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If you use Google Analytics to track your website (you ARE tracking your website, aren’t you??), you might soon notice a few big changes. The big G is rolling out some major upgrades to their website tracking system that even those with a passing interest in SEO and conversion rate optimization are sure to find exciting.
Real Time Tracking with Google Analytics
The first major update is the addition of real time website tracking. You may have seen something similar to this if you’ve ever visited a website message board and seen “Users currently online”. Basically, if you’ve switched to the new Analytics dashboard (by clicking New Analytics on your home screen), it’ll show you exactly how many users are on your site right now. It’ll also show you:
- How they got to your site (traffic sources)
- The web pages being viewed
- The geographic location of your visitors
- The keywords that brought them to your site
While this isn’t hugely beneficial from an SEO standpoint, it is going to be pretty cool to see what people are doing when they come to your website. It’s also a great way to kill time on a slow day at the office (just kidding, just kidding). This is especially true for frequently updated websites as it will show you exactly what topics and keywords are bringing in the most traffic allowing you to quickly add more content on that topic (think content-centric SEO).
Google Analytics Premium
The second new feature is the addition of a paid Google Analytics premium addition. The paid version of Google Analytics will remain fundamentally the same, with features and overall user experience basically identical to the free version we all know and love. However, it comes with a healthy set of features that most of us haven’t seen yet, including:
Advanced processing power
Currently, Google Analytics can track your website up to 10 million visits a month. Premium subscribers will be able to track…cue Dr. Evil…1 BILLION VISITS (seriously)!! Now, if you’re an HVAC company in Virginia for instance, you’re probably never going to see that much traffic, ever (although, it’s nice to dream!). But if you’re an enterprise SEO company that manages 1,000 or more well trafficked sites, that extra data could be invaluable.
There is a caveat to this – the 1 billion visits applies to a single business or enterprise, but can be spread across multiple websites. What this means is that if your company owns 10 websites and the combined monthly traffic for all 10 sites reaches 1 billion, it will fall under the umbrella of a single premium account. If you have multiple billion visitor websites, however, you’ll first need to marry my daughter, then purchase multiple Premium accounts.
Advanced analysis tools
In addition to enhanced processing power, Premium Google Analytics subscribers will get advanced analysis tools to take their website tracking to the next level. These tools include up to 50 custom variable slots (regular Google Analytics gives you 5), unsampled report downloads for custom report requests and unaggregated report downloads with up to 1 million rows per download. Again, not much use if you’re tracking the website of an SMB, but the data could be extremely beneficial when doing SEO for enterprise companies.
And of course, where would such a great product be without a dedicated support staff to help you sort through those billions of data points. Premium Google Analytics subscribers will have access to a dedicated support team, which includes professional account management, phone and email support during normal business hours, implementation consulting and tagging audit, live and webinar training and 24/7 emergency support.
The price for all this? $10 a month. Only kidding – $150,000 a year, billed in monthly installments.
HOLD ON NOW!!
Like we said, Google Analytics Premium is not for your average home services company. However, if your website (or sites) gets several hundred million visitors a month, Google Analytics Premium will help you a) be able to more accurately track those visits and b) organize the data into highly accurate, highly customizable, highly digestible forms that aren’t possible with regular Google Analytics.
So what does it all mean?
So in the end, who cares? Google adds one feature that doesn’t really make a difference, and another that only web superstars can afford – why does that matter to me? Well, what it really shows is that amidst all of the anti-trust legal trouble Google is dealing with right now, the company is still invested in its users. I’m sure over time we’ll continue to see new iterations of their website tracking software rolling out, each with better and better features to help you stay on top of your marketing.
Contact us today to learn more about how Google Analytics can help you improve your website’s performance!
About The Author: Ben Landers is the President and CEO of Blue Corona, a data-driven, inbound internet marketing company. Submit an inquiry to book Ben to speak at your next conference or event.
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