to you to extract useful information out of it; the way you analyze this data and make sound decisions is most critical in actualizing your business goals and objectives.

Who is this for?

This article aims to help all those bloggers/marketers who are using Google Analytics as a free tool to enhance their SEO strategy. Below, I discuss some Google Analytics features that can help improve your SEO techniques.

Improve keyword research

Keyword research is an essential step before writing any content. You might be using Google Keyword Planner or SEMrush for this process. There’s no doubt that both these tools are the best for successful keyword research. Yet this only helps before you publish the content.

Getting search console data in analytics

To add more keywords to your list, you have to link google search console with analytics. This will help you find the exact keywords for which your content is ranking.

Once this process is completed, the search results will start appearing in your analytics account(Acquisition >> search console >> queries) within the next 24-48 hours.

Google Analytics - search query

The data in the above report is the result of how your content is performing in the search engine field against your competitors.

From the search query column, you can pick more related keywords and add them to your content where they fit.

Master your Bounce Rate

Bounce rates are, for sure, one of the most irritating metrics in Google Analytics, which keep moving up & down. Although Google does not directly penalize your site for having a high bounce rate, the search engine does track people that open a page and quickly hit the back button (which would also be counted as a bounced visitor).

A high bounce rate is a symptom of issues on the site: either the content is not engaging or the site speed may be low. The bounce rate is a good indicator of these symptoms; here are some effective ways to reduce your bounce rate[1]  and improve your site engagement.

Low Site Speed is Irritating

Site speed is very important if you are serious about improving your SEO strategy. Google Analytics’ site speed reports not only displays an overview of your site, but also gives you suggestions for improving page timings.

To view site speed reports, navigate to Behavior >> Site Speed. The important report to look at is the speed suggestions.

Google Analytics - site speed

This report not only displays the average page load time for every page, but also gives you suggestions and speed score. A PageSpeed score above 80 is excellent, but scores below this indicate it is quite necessary to look at the suggestions.

Find the Top 10 Pages

Every time you publish a post, it doesn’t always land on the first page. Likewise, not every post is responsible for boosting your organic traffic. There are always some of posts which perform better and are the main source of traffic that your site has.

To view the top performing posts in Google Analytics, navigate to Behavior >> Site Content >> All Pages.

Google Analytics - site content, all pages

Now, from these reports, it is up to you to determine how you utilize these pages to grab user attention and hook him or her to browse the other important pages.

Landing Pages That Work

Landing page reports display a lot more important data related to your site’s SEO. It isn't just showing the pages, but also the number of impressions, clicks, CTR and the average position. Landing pages clicks are critical for SEO and result in quick changes in SERP's.

To view the landing page reports, navigate to Acquisition >> Search Console >> Landing Pages.

Google Analytics - Acquisition; Landing Pages

As you know, not every page will rank on the first page, but you can better improve the ranking of pages whose average position is below 15. We will apply the filter to the above reports to see the pages with an average position below 15.

Click on the advanced link on top right of the above report. In the filter, select the metrics as “Average Position” from the drop down list and make it less than 15.

Google Analytics - average position

Click Apply to view the filtered reports.

Click on one of the landing pages to see the keywords it is ranking for and include these keywords on the page itself to improve on-site optimization.

Measure Your Backlinks

Backlinks are the backbone of any SEO strategy, as it puts more authority to your site and helps you to rank better on SERP. The more authoritative backlinks your site have, the better it is ranked.

Google Analytics’ referral report is a good source for both analyzing your backlinks and checking the amount of traffic each link is sending to your site.

To view the referral reports, navigate to Acquisition >> All Traffic >> Referrals.

This report alternatively helps you analyze the anchor text quality and all the search console reports in analytics.


Conclusion

SEO can be a daunting process for marketers or bloggers, but using Google Analytics the right way can make it a lot more helpful and easier. It allows you to figure out where to focus your time and prioritize the most rewarding stuff first. Using Google Analytics for SEO has already made my work flexible and enables me to reach out to a wider audience.

Let me know in the comments if you have got any other suggestions. Cheers :)

Noman Karim

Noman Karim is a content Marketer at Marketlytics focusing on improving content strategies. He is a passionate blogger and enjoys writing about marketing, and SEO. Follow him on Twitter.

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