“You can’t know where you’re going until you know where you’ve been.” 

Sure, it’s one of those cliche statements that ends up in mediocre romantic comedies like Will Smith’s “Hitch.” But it’s also good advice for bloggers. How do you know if you’re making a difference unless you’ve got benchmarks to gauge your progress? Sure, you get great comments from people who thank you for that inspiring blog post.

But the practical side of me loves cold, hard numbers – page views, users, bounce rates, traffic sources. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, then you’re in the right place. This week’s blogging topic is Google Analytics a FREE tool from Google, which provides invaluable information on your site. Want to know your blog’s most popular post? Or how many people visited your site last month? Or how many people are on your site RIGHT NOW and what they are reading? It’s all found within Google Analytic’s endless screens of data.

Let’s start with the basics:

Google Analytics – This is the main page where you sign up. (That’s about as basic as it gets.)

How to install Google Analytics on your WordPress site

How to install Google Analytics on WordPress and Blogger

What to do with it once it’s installed:

Google Analytics Academy – Free online classes offered by Google!

How to Read Google Analytics | Part 1: The Basics

How to Read Google Analytics | Part 2: A Deeper Look

My personal favorite: A Crash Course in Google Analytics for Anyone Who’s Sick of Feeling Like an Idiot

More tips and tricks: 

Using Google Analytics to Unlock the Secrets of Your Blog’s Audience

50 Resources for Getting the Most Out of Google Analytics

The 10 Most Important Things You Should Pay Attention to in Analytics

 

 

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