Google Analytics – Keywords and SEO

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Last week we discussed Visitor Reports in this new series of posts all about getting to grips with Google Analytics.  This week we’re looking at the Traffic Source reports and specifically keywords.

If acted upon these helpful reports can lead to an increase in quality visits to your shop.  Focusing your promotional activity and fine tuning your listings and shop content to increase traffic and hopefully sales too.  Quality visits/traffic are from the people who are actually likely to enjoy your product and perhaps may even buy.

Looking at your Google Analytics dashboard click on ‘Traffic Sources’ in the left hand navigation links.  You will be shown an overview of the traffic sources to you Folksy shop.  Searches x%, Referrals y% and Direct traffic z% as well as a link to your keywords.   There is no magic ratio of percentages from these traffic sources that will lead to sales in your Folksy shop.  However if you understand what they mean you can work on increasing the quality traffic to your shop and spending the time you have available to do so much more effectively.

Don’t forget that if you find any of these reports useful you can ‘add to dashboard’ for easy access as we discussed in last weeks post.

Searches Engines

You may have heard the term SEO or Search Engine Optimisation.  Put simply, it means… “do my items appear near the top of the search engine results pages (SERPs) when someone searches for an item similar to one I have listed” And the optimisation part is… “Eeeek, my items are on page 9 – so what can I do to make them appear higher and get people into my shop?”

Google analytics will tell you how many visitors came via a particular search engine and it will show you the keywords that brought visitors to your shop.  Google Analytics calls these visits ‘organic’ unless you have paid for the traffic.  Organic visits are something to aim to increase as this is free traffic to your shop from people who are clearly interested having searched for a product similar to yours.  SEO is big business with many experts around, but the principles are quite simple. Don’t be put off from trying to improve your shops SEO, it takes time but it will be worthwhile.

Keywords

Keywords are the words people type into searches.  Search engines index your Folksy shop listings using web-crawlers, the search engines return results based on what they have found out through crawling around the various websites.  Click on ‘search engines’ on your GA dashboard and it will show you a graph charting the visits from various search engines.  If you click on any of these search engines, for example ‘google’ you will then see the list of keywords that resulted in these visits.   Better still you can look at the ‘keywords’ report which gives you the keywords across all of the search engines.

Just knowing that 24% of traffic to your shop is from a search engine is not much use at all, you need to understand why and work out what you need to do about it.  If the keywords seem very abstract to your product or you are not bringing in as much traffic for a keyword as you thought, you will need to look at your Folksy shop items, titles, keywords and descriptions.  Work out which keywords you are trying to target and then apply some of the tips from this post  about writing titles an descriptions to improve seo. There is huge competition for certain keywords so keyword phrases may be better to aim for.

There is a theory in SEO that as people get closer to actually buying, their search queries get more specific, so it may be wise to try and capitalise on this by using keyword phrases in your folksy shop listings, 3 or 4 words in a specific order.  For example someone looking to buy a purse may first search for ‘red purse’ and get millions of results.  After a bit of online research and seeing the sort of thing they like, their next search may be for ‘appliqued red leather clutch’ so by using that phrase in your listings and images you may be more likely to receive traffic that will result in a sale – aka quality traffic. (In seo terms this is known as using long tail keywords for increased conversion – sounds complex put like that!)

We looked at ‘Visitor reports‘ in detail in the previous post.  Click on a keyword to see the various types of visits as well as the duration and depth of the visit. You may find out by noticing a short ‘average time on site’ for a specific keyword phrase, that visitors are not staying to look around your shop.  At this point you need to think about what’s turning people off.  The keywords may be bringing them but why aren’t they staying to look around.  Product shots and the overall professional look of your shop may need addressing. Looking at the ‘content’ reports will also give you alot of insight into which products are working well you can then dig deeper and look at the entrance keywords for each item.  We’ll be discussing these reports soon, yes we know it seems never ending, but it’s worth it!

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There are many other factors that help to boost your shops ranking in keyword searches – just look at this mega list. Google uses masses of different ways to discover and rank web pages, they want the results they provide to be relevant and not full of spam.  Links from other quality websites to your shop  (backlinks) are known to be a good way to improve rankings, they count as a sort of vote of confidence.  All that social media is important too, having online friends supporting your links through sharing and blogging is another way to give your shop pages a boost with extra backlinks. SEO experts report that quality beats quantity with regard to backlinks.  We’re looking at referrals next, so we’ll go into this in much more detail.

There’s alot more that you can do with google analytics (you have probably noticed things like ‘campaigns’ and ‘goals’) but we are just looking at the basics and organice ‘free’ traffic for the time being.

Let us know if there are any specific areas of analytics that bamboozle you!

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3 Comments

  • […] Once again we have looked at keyword reports, however when the keywords are relevant to a specific listing this gives you so much more detail. How are your descriptions and titles? If you are finding that the keywords either aren’t what you expected or are non existant then you may need to rewrite your descriptions and titles. (help – Referrals, links back to your folksy shop / Keywords SEO ) […]

  • […] grips with the basics of Google Analytics reports, we’ve already looked at visitor reports,  keywords and SEO and now we are going to look at referring sites reports. Where is the traffic to your Folksy.com […]

  • January 20, 2011

    Jennifer StitchMeLane

    this is really helpful. i have google analytics haven’t really understood how to access all of it’s info. thanks for posting this.