The at Stanford University, California. It was never realized

The
Google phenomena got conceptualized in the year 1996
as a research project by Larry Page and Sergey Brin when they were both PhD students
at Stanford University, California. It was never
realized by the researchers of the day that one day, the said project would become
bigger than the biggest and larger than the largest in the world of information
and computing landscape. Over the last decade or so, Google search has become so
like demigod to humans, which has practically all the answers to your questions.
How Google grew and become such a mammoth or intelligent system and brought
many free of cost services to the general public virtual world, is another part
of the story.

 

Website theorized few years before the birth of The Google.
Creation of website revolutionised the Online World but birth of Google gave to
more meaning and wider reach. We are living in an age, where a website works like an individual, a business or an
organization, and are typically dedicated to a particular topic or purpose. Every
website exists for a reason, and every measurement
strategy must align with the business goals of the website. Google has made the websites a searchable
thing, to say a least. Later it was realized by the Google promoters that only searching
of websites or links is not sufficient but further evaluating of the
performance of a websites is equally important too.

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Then there comes a spectacle of Google
Analytics born out of the need. In simple terms, Google Analytics is a tool to quantitatively
measure what happens on your websiteAB1 . When
Google launched Google Analytics in year 2005, it transformed the meaning of web
analytics. No longer was web analytics remained an expensive endeavor that
required a substantial investment in software. Measurement tools became
irrelevant and the focus started to shift to one thing i.e. Google Analytics.

 

Small
and mid-sized businesses now have access to a world-class analytics tool in the
form of Google Analytics that can help drive their continuous improvement
process. Larger
organizations that have traditionally spent six figures on an analytic tool are
too migrating to Google Analytics because it provides 90% of all the reporting
and analysis functionality that their organizations need. AB2 They
can save tremendous amounts of money and reallocate those funds in making the
data actionable.AB3 

 

How Google
Analytics can impact the small business owner

 

Baring
few exceptional online / website business models, mostly websites exists due to
either of the FOUR reasons:

 

1.     
To sell a product

2.     
To generate a sales lead

3.     
To generate advertisement revenue

4.     
To provide support

 

Remember,
small business player always wanted to move beyond knowing about traffic to
websites and wish to understand if their websites are really adding to the
bottom line of the business. Google Analytics answered many of the unattended
questions.

 

Mia
Vallo , Sr.Director Marketing Analytics, National Geographic said ” Google
Analytics products helped us improve engagement by 33% and click throughs by
21% for content promotions on our homepage”

 

Google
Analytics is one of the most popular clickstream data tools that has ever been
created by anyone in the history. In the five years since its launch, it has
been adopted by millions of businesses, both large and small. Google Analytics sitting
on top of websites provides a core set of tools (easy to learn and manage) that
supports some of the very basic to advanced website measuring dimensions.

 

First
and foremost, Google Analytics tracks many standard website metrics, like
visits, unique visitors, pageviews, bounce rate, and abandonment rate. AB4 But,
more importantly, it can track specific business outcomes, commonly known as goals (A goal
can be almost any visitor activity on the website. This includes viewing a
specific page, spending a certain amount of time, or viewing a minimum number
of pages during a visit) AB5 

 

In
addition to tracking goals, Google Analytics does a great job at pursuing
different kinds of marketing initiatives. 
Google Analytics not only track AdWords (advertising service by Google for businesses wanting to display advertisements), but it can also conveniently track other
types of paid searches, email marketing, display advertising, social media, and
many more. Ability
to drill down and focus on various segments of traffic is key to Google
Analytics.AB6 

 

How to go about it

 

Google
Analytics is indirectly a business intelligence tool and, because every
business has different data needs, implementation may be very from person to
person and from business to business.

 

Implementing
Google Analytics does take some planning and foresight that includes the
various steps to be performed, may initially taking support of some techie guy
in the organisation: –

 

1.     
Gather and document business requirements.

2.     
Analyze and document website architecture.

3.     
Create a Google Analytics account.

4.     
Configure the Google Analytics tracking code and tag website pages,
accordingly.

5.     
Create Variables, Segmentation and Custom Reports

6.     
Enable event tracking

7.     
Tag marketing campaigns.

8.     
Create dashboards to have a look at business goals / performance
metrices with mouthwatering statistical visuals

 

How it Works under the hood

Google Analytics expects a certain
code or tag to be placed on all the pages of a website. That specific code tracks
the traffic to website and provide the business user with understanding of the visitors,
detailing about behavior pattern, their likes and dislikes.

 

Though
initially it sounds bit technical from small business owner perspective (requiring
assistance of web developer / web designer) but in reality, long term benefits
to business users are enormous as it keeps giving 24*7 insights and stories on
website performance.

 

Conclusively, one thing can be
underlined that Google Analytics will give you numbers and tempting visuals on
those numbers. But numbers can only be meaningful, when you know exactly what
you are looking for.