2014 has seen Google Universal Analytics (UA), now replaced with Google Analytics 4, move out of Beta (Phase 3), which means that all new properties created in Analytics are now Universal by default. For the majority of those of you with existing properties, they will have been auto-transferred to UA, to take full advantage of all the features you will need to update the tracking codes on your sites to the analytics.js code. If you are unsure of which version of the tracking you are currently implementing you can ask your webmaster or search marketing provider.
One of the great new additions to the UA suite is the inclusion of data taken from the Google double click cookie, which enables demographic data to be gather about users on your site. This may require and update to your website privacy wording and will require an extra line of code, that isn’t featured in the standard analytics.js. So if you would like this data to be collated, you should let your web developer or search marketing team know, before they update the tracking codes on your site.
The tables above demonstrate the data that can be gathered with the demographic data enabled. This data can be utilised to create strong data based trend analysis reports using the advanced segments in custom reports, which can then be fed back into site design and advertising placements, to the benefit of your search marketing campaign.
By using segments in custom reports you can precisely define metrics that you want to take into account. While analytics is bursting with data, unless its refined it can often become meaningless noise. So imagine a monthly report that focuses specifically on the age range and gender of site users who have converted on your site? This would allow you to specifically tailor display advertising placement. It also gives you an insight into the demographic areas that are not converting, allowing you to perhaps target them via a different method of advertising or review your site to see what turned them off? Even if you don’t have demographic and interest tracking enabled, custom reports are still a valuable tool. For example, you could drill down by average order value and city, which would then enable you to focus your advertising in these areas.
In the example above the top nine identified sites all have higher than average Average Order Values.
By increasing key metrics such as conversions, retention and onsite interaction, while not openly stated by Google, it should bolster your search marketing efforts.