How I Use Google Analytics for Business

There are 6 main areas that I check in Google Analytics to get a feel for how a site is performing, where the traffic is coming from, and what the people are interested in.

Audience Overview

2014-04-08 09_29_03-Audience Overview - Google Analytics

While some may view these as “vanity metrics”, they give you a baseline comparison month over month and year over year for how your site is trending over time.

To give you some context, a starter site should aim for 200 visitors a month, then 200 a day. A good bounce rate (user visits one page and then leaves) is less than 60%.

Acquisition Referrals

2014-04-08 09_32_38-Referral Traffic - Google Analytics

There are multiple views under Acquisition (overview, channels, traffic), but I focus on “All Referrals” as it is the most specific category. It lists specific referring sites.

Organic Keywords

The other category under Acquisition I review often is “Keywords > Organic”. It can give some insight into what search terms people are using to find the site.

If your top keywords are your brand name, don’t fret. Congratulate yourself. That’s a sign of success. It means people are searching for your brand name specifically.

Search Engine Optimization Queries

If your top Organic Keyword is “(not provided)” you can still get the keyword information as long as your site is connected to Google Webmaster Tools.

Under Acquisition > Search Engine Optimization > Queries will tell you the keyword, impressions, clicks, and average position for each search query.

Site Content

Under Behavior > Site Content > All Pages, Google Analytics lists the top pages on the site by pageview, time on page, and bounce rate.

I use this in combination with the keyword data for content marketing to determine what to write about when creating new blog posts and pages.

Advanced Analytics

There is much more that Google Analytics can do from A/B testing to automatic reports to goal and conversion tracking to automatic alerts.

If you are interested in learning more about the insights Google Analytics can give your business, contact me or leave a comment below.

Top Posts and Keywords for December 2012

In this 714th post, I discuss my top content, keywords, and income for this website.

Ecclesiastes 3:5 says that there is, “A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones. A time to embrace and a time to turn away (NLT).” Since 2007 I have been purchasing domains for speculation or use, but lately I have been condensing the total number of domains I own. Most of the time I roll them into this blog, but this led to a big pile of disjointed posts that had no real, central meaning. I recently spent a day consolidating the post categories down to 9 main categories + 1 called “Tweets” and then redesigned the homepage to showcase the last 3 posts with a thumbnail + the most popular posts + the last 5 posts from the 9 main categories. This is how I overcame the problem. Looking back, the solution seems simple, but there was a lot of work in eliminating and combining categories for hundreds of posts + the custom programming of the home page to do what it’s doing “automatically”.

Here is a List of Former Domains Included in


Audience Overview

The spike in traffic you see at the left edge of the image above is from combining all posts from the old Watershawl site into this blog. As you can see, the traffic didn’t continue and tapered off, despite leaving the posts in place. Total visits were 2,268 with 2,077 being unique. There were 3,504 pageviews with 1.54 pages per visit. The bounce rate was 75.13%, which is slightly higher than last month. Most people used Chrome (25.5%) followed by Internet Explorer (22.5%), Firefox (20.9%), and Safari (18.5%). Most visits were from New York City (166) followed by Fishers, Indiana (35), San Francisco (33), Chicago (26) and Indianapolis (25). Internet Explorer being topped by Chrome means that the addition of new technical content on mobile devices and query strings has attracted a more technical crowd compared to last month.

Top 10 Content

The three posts to fall out of the top ten were Arnart’s Erich Stauffer Fake Hummels (45), Email (49), and My CEO Heroes (6).

Top 10 Keywords


  • erich stauffer – 55 visits
  • – 39 visits
  • forward text messages to email – 22 visits
  • college club website – 13 visits
  • erich stauffer figurines – 13 visits
  • arnart imports – 12 visits
  • erich stauffer collectibles – 11 visits
  • collegeclub email – 10 visits
  • erich stauffer figurine prices – 10 visits
  • erich stauffer 8515 – 9 visits

Despite the new, technical content from, the only change in the top keywords was the addition of “forward text messages to email.”

Top 10 Sources

Erich Stauffer on Twitter

  • – 102 visits
  • – 38 visits
  • – 10 visits
  • – 7 visits
  • – 6 visits
  • – 6 visits
  • – 5 visits
  • – 5 visits
  • – 4 visits
  • – 4 visits

I was pleased to see Twitter ( in the mix this time and I am sure this has mostly to do with my testing of the Tweetily plugin to automatically and randomly send links to old WordPress posts.

