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The Spooky Metrics that can Measure your Marketing Success
Monday, October 31, 2016 | Carousel30

If you think about it, analytics are spooky. Analytics are used to understand website user acquisition and behavior—while these users behind closed doors—to gain insight on how to further optimize marketing efforts to appeal to the target audience’s interests and motives. In some cases, marketers can even be considered ghostly because while users cannot see us, we can see them and all their activity. The use of analytics to look into website user behavior allows marketers to get inside the minds of users to track activity and foreshadow what user interaction is next. However, simply analyzing high-level acquisition and behavior using primary metrics will not result in a complete understanding of how to improve marketing efforts and achieve organizational objectives, so we’re here to point out some of the metrics and dimensions that could be added to your review when analyzing your users.

Google Analytics offers an often underutilized feature called secondary dimensions. These dimensions allow marketers the opportunity to dig deeper into specific metrics to get even more detailed information about a website’s users, their behavior, and their engagement which can be used to gain valuable insights on how your website can be optimized. Read below for some of the most common marketing objectives and some of the specific secondary dimensions that could help create a howling year-end report:

Marketing Objective #1: Improve Relevant Audience Traffic to the Website

One of the most common objectives amongst marketers is to improve acquisition to a website. While this is an important metric to note, simply understanding whether or not customers are accessing your website and how they are getting there is not enough. Rather, it’s important to take a look at where these users are coming from geographically, the type of devices that were used, and the keywords that attributed to the website’s acquisition. The following secondary dimensions can be used to figure out where your users are coming from, and how they got there:

User > Region

The Region secondary dimension allows you to see where your customers are coming from geographically. This is important, especially if you are trying to target a certain region, state, or even city. By seeing exactly where your users are coming from, you can determine if your location specific campaigns are working, and which cities or areas could be targeted in the future.

User > Device Type

Having an understanding of the types of devices your users are accessing your website on can be an important metric in understanding if a mobile- or desktop-specific campaign is necessary. For example, if most of your traffic is coming from smart phones, running an ad campaign on a popular application or a mobile-only campaign might be useful to you in the future.

Acquisition > Keywords

While increasing traffic to a website is important, increasing targeted traffic is even more important. Identifying the keywords users search within search engines could help you understand the types of information users are looking for initially which could help identify what keywords should be optimized.

Marketing Objective #2: Optimize Landing Pages to Improve User Engagement On-Site

The landing page(s) used by an organization are extremely important in keeping users engaged and helping them find the information they are looking for in the least amount of time. Because of this, understanding which landing pages see the most acquisition and engagement—as well as what pages users visit thereafter—on your website can help optimize these pages to be as useful as possible to your users. Additionally, such learnings can be used to optimize digital advertisements by directing customers to a landing page that is most useful to them.

Behavior > Landing Page

The Behavior > Landing Page secondary dimension helps identify the pages that received the most acquisition and the pages that saw the most engagement and lowest % Exit rate. By understanding which landing page users see when they first access your website—and then looking deeper into whether or not they stayed on your website—can help you determine whether or not your landing page is effective. This dimension can help identify what pages are providing the most valuable information which could provide insight on page elements that attribute most to the success of higher engagement.

Behavior > Second Page

Getting users to access your website is the first step, but an even more important metric is to look at where users are going once they leave the landing page. This understanding of their next step can give you insights like what the users are thinking about while viewing your website and what they are looking to find which can help guide optimization, design, and content efforts.

Marketing Objective #3: Increase Goal Completions and Conversions

If you’re part of an organization that sells a product or service, a main objective could be to increase sales. This is a natural objective to use but just looking at the numbers isn’t always enough. Taking a deeper look at what times users are interacting, converting, and leaving your website could help you better understand your customer’s behavior.

User > Day of Week/Time

Being aware of what days of the week or times of day customers are most likely to convert is a crucial metric to take a look at if you are trying to increase sales. By looking at these days of the week and times of day, you can better determine when and how to use call to action messages throughout your website and rope in customers who haven’t quite closed the sales loop.

Behavior > Exit Page

Are your potential customers filling up their cart only to leave the page before checking out? The exit page secondary dimension helps you determine where you are losing these potential customers and may even provide insight on why they are leaving. Some of this information will be out of your control as some users may just be browsing the items on sale but if most of your traffic is leaving after reaching a particular page, there may be something you can do to change that fate.


With the help of secondary dimensions, we are able to possess ghost-like attributes and are able to take a deeper dive into the behavior of visitors while they are behind closed doors, to improve our understanding of a website’s user acquisition, behavior, and engagement. By diving a little deeper in the habits of your users, you can gain insight that will allow you to make improvements to every aspect of your multi-channel marketing, and not just your marketing efforts online. Lucky for you, there are countless secondary dimensions to look at and using them can make you the spookiest, and the smartest, marketer around.

Category - Analytics