6 Top Google Analytic Reports in 5 minutes

April 9, 2014


For many of our clients we know they have a Google Analytic’s account but they don’t know how to use it effectively, nor do they have the time to learn.  Fair enough, after all, that is why we have SEO service providers like myself and the many other SEO companies out there.

So today I am going to show you six really simple reports to generate in Google Analytic’s that will take you just a few minutes to produce with no need to be an expert in Google Analytic’s.

Google Analytic Reports – Getting Started

Get started by going to the Google Analytic Reporting section firstThe first thing to do is log into your Google Analytic’s account, this will normally take you directly to the “Reporting” Section of Analytic’s but if not then just click on the Reporting section in the top bar of the page.

If you are have someone else setting up and managing your Google Analytic’s then you wont need to go into the Admin section.  Best to stay clear of that for now.

The Dashboard

Before we go much further I want to highlight the Google Analytic Dashboard that is actually a very useful place to get some overall information.

If you click on “Dashboards” you will see a small drop down menu that goes into two sections – “Private” & “New Dashboard”.  Click on “Private” and then “My Dashboard” and voila…your dashboard will appear in the main screen.

It is very important at this point that you set the data points for the report.  You will see in the top right section that you have a date range.  You need to now set this so that you are seeing data from the period that you want.

Set the date range for your Google Analytic ReportYou have multiple options:

You can choose a custom date range – for as short or as long as you want.

You have preset periods – today / yesterday / last week / last month

You can also then compare one set of data with another set of data from a different date by checking the compare box and selecting the date range.  It is a good idea to compare the same length of time.  For example, I might look at the last month’s data and compare it to the same month last year.

Now you have your date range set, we can move on.

So let’s now take a look at some reports that are easy to generate but will help you review what is going on with your website.

On the left hand menu you can skip past Shortcuts ( I am coming back to this later), Intelligence Events and Real Time.

I am first aiming for the Audience section.

Audience – overview

Let us click on the Audience section which will bring down a long menu of other options. To start with let’s look at the overview section as this is the first report I want to look at.

You will get a view that looks like this:

Google Analytic Audience Overview report is very useful.


This is a great view to start with as it is easy to get a general idea of your traffic.  You can see here that we have the number of visits coming to the site for the month but you can change this metric easily.  If you have added the compare data then you can see a nice comparison between the two periods.

You should note that you can see the visits, unique visitors, page views, pages per visit, average visit duration, bounce rate and & of new visits here also.

If you like this view then I would suggest that you add this to the shortcut menu by clicking on shortcut.


Acquisition – Channels

Next we will leave the Audience section and head into the Acquisition section for Google Analytic.  I suggest we look at the “Channels” section now.

When you click on channels you will get a view like this:

Acquisition - channels report from Google Analytic


I find this one useful as you can clearly see there is a lot of data that compares the four ways that traffic is coming to the site – organic, direct, social & referral. It also then breaks that down into three sections – Acquisition, behavior & conversion.

Again I am going to add this to my shortcut menu as it is a very useful report.

Acquisition – all traffic

Next let’s look at the “all traffic” report that we also get from the Acquisition section of Google Analytic’s.

Acquisition - all traffic Google Analytic Report

Again I am going to add this to my shortcut menu as it is a very useful report.


Acquisition – keywords – organic

I want to take a look at the keywords for the organic search results.  This is really useful as it will help me to determine how people are finding my website, by using which specific keywords.  If you know how people find your site then it will help you to understand what needs to be done with your pages. Acquisition Organic Keyword Report from Google Analytic Again I am going to add this to my shortcut menu as it is a very useful report.


Acquisition – social

Still in the acquisition section we want to now look at the “social” report as this will help me to see what traffic is coming from the social side of things along with how they convert.  Many people spend a lot of time on social media so understanding how it performs at a glance is very useful. Social Acquisition report from Google Analytic Again this report is added to my shortcut menu.


Conversion – goals – overview

And last but not least we will look at conversion.  This report will depend on what goals you have set up.  Some examples of goals could be:

someone coming to a specific page a contact form being completed a pdf document is downloaded someone spends a certain amount of time on a page

The list is endless.

Understanding how well your site converts is vital as without conversion your site may well be worthless.


Goal Conversion report from Google Analytic


Don’t forget to add this report to the shortcut menu.


And for next time

How often you choose to look at the reports is up to you but the next time you want to look for the reports you will just go to the shortcut menu and all of these reports will be there waiting for you.  All you have to do is ensure that the date period is set for what you want.

If you know of any other really useful reports we should add then please let us know.  We are always happy to help clients with their reporting needs.


If you liked this blog then you may also like this one – SEO Reports – 3 things any business needs to know

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