Income Stats

Amazon Associates Affiliate Program: 82 Items Ordered – 78 Items Shipped – $150 Advertising Fees
Google Adsense: $127 Estimate

Top Posts and Keywords for November 2012

In this 667th post, I discuss my top content, keywords, and income for this website.

Occasionally I’ll do an analysis of my blog content and share it out for others to learn from what I’m doing. Dukeo does this with his monthly blogging stats so I’m thinking about doing it more often, maybe monthly. We’ll see. Here is my attempt at a monthly blog statistics analysis based on data from Google Analytics, Amazon Associates, and Google Adsense.

The spike in traffic you see at the right edge of the image below is from combining all posts from the old Watershawl site into this. Watershawl was averaging over 5000 unique visitors a month with two posts, “Syncing Outlook Calendar, Contacts, and Tasks with Android Using Gmail” and “How to Auto-Forward Text Messages to Email in Android, Blackberry, Windows Mobile, Palm Pre, and the iPhone” getting around 2000 unique visitors each. No doubt these will be the top 2 posts next month. Interestingly, they were originally written for my Geek Hand site, but were folded into Watershawl earlier this year so this is actually their second move. I’ve got a redirection plugin up on Watershawl to redirect traffic to Erich Stauffer for now.

Total visits was 1,544 with 1,417 being unique. There were 2,383 pageviews with 1.54 pages per visit. The bounce rate was 74.61%, which is really high. Most people used Internet Explorer (28%) followed by Chrome (24%), Safari (19.5%), Firefox (18%). Most visits were from the United States with most visitors being from California (128) followed by New York (94), Florida (72), Illinois (61), and Texas (58). Indiana had 38 for comparison. Judging by the use of Internet Explorer, the high content of Florida visitors, and the penchant for Erich Stauffer figurines, I’d say I have an older visitor base that is not interested in what I want to talk about most of the time (more on that later).

Top 10 Content

Of my Top Posts of 2011, the only one to fall out of the top 10 is “How to Delete a Digg Submission“. Regardless of how much I try to write about business, technology, and entrepreneurship, “the organism will do whatever it pleases.” My response to that in the past has been to ‘write more of what people are already looking at’ and sometimes I end up creating an entirely new site out of my most popular content, as I wrote about in Analyzing Actions in September of 2009. One post on Youtube Query String Parameters was turned into an entire site, which was later sold for $145. I did the same thing with the How to Stay Alert and Focused post. I’ve since made a new ‘query strings’-type site called Map Strings that gets most of it’s traffic from How To Run Google Maps On the Kindle Fire EDIT: moved the site here starting on 1/6/2013.

Top 10 Keywords

  • erich stauffer (68)
  • (31)
  • erich stauffer figurines (17)
  • what happened to collegeclub (14)
  • eric stauffer figurines (12)
  • erich stauffer figurine prices (11)
  • mexican cat (11)
  • arnart porcelain marks (9)
  • collegeclub email (8)
  • erich stauffer figurine (8)
As you might expect due to the domain name, I get a lot of traffic for the keyword and variations of, “Erich Stauffer”, the Arnart Import’s fake Hummel figurine artist I was named after. Second to that, people are still crazy about and seem to still wonder where all of their stuff went when it went belly up. Like them, I was interested so I did some research, found out, and shared it on my blog. I just didn’t think that all these years later it would still be some of my most popular blog posts. The “mexican cat” gets linked to a post called “Smarty Cat” through Google Image Search and that is also the reason “My CEO Heroes” ranks well – people are searching for an image of Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks.

Top 10 Sources

  • (89)
  • (19)
  • (11)
  • (10)
  • (4)
  • (4)
  • (4)
  • (3)
  • (3)
  • (2)

I have a pretty active Twitter account so it’s somewhat of a surprise to me to not see Twitter in the referral list, but I did get one (1) referral from Twitter, ranking it at #49. Qian8ao is a “Free Expense-Tracking Application and Personal Finance Community” in China. I’m not sure what link they have pointing to me as Google Analytics can’t resolve it properly and my go-to Google searches aren’t revealing anything, but I’m guessing that it’s not page visits, but a hot-linked image that is causing the count. I post links to this page via my Erich Stauffer Figurines page and the Erich Stauffer page. I have used Yahoo Answers as part of my SEO process successfully for a number of years.

Income Stats

  • Amazon Associates Affiliate Program: 72 Clicks – 0 Items Ordered – 0 Items Shipped – 0 Advertising Fees
  • Google Adsense: $12.74 Estimate