This is definitely one of the harder discussions I will have to partake in for PUB 201. Though I took PUB 101 two years ago, and did not struggle with Google analytics in the slightest, this time around it is different. I set up Google analytics last week and have had zero activity since.
I started off by downloading the GA plugin and activating it on my WordPress. I was given a tracking code and added that tracking code to my header.php file. Once that was set up, I logged into my Google analytics account and turned off my location (for both home and SFU) so that I would not skew my data whenever I logged into my WordPress account. I had my friend, who is also in PUB 201, scroll through my site and click on a bunch of different links. We noticed there was no activity on my Google analytics account but assumed that it would take 24-48 hours for it to activate (as mentioned in class), and therefore I was not too worried.
Fast forward to right now. I log into my Google analytics account and I still have no activity. So therefore, instead of telling you what my bounce rate is, if I see any trends, and where my visitors are coming from, I am going to tell you my analytical hopes for my site. I hope that once Google analytics is set up, my visitors primarily come from the lower mainland. Eventually I would hope that my visitors would be coming from all parts of Canada, but for right now, I would love them to be local to increase my chances of interacting with them more frequently. I understand that I will very likely encounter a number of bots and will have to deal with them accordingly as well.
After reading about typical bounce rates and what is considered to be a “good” bounce rate, I learned that a growing website will typically have a bounce rate ranging between 26% and 71%, with 71% being on the much higher end of the spectrum. Based on the websites in this class, and the bounce rate of my peers, I would love to achieve a bounce rate of anywhere between 25% and 45% (as my site is small and catered to such a small audience).
In terms of page time, my site is meant to be quickly read. I make posts that are meant to be read within 3 minutes (or less). For trends, I highlight my newest content on my front page. Therefore, I am assuming and hoping that there will be a trend in the viewing of newer content (over older content). I would love to see a trend in the viewing of my newsletter/contact me page (as it would suggest that my viewers were hoping to say in touch and/or updated on my site).
I would love to set the goal of having a better understanding of what my viewers want out of my site. I am hoping Google analytics will be able to help me with that aspect, by providing me with crucial data in terms of website viewing. I also want to try to slowly raise the amount of time people are spending on my site. As of right now, I would guess that it is between 15-30 seconds. Like I said, I produce content that takes roughly 3 minutes to read (give or take depending on post). I want to really keep my viewers engaged, and if I could bring 30 seconds up to 45, I would be a happy camper. Here is an awesome site I found, that talks about page views and unique page views and how the differentiate. I found it interesting that Google analytics will count one person, refreshing one page 15 times, as one loooonnnngg view (as opposed to multiple smaller timed views).